REDSTONE ARSENAL, Ala. -- Army Materiel Command inducted five new members who represent the best of both military and civilian leadership into its Hall of Fame March 10.
The five inductees -- retirees Gen. Ann Dunwoody, Gen. Dennis Via, Command Sgt. Maj. Jeffrey Mellinger, and Senior Executive Service civilians Kathryn Condon and Vincent Faggioli -- were recognized in an official ceremony in the AMC Executive Operations Center, followed by the unveiling of their plaques on the AMC Hall of Fame display.
"This is recognition for the great leadership represented by these individuals," said AMC commander Gen. Gus Perna. "We here at Army Materiel Command are now able to follow their great leadership and hopefully emulate it."
AMC's Hall of Fame, established in 2012 when Dunwoody was its commander, honors and memorializes Soldiers and civilians who have made significant and enduring contributions to AMC and the Army. The Hall of Fame preserves the command's history and recognizes the exceptional leadership, service and dedication of former AMC members for their remarkable efforts. The March 10 inductees are members of the Hall of Fame's 2019 class.
"The plaques that hold the names of these leaders are shaped like the AMC shield, representing the AMC patch. That patch is so important because those who see it know we -- 190,000 employees strong -- are backing what they are doing for our Army," Perna said. "AMC and what it represents is reflected in the symbols of the Hall of Fame."The careers of each of the inductees are intertwined, with Dunwoody serving as commander of AMC at the same time Via served as its deputy commander (later going on to be its commander), Mellinger as its command sergeant major, and Condon and Faggioli as senior executive service members. Dunwoody, the nation's first female four-star, commanded AMC from 2008 until her retirement in 2012. Via, the first Signal Corps officer to lead AMC, commanded from 2012 until his retirement in 2016. Mellinger, one of the Army's last drafted enlistees to serve, was part of the command group at AMC from 2007 until his retirement in 2011. Condon served as AMC's executive deputy to the commanding general from 2006 to 2009. Faggioli served as the AMC deputy command counsel and then the command counsel from 2007 until his retirement in 2012.
"It was a great honor for me to be part of this class," Dunwoody said. "I was included in a class of honorees who made a difference at AMC while I was here and who set the foundation for people who continue to make a difference as AMC evolves."
In the audience for the ceremony were other past AMC leaders, including retired Command Sgt. Maj. Ronald Riling, himself a 2018 Hall of Fame inductee; and retired executive deputy commander John Nerger, as well as AMC leadership from throughout Redstone Arsenal, and several civilian and military employees who served with the leaders at some point in their careers."They are all outstanding leaders," said AMC Command Sgt. Maj. Rodger Mansker. "They are all incredible. Command Sgt. Maj. Mellinger taught me a lot and pulled me up to higher echelons in my career. He told me, 'More is expected of you. Let's go.'"For Mellinger, the ceremony was a chance to revisit his accomplishments and experiences as one of the Army's longest and last serving drafted enlistees."The ceremony was pretty powerful and overwhelming," he said. "It's hard to put into words. I certainly felt the appreciation. You know, you do all these things when you serve that you have no expectation of ever being recognized for. This ceremony was a great walk down memory lane. It reflects on the privilege it was to be recognized."Referring to the AMC video shown during the ceremony, Mellinger mentioned a map that showed the 26 locations of AMC's organic industrial base. "I visited every single one of those facilities, and the units that deployed and redeployed while I was at AMC," he said."I hope I've left a legacy of a leader who leads from the front, and who cared about Soldiers and making sure they had the best equipment and the best training to enable them to come home safely. That's what drove me to seek this position in the first place and stay as long as I did."
Dunwoody also referred to the legacy of the inductees."When people see our plaques, I hope they see and reflect on how we worked to take care of people," she said. "Our legacy is we developed the next bench."