By Mr. Johnathon Orrell (SDDC)August 30, 2018
The commanding general of Army Materiel Command (AMC), Gen. Gustave F. Perna, met with senior leaders of the Military Surface Deployment and Distribution Command (SDDC) at Scott Air Force base, Ill. Aug. 28, to discuss global operations within SDDC and receive updates about current and future operations.
Perna also imparted his goals for SDDC and provided guidance about how he sees AMC's relationship with the new commander of the U.S. Transportation Command (USTRANSCOM), Gen. Stephen R. Lyons.
"Change is a good thing and provides a different perspective for where the command needs to be headed," he said.
"The status quo will not be accepted, you need to keep challenging yourselves," he added.
Because SDDC is a unique command that serves as both the Army Service Component Command to USTRANSCOM and a major subordinate command to AMC, Perna put into very simple terms what he expects from the balanced relationship between the three commands.
"Do what Gen. Lyons wants and keep me informed," he said.
During Perna's visit, SDDC commanding general Maj. Gen. Stephen E. Farmen led the discussion about what transportation means to the warfighter; and this was a topic Perna honed in on quickly.
"You're a major cog in everything we do," Perna said. "The players don't get to the field without transportation."
This is something Farmen was happy to hear since SDDC's mission to move and sustain forces and materiel across the nation and around the globe is critical to the total Army mission. By doing this mission, Farmen says SDDC delivers readiness and lethality to the warfighter.
"Our focus is on future operations and staying left of boom, ahead in our planning. When Gen. Perna walks out the door, we want him to have the continued confidence that SDDC is always ready to answer the call," Farmen said.
Perna also shared his expectations for leaders and how they can continue to support USTRANSCOM and AMC through precise and systematic methods of guiding the force.
"The most important things leaders -- including myself -- can think is how information is flowing from the top down and how effective it is in the delivery," he said.
"The wrong way of thinking is that more information is better," Perna said. "The right way of thinking is 'are we getting the right information to the force?' Without that we cannot lead the force successfully."
Farmen said he appreciates Perna's quarterly visits, since they provide opportunities for him and his senior leaders to impart information about SDDC's ongoing efforts directly to the general.
"This is our opportunity as a command to have a face-to-face conversation with Gen. Perna and to bring him abreast of what we are doing as a command as a whole," he said.
"When the commanding general of AMC takes the time to visit his commands, it's an outstanding opportunity to show him all the great things SDDC is doing around the world to support the warfighter. It also helps him get a feel for what we have done, what we are doing, and where we are heading as a command," Farmen added.
Before departing, Perna provided some final words of wisdom to help guide the command into the future.
"Be on the journey and lead yourself through it," he said. "Remember to ask yourself, 'where are you focused and what are you focused on'?"