Aviation Center Logistics Command sends division chief off to Army War College

By Jim Hughes, Fort Novosel Public AffairsJuly 11, 2023

Durham (Photo Credit: Army photo) VIEW ORIGINAL

FORT NOVOSEL, Ala. -- The Aviation Center Logistics Command family is sending one of its own off to college – Army War College, that is.

Patricia J. Durham, ACLC Logistics Division chief who has worked on post for more than 30 years, will soon depart Fort Novosel for Carlisle Barracks, Pennsylvania, to attend the Army school that describes itself on its website as a place that educates and develops leaders for service at the strategic level while advancing knowledge in the global application of “Landpower.”

Army War College officials also wrote on the facility’s website that the college’s duty to the Army is to act as a “Think Factory” for commanders and civilian leaders at the strategic level worldwide, and routinely engage in discourse and debate on ground forces' role in achieving national security objectives.

Durham said she’s “excited and a little scared,” about this new step in her career, which, upon completion, will lead her to an assignment elsewhere.

“I’m not known for sitting back or being in the shadows – I want to be a change agent, to make a difference,” she said. “After working on Fort Novosel for 30 years, I can see opportunities for changes in maintenance, contracts, property management or daily mission data analytics. I would like to study, research and provide the analysis to recommend some of those changes.”

Typically, when one reads an article about someone who’s worked at a place for 30-plus years, the focus is on them wrapping things up. Not so with Durham.

“Our commands, the Army and America need us – don’t sit back and retire on active duty,” she said. “Seek out the change that is offered. My command has supported me in branching out and doing many things – from producing a YouTube video for the reduction of damage to UH-72 aircraft ($6 million in savings), to leading the transition of foreign aircraft (MI-17) from Fort Bliss to Fort Novosel, to the divestment of the MI-17, OH58A/C and the TH-67 aircraft via sales returning over $20 million to USAACE. You can do anything if you show drive, desire and determination.”

Tildon K. “Kye” Allen, deputy to the commander for ACLC, feels the Army War College made a wise selection in Durham.

“Trish is a passionate, persistent and caring employee with a big heart who doesn’t give up until she solves the problem or issue at hand,” he said, adding that he feels she was also selected because of her “intellect and unwavering dedication to the Army’s mission. She will be an asset to the Department of the Army in her future roles.”

As the chief of the ACLC Logistics Management Division for the past 16 years, Durham managed the Supply Support, Property Facilities, Environmental and Aircraft Component Repair branches.

“These branches support the contract oversight for the Army’s largest maintenance services contract,” she said. “I ensure that items needed for contract maintenance support is available to meet the daily U.S. Army Aviation Center of Excellence training mission.”

The Lawrenceburg, Tennessee, native met her husband, Mark, in her hometown and moved to then-Fort Rucker in 1981. She entered federal service when they moved to Hawaii as a small contracts officer. In 1989, they moved back to then-Fort Rucker where she joined the directorate of logistics, and then just kept moving up and learning all she could about logistics.

Along her way up the career ladder, she developed her philosophy for success.

“Active learning – never stop! I was 56 years old when I received my bachelor’s degree and 58 years old when I obtained my master’s,” she said. “The degree progression was from Army degree completion program Career Acquisition Management Program scholarship funding.”

Although this next step is exciting to Durham, she said she is going to miss her ACLC family and Fort Novosel teammates.

“I would like to thank everyone – I would not have learned what I did without the eagerness of the USAACE and U.S. Army Aviation and Missile Command G-3, G-8, G-4, G-1, directorate of public works and Logistics Readiness Center team bringing me in and helping me understand the why,” she said. “They made me who I am today, which provided me this opportunity to learn at the Army War College to understand the big Army why. I’m forever grateful.

“I will never forget my ACLC family – the team that launches 500-plus aircraft every day,” Durham added. “My most fond memory is seeing the number of new aviators going into Allen Stage Field every morning – you are the warfighting spirit that makes us strong.”