By Ray Johnson, USAG Bavaria Public AffairsMay 28, 2014
GRAFENWOEHR, Germany -- In April, Installation Management Command recognized the U.S. Army Garrison Bavaria Antiterrorism Office as one of its Heroes of the Day, and with good reason.
The USAG Bavaria ATO won the Army Antiterrorism Award for a Category B Installation, which is a full-service garrison with a workforce of 15,000-20,000 strong. The team is comprised of Jerry Hollo, Paul Gentry, Keith Brewer and Richie Reeder.
As the largest overseas Army installation by population and the geographically largest garrison in Europe, USAG Bavaria hosts 120 mission partners and thousands of U.S. Soldiers and multinational forces who train here annually. It controls 55 off-post, government-leased housing areas. And it oversees force protection at Garmisch's George C. Marshall European Center for Security Studies, the NATO School and AFRC's Edelweiss Lodge and Resort.
The ATO team earned Army and IMCOM honors "by protecting and educating a diverse range of 41,000 service members, civilians, contractors, family members, local nationals and guests who rely on us for their security," said COL Jim Saenz, commander of USAG Bavaria.
"The team's passion and sense of urgency when articulating antiterrorism requirements," Saenz
added, "confirms their commitment in keeping all of us safe from harm."
The following are major antiterrorism achievements from the ATO team:
* Authored and implemented USAG Bavaria's first holistic installation surveillance detection program by using military police, contract security guards, host nation police, military intelligence, non-military partners and the entire Bavaria Military Community.
* The Directorate of Emergency Services established joint, off-post presence patrols with local national police in places U.S. personnel often frequent. For example, military police conduct foot patrols of nearby train stations and towns outside the gates.
* The office pursued an aggressive public awareness campaign to keep the BMC informed of State Department travel alerts/warnings, demonstrations and force protection condition changes by using social media, websites, emails, a weekly newsletter, protection advisories and bilingual iWatch trifolds. The community responded to this outreach by increasing suspicious activity reporting fourfold.
* And the ATO reenergized the installation's Random Antiterrorism Measures program. They increased tenant RAM participation from 13% to 100% in four months by improving relationships with mission partners, commanders, directors and action officers. RAM includes tenant participation, directed measures, compliance records, monthly report cards to command and a quarterly memo signed by the garrison commander.
LTG David Halverson, commander of IMCOM, praised the four-man ATO team for their accomplishment, saying: "After more than a decade of conflict, we all realize that being proactive and adapting as needed and when needed are paramount to protecting our folks and installations. The U.S Army Garrison Bavaria has certainly taken that to heart. I congratulate you on your well-deserved honor."