By Kari HawkinsDecember 18, 2017
In 2017, the Aviation and Missile Command marked a number of transformational changes, paving the way for 2018, as the command continues to improve on its ability to enable sustainable materiel readiness while meeting combatant commander requirements.
AMCOM's partnerships with the Army Contracting Command-Redstone and the Aviation and Missile Research, Development and Engineering Center - solidified through the Unified Action operational realignment - created a more powerful, synchronized and focused effort in support of Army readiness. The logistics, maintenance and sustainment mission of AMCOM's 25,000-employee team led by commander Maj. Gen. Doug Gabram continues to be critical to the readiness and success of the Army's aviation and missile systems as well as calibration materiel readiness.
"Operationalizing AMCOM" was the theme for the year as AMCOM built on Unified Action to transform its internal organizational efforts in support of a more operational command posture. AMCOM's internal reorganization ensures that the command is organized in the most effective and efficient structure to enable readiness, and is more efficient, responsive and adaptable to the needs of the warfighter. Such developments are in line with Army Materiel Command guidance to synchronize and integrate capabilities both within AMCOM and in its partnerships with ACC-Redstone and AMRDEC.
As part of the re-org, some of the roles and responsibilities that are operations-centered transitioned from the AMCOM Logistics Center to the newly established AMCOM G-3/5, which is focused on synchronizing current and future operations. This change enables the AMCOM Logistics Center to better prioritize sustainable and materiel readiness, increases staff effectiveness and emphasizes accountability for readiness. As a result, ALC has increased supply availability, bringing parts and supplies much closer to 100 percent availability for the warfighter.
As the year progressed, AMCOM employees were introduced to the AMCOM Campaign Plan, which includes four lines of effort. The main effort is Sustainable/Materiel Readiness with the other three efforts being Future Army, Human Dimension and Resource Management. The efforts support AMC priorities of Strategic Readiness, Future Force, and Soldiers and People.
The AMCOM Campaign Plan provides guidance for the next two years; shows the organization's operational role in Army readiness; nests AMCOM's lines of effort with Army priorities; and enables AMCOM directors and supervisors to tie resourcing, employee appraisals and individual development plans to AMCOM priorities.
Operationally, AMCOM's emphasis for 2017 was meeting the Short Range Air Defense requirement, and developing the Multi-Mission Launcher and the UH-60V Black Hawk. Additionally, AMCOM's Aviation Field Maintenance Directorate shipped Army Aviation Rapid Deployment Equipment to deployed units. Other highlights included ACC-Redstone's contract award for the Black Hawk Multi-Year Contract IX, support for the delivery of UH-60A Black Hawks to the Afghanistan Air Force and AMRDEC's launching of the Weapon System Cyber Resilience Initiative.
AMCOM continues a number of key efforts, including Conditioned Based Maintenance Plus, AMCOM 101 for Aviation, Earned Value Management at the Letterkenny Army Depot, Pennsylvania, and the Art of the Possible at Corpus Christi Army Depot, Texas.
Weather conditions and historic events shaped 2017 for AMCOM. The command implemented hazardous weather support for Corpus Christi Army Depot during Hurricane Harvey and provided safe harbor for Fort Rucker, Alabama, helicopters during Hurricane Irma. AMCOM employees also celebrated the command's 20th anniversary while Letterkenny Army Depot recognized its 75th anniversary and Corpus Christi Army Depot its 56th anniversary.
AMCOM continued to lead excellence with its engineering workforce and depot missions. AMCOM is the only organization within the Army and the Army Materiel Command enterprise to win the DoD Value Engineering organization award for fiscal year 2016 achievements. The award was presented in July at the Pentagon.
AMCOM's value engineering program resulted in 106 completed projects with a cost savings of $163 million for the organization. The command's engineering teams also completed projects for multiple Redstone tenants and off-site organizations, realizing another $141 million in savings. Altogether, AMCOM engineering teams led 118 value engineering projects that saved a combined $304 million for the nation's taxpayers while better equipping its warfighters.
Work has already begun on the fiscal 2017 Value Engineering awards process. Recently, AMCOM presented Value Engineering and Life Cycle Cost Reduction awards to 16 organizations that had completed 112 value engineering projects, representing $295 million in savings and cost avoidance for local organizations and $27 million in savings for 19 field locations around the world. Additional benefits include mitigated obsolescence, improved capability, reduced cycle time, relieved Soldier burden and inserted technology. These projects will be submitted as AMCOM vies for DoD Value Engineering awards for its fiscal year 2017 projects.
AMCOM employees also made headlines in 2017 for their achievements. Letterkenny Army Depot employees won their 10th Shingo medallion, taking 2017 honors for building Patriot missile launchers. The award recognizes Letterkenny employees' mastery of fundamental tools and techniques for improving operations.
In addition, Dr. Myra Gray, director of the Test, Measurement and Diagnostic Equipment Activity, and Becky Weirick, executive director for the Army Contracting Command-Redstone, were honored by the Redstone-Huntsville Chapter of the Association of the U.S. Army as Army Civilians of the Year. The annual Ernest A. Young Logistics Achievement Awards recognized the AMCOM Logistics Center's Wayne "Tom" Ray as the top logistician in the Management/Executive category and Shannon McNatt as the best in the Professional/Technical category. Fifty-three Redstone Arsenal employees were honored for graduating from the Leader Investment for Tomorrow Program in 2017.
There were several leadership changes during the year at AMCOM. Among those, chief of staff Col. Todd Royar was promoted to brigadier general and is now assigned to the 101st Airborne Division at Fort Campbell, Kentucky. Command Sgt. Maj. Mike O'Donnell joined the AMCOM leadership team as did Col. Stephen Ledbetter, who is commander of Letterkenny Army Depot.