AMC’s top leader emphasizes command’s critical warfighting role

By Samantha TylerJanuary 23, 2024

(Photo Credit: U.S. Army) VIEW ORIGINAL

REDSTONE ARSENAL, Ala. – Gen. Charles Hamilton, Army Materiel Command commanding general, addressed the AMC workforce virtually Jan. 19 during a global town hall where he stressed the criticality of the work AMC employees do every day to support and sustain the Army.

“You’re the insurance policy for the nation – whether you’re supporting the U.S. Army or the joint force,” he said. “Nothing happens in the Army without AMC. You’re a big part of what the Army does, and I can’t overemphasize the impact you have.”

Hamilton said he has been observing AMC since he was a captain, and when he thinks about what AMC represents, the answer is clear.

“What AMC is for is to provide sustainment, not only for the greatest land force, but the global force,” he said. “Sustainment – make no bones about it – is about warfighting, period.”

AMC relies on a global workforce of around 165,000 military, Army Civilian and contractor employees – many of whom have highly developed specialties in maintenance, manufacturing and logistics. After Hamilton assumed command in March 2023, AMC’s mission and vision were refined to reflect the predictive and precision sustainment that the data-centric Army of the future will leverage.

“With all the technology and all the automation, our adversaries on a daily basis are moving out with predictive and precision logistics,” Hamilton said. “We have to embrace the technology, embrace the training to get us there, and make sure we’re on par and better than our adversaries.”

AMC is already making great strides in this area, as seen in operations supporting Ukraine. Through remote tele-maintenance operations, AMC has supported the repair and maintenance of multiple weapon systems and has established a theater supply support activity with more than 5,290 lines of repair parts valued at $65.3 million. In addition, AMC has shipped more than $13.9 billion in equipment and supplies including nearly 25,500 major end items like armored vehicles, artillery and more. Shipments have relied on the efforts of more than 30 installations, arsenals, depots and ammunition plants within the AMC enterprise.

Because of the enterprise’s capabilities, Chief of Staff of the Army Gen. Randy George has charged AMC with his focus area to Deliver Ready Combat Formations, which means getting Soldiers and what they need to the fight – anywhere in the world – and sustaining them there, along with taking care of them and their families. AMC’s five lines of efforts in support of this focus area include:

  • Soldier, civilian and family readiness;
  • Posture the Joint Strategic Support Area;
  • Position the Defense Industrial Base;
  • Prepare the theaters; and
  • Transform the Sustainment Warfighting Function.

AMC is leading the way in several efforts to Deliver Ready Combat Formations, from data analytics to strategic plans aimed at improving infrastructure, like the Facilities Investment Plan and the Organic Industrial Base Modernization Implementation Plan. In addition, the Chief of Staff of the Army charged AMC with piloting the Rapid Removal of Excess program, aimed at increasing equipment-on-hand readiness. In this program, Soldiers have been turning in excess items ranging from small electronics and general supplies to military vehicles. This equipment will either be repaired at a depot, turned over to Defense Logistics Agency or supplied for foreign military sales.

Across these efforts, the goal is to continue supporting the warfighter and giving combatant commanders what they need to be successful.

“We’ve got to maintain this at a really high bar, to make sure sustainment is about warfighting and not a byproduct,” Hamilton said.

In tandem, AMC is recruiting and supporting a high-caliber workforce. The command is examining how it is bringing in talent, looking for areas to improve and making changes to attract the best minds.

“At the end of the day, without people, all the things I’ve talked about don’t work,” he said “We’ve got to make sure we have a great talent management system. It must be second to none.”

Hamilton also stressed that AMC is not letting up on training, from opportunities to train young supervisors transitioning into leadership roles to training aimed at making AMC more data centric. AMC’s Senior Enlisted Advisor Command Sgt. Maj. Jimmy Sellers also talked about the development for enlisted personnel, highlighting tools like the Sustainment Leader Rucksack and the Sustainment Initiatives Guide.

“The Sustainment Initiatives Guide brings everything together about what we need to do to be ready on day one,” Sellers said. “We have to be multifunctional in what we do.”

Sellers also highlighted the importance of archiving and writing about challenges and lessons learned.

“We need to take time and make sure we have professional discourse in our profession,” he said.

Throughout the town hall, Hamilton and Sellers thanked the workforce for its support, which is not going unnoticed.

“There isn’t a single time when I walk into a room that someone doesn’t express sincere thanks for what AMC does,” Sellers said.

Hamilton echoed the importance of logistics and sustainment.

“There is not a leader in the Army that is not talking about sustainment,” Hamilton said. “To all of AMC, this is just designed to really say thank you. Your impact on the army and the global force is really tremendous.”