ROCK ISLAND ARSENAL, Ill. – The U.S. Army Materiel Command’s top leader recognized some outstanding individuals from the U.S. Army Sustainment Command and received updates on ASC’s initiatives and mission during his quarterly visit here on Nov. 19.
Gen. Ed Daly, commanding general of AMC, was briefed on ASC’s current status in a socially distanced setting in the command’s main conference room. Others from around ASC headquarters and the command’s remote locations called in and attended as virtual participants.
Daly began the briefing by recognizing these six members of the ASC team, all of whom will receive commander’s coins and certificates:
• Susan Stevens, a financial management specialist in G-8 who serves as ASC’s payroll customer service representative and provides payroll support to more than 4,000 civilian employees working in multiple organizations.
• Wilbur Benson, an operational plans analyst in the Future Operations Branch who served as lead planner for the Defender Pacific 20 exercise and is currently planning the 2021 exercise.
• Robert Haverback, a management specialist in the Transportation Services Division, who acted as the Army’s subject matter expert during the stop-move restriction brought on by the coronavirus pandemic and coordinated the movement of personal property while providing excellent customer service.
• Master Sgt. Maritza Miles, who serves as the Lead Materiel Integrator Non-Commissioned Officer in Charge and has helped assure the readiness of high-priority units throughout the Army.
• Matt Meenan, a logistics management specialist in the Acquisition Integration and Management Center who has been instrumental in standing up the Logistic Civil Augmentation Program’s support to Operation Warp Speed.
• Jose “Joe” Perez-Rodriquez, a logistics management specialist in the Acquisition Integration and Management Center who was also honored for his work on LOGCAP’s support to Operation Warp Speed.
Daly was then briefed on ASC’s progress on Project Inclusion, a holistic Army-wide effort to promote equity, diversity and inclusion at all locations and among all ranks, grades and levels. The project includes initiatives such training, listening sessions, and reviews of promotion policies and practices, with the intent to eliminate institutional barriers that can hinder individual development and advancement.
The briefing slide was titled “Seeing Ourselves,” and Daly learned that ASC had taken a hard look at its level of diversity through surveys, listening sessions and data analysis. The main problem areas identified in this process were an underrepresentation of females, especially in high grades; a perception that employees’ voices are not being heard; and barriers to self-improvement and advancement.
Daly was told that ASC’s “way ahead” for Project Inclusion would target certain colleges for recruiting new employees; use technology to solicit ideas and transmit information to the workforce; increase transparency and communication; create new mentorship and training opportunities; and build an ASC-wide team culture.
“I applaud your efforts to identify and understand the problem,” Daly said. “We need to continue the momentum, and we need to show that our efforts will produce results.
“We’re not promoting diversity just for the sake of diversity,” Daly said. “Objective, data-based studies show that diverse organizations perform better.”
Daly said that reaching out to individuals with potential and mentoring them was the key to success in building diverse organizations.
“We don’t want leaders around the table who all look, act and see things the same way,” he said.
“When we’re hiring, we need to cast the net wide enough so we include a diverse group of candidates,” he said, adding that there are tools available that can help broaden recruitment and retainment policies.
“I’m truly passionate about this,” Daly said of Project Inclusion. “I truly believe it is paramount and is a cornerstone of our future success.”
The briefing then updated Daly on topics such as ASC’s support to the Army’s modernization efforts; the ongoing transition of the Logistics Civil Augmentation Program from LOGCAP IV to LOGCAP V; the use of LOGCAP to support Operation Warp Speed by setting up and maintaining sites for coronavirus vaccine clinical trials; improvements in the inspection, shipment and delivery of household goods; the use of data analysis in the household goods mission and other areas; and ASC’s current resourcing and budget posture.
As the briefing concluded, brigade commanders from around ASC commented on their status and recent accomplishments.
“I’m really proud of what this organization is doing,” Daly said. “You’re thinking deep in your approach to your mission and functions.
“You need to keep pressing and moving forward,” Daly concluded. “You know the priorities, and you need to do your part to help posture the Army for the future.”