News: 13th SC(E) hosts expeditionary sustainment command conference
Story by Maj. Joseph Odorizzi
FORT HOOD, Texas – The 13th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary) hosted an Expeditionary Sustainment Command conference with leadership from two Army National Guard and one Army Reserve sustainment commands March 20 at the unit’s headquarters building.
Senior leadership from the 135th Expeditionary Sustainment Command, Alabama National Guard, the 184th Expeditionary Sustainment Command, Mississippi National Guard, and the 4th Expeditionary Sustainment Command, an Army reserve unit from San Antonio, participated in the two-day conference. The purpose of the conference was to synchronize sustainment functions across the four units in order to leverage training opportunities and solidify professional relationships.
“The conference complies with the Total Army Force policy set forth by the Chief of Staff of the Army,” said Col. Keith Sledd, deputy commander of the 13th SC(E). “We hope to gain an understanding of capabilities, highlight and establish training opportunities, and gain an understanding of the differences and similarities between active, reserve and National Guard component ESCs.”
The Total Army Force policy, signed by Secretary of the Army John McHugh on Sept. 4, 2012, integrates the Army's three main components and represents the realization of the total force concept. Its goal is to facilitate a more balanced total force and ensure that the three components learn and build upon experiences gained in the last decade of war.
“This was an excellent opportunity to interact with points of contact from the other ESCs and exchange ideas between commanders and staffs,” said Lt. Col. Mark Holland, operations officer for the 135th ESC. “I hope that we can establish regular teleconferences and training synchronization opportunities to build upon the relationships we established here.”
The conference began March 19 with a social event at a local barbeque restaurant in Harker Heights. The bulk of the conference was held in the 13th SC(E) conference room on March 20 with breakout sessions held in the afternoon to discuss various topics; command and control, training opportunities, lessons learned and logistics support.
Based on discussions held at the conference, officers from the 13th SC(E) operations section attended the 4th ESC’s yearly training brief in San Antonio. This is the type of interaction that leadership from the four units hopes to increase moving forward.
“We hope to hold an event like this at least annually, if not semi-annually,” said Sledd. “At a minimum, we would like to conduct it by video teleconference, but we would also like to hold it at rotating locations in the future to visit each unit’s footprint.”