JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-FORT SAM HOUSTON, Texas (April 2, 2014) -- In 40 years a Mission and Installation Contracting Command acquisition professional went from being stationed as an Airman at a remote air station in southern Italy listening to dots and dashes to crossing T's and dotting I's on contracts as a contract specialist in Virginia.This week, Janice Elliott, a supervisory contract specialist with the MICC-Fort Eustis, is retiring after 40 years of federal service.In 1973, she joined the Air Force. Elliott's first assignment was at San Vito Air Force Station in Brindisi, Italy. For 18 months, she worked as a Morse systems intercept operator before returning stateside to cross-train as an electrician. Elliott worked as an electrician for two years at Bergstrom Air Force Base, Texas, until 1977 when she applied to her first acquisition career field position and was assigned to the base contracting division at Langley AFB, Va., for four years.After receiving an honorable discharge from the Air Force in October 1981, Elliott began her civilian service as a summer hire at the directorate of contracting at Fort Eustis.As a team lead, she has trained and mentored more than 42 percent of the MICC-Eustis workforce during her tenure."My experience at Fort Eustis has been one that very few will experience," Elliott said. "I have worked under the leadership of five directors here. I've adjusted to being with the Training and Doctrine Acquisition Command, TRADOC Contracting Activity, Northern Region Contracting Command, and now the MICC. Working here for the past 32 years has allowed me to come into contact with such a diverse workforce, which has empowered me with much patience and tolerance for differences in other cultures.""She spent her entire 1102 career here, back to the days when it was known by other names but essentially the same contracting office," said Ryan McCauley, chief of contracts division C and Elliott's supervisor. "She was able to be promoted within the organization up to team lead and contracting officer level, which is quite a feat since many promotions between GS-7 to GS-13 require mobility and seeking out promotions at other organizations. That is a testament to not only her acquisition knowledge, skills and abilities but also attributed to her loyalty and ties to the organization and to the Hampton Roads, Va., area."She has worked large actions such as the ROTC instructor contract, Installation Management Command security guard and a myriad of other actions that have been high visibility and high dollars throughout her career."My greatest memory will always be exercising real negotiation skills before the acquisition streamline process was implemented," Elliott said."Elliott is a true contributor to the MICC organization and its mission and critical to meeting the needs of our customers," McCauley said. "She has a very even temperament, and a perfect blend of friendliness and firmness when working with customers. She is stoic yet energized at the same time and determined to do the right thing. She certainly will be missed!"When asked what she will miss the most when she retires, Elliott simply said "the people."Once retired, Elliott said she will be working with the Hampton Women's shelter as well as the Young Women's Christian Association; entering baking contests for magazines, and spending more time with her family.