News: DA civilian provides knowledge, mentorship to MK staff
Story by Staff Sgt. Alexander Burnett
MIHAIL KOGALNICEANU, Romania – At an early morning meeting on Mihail Kogalniceanu Airbase the attendees include Soldiers, Airmen, Marines, Sailors and contractors. In this sea of personnel however, there sits one Department of the Army civilian, and he brings a unique perspective to the table.
John Dewey, the 21st Theater Sustainment Command’s Regional Support Element deputy officer in charge, makes a daily impact to the MK Airbase mission by providing knowledge and mentorship to the staff.
Dewey, a native of Minneapolis, became part of the RSE-21 staff in March of this year, an addition to the staff made by Col. Chris Brookie, the RSE-21 officer in charge and a native of Ware Shoals, S.C.
“When I reviewed the personnel slots at MK Airbase prior to my arrival this year, I noticed there was a gap,” Brookie said. “The RSE-21 officer in charge is constantly at meetings, engaging distinguished visitors and talking with our Romanian counterparts. Having a deputy brings an element of continuity to the staff.”
Dewey, who is also a colonel in the Army Reserves, quickly integrated himself in all staff functions. His primary mission as the deputy OIC is to coordinate military staff leaders and ensure they accomplish their tasks according to schedule. He also chairs and mentors several working groups, which bring members of different branches of service together to accomplish their united missions.
“Mr. Dewey doesn’t just bring us together as staff members, he also gives us valuable advice and tangible benchmarks during our working groups,” said Sgt. 1st Class Jean A. Jacquet, the RSE-21 force protection noncommissioned officer in charge and a native of Miami. “His experience as a DA civilian and an Army officer give him a unique ability when it comes to keeping members of multiple branches of service on target.”
Another of Dewey’s accomplishments is the establishment of the joint acquisition review board. As requirements at MK Airbase are identified, the JARB investigates all avenues of fulfilling those needs locally before sending them to a higher headquarters. This process ensures fiscal responsibility and that all resources are used to their fullest extent, said Brookie.
Finally, Dewey is spearheading the creation of a joint operations center for the airbase.
“The creation of the JOC is a very important step for MK Airbase,” Dewey said. “It gives all the members on the installation a single location for the exchange of information and to manage operations. Once it is up and running, it will be the powerhouse on MK.”
Dewey will return to his position at the 21st TSC in Kaiserslautern, Germany, in June. He says he enjoyed the experience he gained in Romania and hopes the work will continue after he departs.
“This has been an incredible learning experience and it has been an honor to serve alongside the Soldiers, sailors, airmen and marines stationed here,” Dewey said. “Since the 21st TSC took over the regional support mission it has grown and improved. I know that the mission will continue to get better.”