NEW CUMBERLAND, PENNSYLVANIA -- Chilean Lt. Gen. Cristian Roberto Guedelhoefer, Defense & Military Attaché of Chile to U.S. traveled to New Cumberland to meet with the Security Assistance Command. His visit marked a momentous occasion, as the general became the highest ranking member of the Chilean Army to ever visit the USASAC Pennsylvania office.
The main reason for the general’s trip to USASAC was to celebrate the accomplishments of the current Chilean Security Assistance Liaison Officer, Lt. Col. Gonzalo Tisi. Tisi successfully completed his tour of duty as a SALO Officer and was honored during a USASAC farewell ceremony before officially returning home.
The visit also included Guedelhoefer and his team meeting with USASAC senior leadership to discuss security assistance topics specific to the Chilean program.
After touring the USASAC facilities, the group discussed the SALO program. Terra Good, SALO program manager discussed the advantages a country gains by having a SALO, and the role the Chilean SALO officer plays in their country’s current foreign military sales cases.
Chile, like many other countries that participate in the SALO Program, assigns an officer on a rotational basis. Once the officer is assigned to USASAC, they are given access to U.S. government systems that provide a real advantage in regards to tracking all of their Army related FMS cases. SALO assignments are a minimum of 18 months and can extend beyond three years.
Guedelhoefer made the journey from Washington, D.C., to share his support by attending the farewell ceremony, and by doing so, became the first 3-star general of a foreign military to attend their SALO officer’s farewell ceremony.
The general’s participation was not surprising when considering the man being honored. “Our SALO officers have a habit of becoming valued and beloved members of our SALO community and Gonzo [Tisi] was no different,” said Good.
“Lt. Col. Tisi represented his country superbly and worked to improve transparency and relationships between the U.S. and Chile with regards to foreign military sales. Lt. Gen. Guedelhoefer’s attendance highlights the importance and value a SALO adds to the FMS process,” Good said.
After the ceremony, Guedelhoefer spoke with several other SALO officers, took pictures to commemorate the event, and imparted some kind words to the former Chilean SALO before departing for Washington.
Tisi will return to Santiago, Chile and serve in his Army’s procurement division. SALOs like Tisi are a vital component of the FMS process and helps bolster the U.S. Army’s security assistance mission. For more information about the SALO program and FMS operations, visit www.army.mil/usasac.