FORT STEWART, Georgia (May 25, 2021) -- Soldiers from the 904th Contracting Battalion headquarters and Contracting Detachment B completed its external evaluation May 10-14 in preparation for their upcoming deployments.
The external evaluation is the culminating exercise that validates a unit’s ability to accomplish its mission-essential tasks. Observers from the 925th CBN at Fort Drum, New York, the 419th Contracting Support Brigade at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, and the Mission and Installation Contracting Command at Joint Base San Antonio-Fort Sam Houston, Texas, conducted the evaluation. A vital component of the assessment was the 925th CBN’s recent completion of its deployment in Afghanistan.
“Their (925th CBN Soldiers) real-world experience was invaluable,” said Maj. Jerry Andes, 904th CBN operations officer. “They created mission event synchronization list injects on the fly based on real-world scenarios that happened to them in theater that stressed us and added tremendously to the exercise.”
The units completed 71 mission event synchronization list, or MESL, injects, including three involving rear detachment personnel.
CONDET B completed the first EXEVAL as a CONDET, because the organization changed from five-person contracting teams to nine-person contracting detachments, blazing a trail for others to follow.
“The training was very challenging,” said Maj. Alicia Scott, the CONDET B commander at Fort Stewart, Georgia. “Seven of our eight personnel have less than a year of experience in contracting, and the EXEVAL provided a tremendous learning and training opportunity.”
CONDET B was able to train and validate decentralized operations to simulate real-world contingency operations. Conducting both EXEVALs together allowed a depth of training and would not have been possible had the units trained separately.
“The level of collaboration between the battalion staff and the CONDET was impressive,” noted Maj. Michael Bresette, an evaluator from the 925th CBN.
The battalion provided reach back by conducting contingency contracting administration services training and backfilled positions for the CONDET when MESLs forced some Soldiers out of action. The depth of the support would have been reduced had the staff been role players.
The EXEVAL validated both units' ability to provide operational contract support at echelon. The 904th CBN headquarters will deploy this summer, and CONDET B deploys this winter.
About the MICC
Headquartered at Joint Base San Antonio-Fort Sam Houston, Texas, the Mission and Installation Contracting Command consists of about 1,500 military and civilian members who are responsible for contracting goods and services in support of Soldiers as well as readying trained contracting units for the operating force and contingency environment when called upon. As part of its mission, MICC contracts are vital in feeding more than 200,000 Soldiers every day, providing many daily base operations support services at installations, facilitate training in the preparation of more than 100,000 conventional force members annually, training more than 500,000 students each year, and maintaining more than 14.4 million acres of land and 170,000 structures.