Leader’s perspective: Team MICC efforts crucial to nation winning war against COVID-19
By Brig. Gen. Christine Beeler, Mission and Installation Contracting Command commanding generalJune 4, 2020
JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-FORT SAM HOUSTON, Texas (June 4, 2020) -- Our nation’s war on the Coronavirus has been unprecedented, and I thank every Soldier and Army civilian of our command for being dedicated to delivering ready, decisive and synchronized business solutions and contracting support to our mission partners in this difficult time around the world.As many of the operational areas are beginning to demobilize and retrograde, we will continue to synchronize our efforts and deliver uninterrupted support across the joint operations area. Through this all, one thing has become abundantly clear -- Team MICC continues to lead the way in the Army fight against COVID-19. We have executed approximately 4,000 contracting actions valued at more than $66 million. The flexibility in authorities and limitations granted for the use of the Government Purchase Card Program has made our team invaluable in meeting the immediate needs of our Army and joint mission partners.Our COVID-19 mission is not complete. As you may have read, the president announced Gen. Gus Perna, the commanding general of Army Materiel Command, to co-lead Operation Warp Speed and find a COVID-19 vaccine by January 2021. As the contract execution arm for AMC, the Army Contracting Command is committed to supporting this operation and has expressed complete faith in our contracting workforce to take its operational excellence to the next level on behalf of the health and welfare of the American public. At the same time, we will continue delivering on the day-to-day support essential to preserving installation readiness that serves as the Army’s power projection platform. We must harness that conviction in continuing to deliver for our supported organizations in this COVID-19 environment.The efforts by this command have demonstrated that we can get the job done, whether we are teleworking from home or practicing safe distancing in the office. In May, I formalized implementation guidance on the reoccupation of the workplace that provides a conditions-based, phased approach to returning our workforce to the office. Available on the MICC SharePoint site, this standardized approach lays out criteria for each of three phases for transition. The guidance outlines measures for returning from telework as well as identifying vulnerable personnel so that we can continue to protect the force, retain, deliver and enable readiness, and methodically normalize our workplaces over time.The overarching guidance includes requirements for personal protective equipment, social distancing and other local conditions. Supplies required to support the reoccupation of our workspaces have been ordered across the command; however, there still may be some delays in receiving them as supply chains are challenged to meet worldwide demands. The driver for any steps taken will remain synchronized with guidance set forth by your respective state governors, local city officials, senior mission commanders and garrison commanders. Let me be clear, there is no rush to bring everyone back to the office at once. For some offices, it may be approximately 25% of the workforce, but each has its own unique challenges to address. Reoccupying our workplace demands a disciplined and measured approach by all leaders across the command.As we enter into our busiest quarter of the fiscal year, exercising disciplined initiative is critical to managing this transition. Whether working from home or in the office, we must remain focused on delivering for our mission partners and obligating funds against their priorities. To that end, I expect the workforce to complete the required mandatory online training modules in Total Employee Development no later than the onset of fourth quarter. Our confidence, competence and capabilities are our bedrock, and we need the total team’s attention on finishing the fiscal year strong in order to Win!Team MICC is committed to taking care of our piece of the Army while we strive for excellence. Throughout the fiscal year, the MICC command team has achieved numerous outstanding accomplishments worthy of recognition and our public affairs office is always available to assist the total team with telling our story. Among the outstanding performers, we would like to recognize Staff Sgt. Debra Stokes from the 923rd Contracting Battalion at Fort Riley, Kansas, for being named the Army Contracting Command Best Warrior and Staff Sgt. Kathlyn Stewart with the 900th CBN at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, who finished second runner-up. Through vigilant preparation, mentorship and dedication, the two contract specialists earned a spot to represent the ACC at the Army Materiel Command Best Warrior Competition in July.Contracting for Soldiers! With Honor!