REDSTONE ARSENAL, Ala. -- In a year marked by national and world change, Army Materiel Command endured – achieving goals in the areas of people, readiness and modernization in support of Army senior leader priorities.
AMC and its 10 major subordinate commands stepped up to address several logistics and readiness issues that proved its capability to successfully respond to any assigned mission.
“AMC is making huge readiness impacts for the Army,” said Gen. Ed Daly, Army Materiel Command commanding general and the Army’s senior sustainer. “I am absolutely proud to lead our great materiel enterprise and serve shoulder-to-shoulder with our tremendous Soldiers and Department of the Army Civilians.”
AMC continues to focus its efforts within seven lines of effort: Soldier, Civilian and Family Readiness; Installation Readiness and Training Support; Industrial Base Readiness; Munitions Readiness; Strategic Power Projection; Supply Availability and Equipment Readiness; and Data Analytics and Logistics Information Readiness.
People remained AMC’s top priority, both internally to the organization and externally to the Soldiers and families who rely on AMC to provide support across four Army Quality of Life areas: Housing; Child Care and Youth Services; Spouse Employment; and PCS Moves.
As the Army’s largest employer of Army Civilians, AMC led the way in 2021 with civilian-based initiatives, including Ready Army Civilian, Black Engineer of the Year recruiting, talent management, and diversity training.
AMC continued efforts to combat the national threat of COVID-19, both in how it affects the AMC workforce and in building the nation’s capability to protect citizens against it. In early 2021, AMC was called on to ensure vaccination supplies were available, not only for Soldiers, Army Civilians and their families, but in support of Operation Warp Speed, for the nation’s citizens. While AMC’s Army Medical Logistics Command had a crucial role in getting vaccines to troops and beneficiaries, AMC’s Army Sustainment Command continued supporting OWS’ clinical trials to develop and deliver the vaccine.
AMC also supported vaccination augmentation teams by providing personal protective equipment and working in conjunction with U.S. Army North, Army G-3/5/7 and DOD entities to support a Federal Emergency Management Agency-led effort to vaccinate 100 million Americans in 100 days. The AMC team sent thousands of supplies, including gloves, N95 respirators, safety glasses and cloth face masks.
AMC made enormous strides in addressing the need to upgrade and modernize Army housing and barracks in 2021. From the $1.1 billion invested at six Army installations to improve existing homes and build 200 new homes, to a $4.4 million Army pilot program at Fort Benning to incorporate state-of-the-art utility monitoring and control systems, AMC continued its efforts to ensure high-quality housing for its Soldiers and their families. Both the Army and its Residential Communities Initiative privatized companies are continuing investments, with RCI companies investing an additional $2.9 billion in Army housing over the next five years, resulting in 3,000 new homes and nearly 13,000 renovations. In fiscal year 2020-21, RCI companies invested $800 million in Army housing. The Army will spend about $9 billion over the next 10 years to repair barracks.
Also in 2021, AMC fully implemented the Tenant Bill of Rights, designed to build good working relationships between privatized housing companies and the Soldiers, families and residents who live in them. The 18 subject areas set standards and expectations for the companies that manage Army housing properties.
To continue availability and access to high-quality child care, the Army has expanded the number of Family Child Care homes to reduce child care wait lists and increase affordability. AMC is helping to ensure Soldier spouse employment, streamlining the home-based business application/approval process in 2021 to grow family businesses on installations. And to further improve the PCS move process, AMC implemented standards-based quality assurance inspections, increased shipping inspections to 100% and launched the “Army PCS Moves” app that updates the location of household goods, arrival/departure from transitioning points, and storage locations for Soldiers and Families.
2021 saw no lack of current operations that allowed AMC to demonstrate its readiness to respond to any contingency, mission or task.
AMC was instrumental in Afghanistan retrograde and withdrawal operations in 2021, moving equipment out of theater and ensuring that equipment – from helicopters and missile systems to munitions and telecommunication radios – was replaced, recapitalized or repaired for movement to another theater or assigned to another unit. AMC also provided facilities at Army installations to relocate thousands of Afghan special immigrant applicants.
Two major AMC initiatives – Army Prepositioned Stocks and the DEFENDER series – continued to prove in 2021 that AMC provides the worldwide capability needed by the Army to rapidly respond in defense and protection of the U.S. and its allies.
AMC made several modifications to Army Prepositioned Stocks this year to ensure APS sets are optimally located, sized and configured to meet theater requirements and enhance Army readiness. In Europe, more than 2,500 pieces of equipment were repositioned between sites to better support combatant commanders’ requirements in Europe and Africa. Equipment was also modernized, including more than 80 tanks in Europe that received an upgraded armor package, sensors and power units.
Additionally, the Army put increased emphasis recently on using APS in competition in support of exercises and rotational deployments to enhance Army readiness and serve as a deterrent to adversaries. During the DEFENDER series, AMC exercised and validated the draw, employment and turn-in of equipment sets from APS in support of multinational exercises in Europe and the Indo-Pacific.
The DEFENDER exercises tested the Army’s strategic readiness and demonstrated the ability of the materiel, installation and sustainment enterprise to rapidly move Soldiers, equipment and supplies from the U.S. to the European and Indo-Pacific theaters at scale. During the exercises, AMC moved more than 3,000 pieces of equipment through more than a dozen unique sea ports of embarkation and five unique sea ports of debarkation in the U.S., Europe and the Pacific. From mobilization training and deployment support at installations, to moving thousands of pieces of equipment, to contracting support and sustaining the force, AMC had a huge role in the planning, execution and success of the DEFENDER series.
“AMC delivers logistics support, sustainment and materiel readiness from fort, depot and arsenal to the tactical edge, worldwide,” Daly said.
AMC is modernizing the materiel and installation enterprise alongside modernization of the Army’s weapon systems. From divesting legacy systems and retooling the Organic Industrial Base to prepare for new equipment, to embedding sustainers with Cross Functional Teams, AMC is lockstep with the Army’s modernization efforts.
“The Army is in the middle of transformational change and our senior leaders seized the moment to fully assess the force and implement changes at every echelon,” Daly said. “Across AMC, we have assumed new missions and divested others so that we are now 100% focused on leading and directing sustainment warfighting functions from the installation to the tactical edge to meet Army readiness requirements during competition, crisis, conflict and change.”
One area in which AMC is enabling modernization efforts is through the implementation of Modernization Displacement and Repair Sites at 14 installations across the nation. By providing Soldiers a place to drop off old equipment, MDRS supports the Regionally Aligned Readiness and Modernization Model, freeing up space for new, modernized equipment.
“This is one of the most important things AMC will do to support Army readiness in the next five years,” said Daly.
The goal of ReARMM is to integrate and synchronize force employment and modernization across the Total Army.
To ensure the Army’s Organic Industrial Base is modernized and prepared for large scale combat operations in a multi-domain environment, Daly set the path for a 15-year modernization strategy that will modernize facilities, processes and people to bring the OIB into the 21st century, infuse industry best practices and refine human resource management structures to maximize the skills and capabilities of the workforce.
“We are at an inflection point and we must accelerate our modernization plans for the next 15 years,” said Daly. “We all know the Army Senior Leader priorities of people, readiness and modernization. I firmly believe this effort affects all three.”
The Army OIB, consisting of 23 depots, arsenals and ammunition plants, manufactures, upgrades, maintains and resets Army equipment, and consists of more than $30 billion in facilities and infrastructure, much of which was built more than 70 years ago. While some of the sites have seen incremental modernization over the years, this is the first comprehensive approach in recent decades, said Daly.
“Now is the time to examine the OIB in terms of policy, execution and workload to ensure we are modernizing to achieve the right effects to take us through the next 40 years,” he said. “As Army leaders look at strategic readiness, what comes front and center is the OIB.”
Right now, an OIB Modernization Task Force is traveling to each of the 23 sites to discuss how the installation's approach to change aligns with AMC’s overarching strategy. The goal is for installations to demonstrate a clear vision for modernization and be poised for divestiture of legacy systems as well as sustainment of enduring and future systems.
While AMC continues to adapt to a changing global environment, it’s commitment to the Army priorities of people, readiness and modernization remains the top priority as the organization delivers logistics, sustainment and materiel readiness from the installation to the tactical edge.
(Editor’s Note: Megan Gully, Will King and Samantha Tyler contributed to this report.)