By Justin Graff, ASC Public AffairsJanuary 15, 2015
ROCK ISLAND ARSENAL, Ill. -- The U.S. Army Sustainment Command deputy provost marshal will receive the Department of the Army's 2014 Antiterrorism Honor Roll award, Feb. 6.
Maj. Preston Blair, a native of Oswego, Kansas, joined the Army 18 years ago as a military policeman and has served tours in both Iraq and Afghanistan. He was nominated for the award by Col. Donald Mayer, G3/7 (logistics), ASC, for major contributions to ASC's antiterrorism effort and overall procedures in crisis situations.
"Major Blair has done great work for the command," said Mayer. "His initiative and hard work in creating the command's active shooter SOP and antiterrorism plan have greatly enhanced the preparedness and safety of the command. Those documents were recognized by U.S. Army Materiel Command to be the best in the command and were distributed to AMC major subordinate commands as examples to follow."
Blair produced ASC's first-ever Active Shooter Plan/Standard Operating Procedure. The SOP includes active shooter response steps, an incident checklist for command center tracking, reporting instructions for all ASC personnel, educational materials for future mandatory training, command group responsibilities, and a task organization diagram that captures the relationship between ASC's senior commander and Rock Island Arsenal Garrison leadership.
"Communication is a primary focus," said Blair. "We have to get the word out so people know what to do, where to go, and who their points of contact are on every level of this building."
In support of the Active Shooter SOP, Blair planned and coordinated training for all Soldiers and civilians assigned to ASC, achieving a 100 percent completion rate.
Throughout the process of drafting the SOP, Blair identified a potential communication problem between the senior command and Garrison headquarters. In the event ASC's senior commander was unable to leave his location during an active shooter event, there was no way to receive real time information from the force protection elements on the ground. Blair got approval for a purchase essential in providing emergency communication for any terrorist events here.
"We bought specific radios that allow us to communicate with other agencies," Blair explained. "We can communicate with response agencies on the island, like the Rock Island Arsenal Fire Department, as well as Quad Cities agencies, such as local police."
Blair also planned and coordinated force protection assessments at 11 Logistics Readiness Centers, conducted by the Provost Marshal Office. The assessments revealed deficiency trends at each facility that impacted the security of ASC assets. They were crucial to ensure the LRC directors became aware of these vulnerabilities and could proceed towards rectifying them.
Regular assessments and training are vital to improving operational efficiency during crisis events across all of ASC.
"I feel confident this plan will work well," said Blair. "What we're working on now is improving training at the brigade level, so each brigade has key personnel who know exactly what to do."
In nominating Blair for the award, Mayer said, "As force protection professionals, we realize that terrorism has many faces and can happen at any place or time. It is crucial that all Soldiers, civilians and family members are made aware of these threats and are provided the information to counter any event that may happen where they work or live."
"There's still work to be done across Rock Island," said Blair. "However, I know we're greatly improved as these plans are being implemented."
ASC will have the opportunity to test Blair's SOP during a large scale exercise in the spring time.