SAN ANTONIO -- When I took command of the Installation Management Command in November 2009, we set out to validate that we were doing the right things and doing things right, and to find better ways of doing business.

This self-evaluation was particularly important at the time, as the Army was focused on finding the right kinds and levels of support for Soldiers and Families stressed by repeated and extended deployments.

First we started expanding our identity. Today when we talk about providing for Soldier, Civilian and Family quality of life, we don't just mean the Installation Management Command--we mean the Installation Management Community, which also includes the office of the assistant chief of staff for installation management and the offices of the assistant secretaries of the Army for installations, energy and environment, and manpower and reserve affairs.

And then we started to focus the talent and expertise of this diverse community on our common goal: providing Soldiers, Civilians and Families with a quality of life commensurate with their service

In March 2010 we published version 1 of the Installation Management Campaign Plan, which outlines how we provide the facilities, infrastructure, programs and services required to support Soldier, Civilian and Family readiness and well-being. Since then, each update has reflected a stronger sense of community and more robust strategy for addressing the challenges we face.

Over the past two years the IMC has reviewed programs, services and infrastructure in areas such as child care, youth development, housing, education, employment, recreation and behavioral health. As a result, a number of programs and services have been enhanced, to include Survivor Outreach Services, the Exceptional Family Member Program, the Army Community Service, Child, Youth and School Services, the Army Substance Abuse Program, the Total Army Sponsorship Program, the Army Career and Alumni Program, and Soldier and Family Assistance Centers.

At the same time that we have enhanced the effectiveness of programs, services and infrastructure, we have worked to improve the efficiency of delivery at every level, starting from the top.

As we moved IMCOM's headquarters from Virginia to Texas under Base Realignment and Closure, we also integrated a subcommand, the Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation Command, into the headquarters, and reduced from seven to four regions worldwide. In doing so, we reduced overhead costs and streamlined delivery of services to our customers.

Even as we are addressing today's fiscal challenges, we are looking to the future and how we will support the Army of 2020. Through BRAC, our installations have built and renovated facilities to support the reshaped Army. Through initiatives such as Army Net Zero, our installations are developing sustainable practices to ensure we will continue to have the resources to accomplish our mission. Through improved knowledge management, we continue to strengthen our shared understanding of how to operate in a dynamic environment in ways that save time and money.

And we continue to invest in our most important asset: our people. Through a new command-wide approach to talent management and workforce development, we are making sure we will have in place the right people with the right skills to take on future challenges.

The IMC has a huge impact on the lives of Soldiers, Civilians and Families--on how we work, train, live and play. The immediate resource challenges only intensify our focus on the mission. We are dedicated to doing our best in serving Soldiers and Families today--and we will find ways to serve even better tomorrow.