The U.S. Army Aviation and Missile Command recently honored Robert Farmer, a logistics management specialist, among the command’s Most Valuable Player awardees.
Farmer, at the time, was assigned to the AMCOM Logistics Center and supported the Program Executive Office – Missiles and Space (PEO M&S). He served as an item manager for equipment repair parts when the Lower Tier Project Office (LTPO) needed someone to temporarily back-fill an ammunition manager position. Farmer volunteered, even though he had no previous experience with ammunition items.
As a self-proclaimed “spreadsheet ninja,” that opportunity was the perfect chance to showcase his data-driven and customer-service skills on a broader scale, improving readiness at the point of need in support of Soldiers around the world.
Farmer coordinated with Department of the Army G-4, Munitions Division, to complete a seamless redistribution of assets, processing the movement of hundreds of missiles via airlift from sites in the United States to multiple combatant commands facing critical deadlines. Following the redistribution of assets and movement of missiles, he coordinated with the LTPO team to provide Army G-4 with accurate projections and timelines to meet operational requirements throughout the Army. He tracked all LTPO munitions inventories, developed effective solutions to unique situations and kept his leadership informed, according to the LTPO Director of Logistics Development Division, Ronnie W. Brasel, Jr., who nominated Farmer for the MVP award.
“Without [Farmer’s] efforts, U.S. Central Command Soldiers would not have received the necessary munitions and support needed to accomplish their mission,” said Brasel. “He went above and beyond his scope of duties in taking on the role of liaison between AMCOM and the U.S. Central Command Quality Assurance Specialist Ammunition Surveillance in order to have missiles repaired in country instead of being retrograded back to the United States, which saved the Army both time and money.”
Working with the military is nothing new for Farmer, a Hillsville, Virginia, native. He served as an active-duty U.S. Navy master at arms (military policeman) from 2006-2008. He was then recalled to service from 2010-2011 for a deployment to Afghanistan. He still serves with a Navy Reserve unit in Florida.
His path from military policeman to logistics management specialist began while pursuing a history degree and a Master of Business Administration (Information Technology concentration) from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech). Farmer was selected for an Army Logistics internship in Virginia, then relocated to AMCOM at Redstone Arsenal in 2017.
Farmer said he enjoys the detailed aspects of his work and collaborating with Soldiers in the field to ensure they get the munitions they need to remain ready to fight.
“I feel better connected with the Warfighter. My work often keeps me in touch with logistics Soldiers at the unit level. I help them resolve their problems and concerns,” he said. “It’s never boring in this business. There are always short suspenses and taskers to fulfill.”