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    A Navy Unicorn Serves DoD at Camp Lemonnier in East Africa

    A Navy Unicorn Serves DoD at Camp Lemonnier in East Africa

    Photo By Petty Officer 1st Class Randi Brown | U.S. Navy Logistics Specialist 1st Class Douglas Ness, of Brockton, Mass., supervises...... read more read more

    He refers to himself as a unicorn because finding someone like him is in his line of work is like finding a mystical creature. They are rare or simply don’t exist. Douglas Ness, of Brockton, Mass., serves the Department of Defense in more than one capacity. He actually serves in three.

    Ness, better known by his mates as Logistics Specialist 1st Class, is deployed to Camp Lemonnier, Djibouti (CLDJ), serving in the Supply – Procurement department as the Assistant Installation Accountable Property Officer.

    Camp Lemonnier is strategically located – close to the Bab al-Mandab Strait, at the south end of the Red Sea. Camp Lemonnier helps U.S., allied and partner nation forces maintain security in Europe, Africa and Southwest Asia.

    When Ness is not thousands of miles away in a combat zone, he is a Navy Reservist assigned to the Defense Contract Management Agency East office out of Manassas, Va. In this role, he trains contracting officers using his civilian experience.

    When Ness is simply “Doug,” he serves the DoD as an Administrative Contracting Officer with the Defense Contracting Management Agency. In this role, he and signs contracts for all branches of service. He reviews and oversees contractors’ payment, negotiations and the contract terms. Ness is the quality review.

    “LS1 has been particularly valuable to the DCMA Reserve unit. First of all, he executes the unit mission as a warranted civilian with expertise,” says U.S. Navy Cmdr. Justin Doster, Defense Contract Management Agency East commanding officer. “Ness has trained members of our unit to provide valuable operational support on his drill weekends. Local expertise is critical in contract support. With LS1's help, the unit functions as an augmented support unit -- doing valuable work. In the end, we are more effective and more productive thanks to LS1.”

    The conglomerate of these experiences is what makes him, well . . . the unicorn.

    Overseeing millions of dollars of goods is not out of Ness’ realm. For example, he is assisting camp with weekly inbound shipments of fresh food valued at over $250,000 each.

    “As of right now, only LS1 knows how to do the job of supervising and escorting the food stores from the flight line to the warehouse,” explains Chief Logistics Specialist Tiffany Sullivan, of Camp Lemonnier’s Supply Department. “The job takes a lot a patience and attention to detail. LS1 does a great job with balancing all of his responsibilities. He wears many hats and is a vital member of the team.”

    When not out on the flight line securing safe deliveries, he is responsible for reviewing supply management of more than 20 offices at Camp Lemonnier. This can be anything from a stapler to a forklift.

    “I was trained for many things,” said Ness. “The property inventory management book, for example, that’s a DCMA function. I had to go manage that here, at Camp Lemonnier, as an Alternate Installation Accountable Property Officer IAPO.”

    Ness adds while he is not a property book manager at DCMA, his knowledge of contracts related to this topic, and the performance work statement (PWS) document, allowed him to slide right in and support the base in this capacity.

    With his knowledge of contracts, he assisted with accounting for about 9,000 Information Technology (IT) items belonging to CLDJ, tenant commands and operational offices on base. He went into every office, in every space and counted every monitor and hard drive across the whole base. It was a monumental task.

    Resource accountability ultimately results in saving the government money by keeping track of what we have and if it works properly. It’s a theme in the unicorn’s work patterns: he saves the people around him money.

    He has also helped to establish procedures for people who will serve in the future. He values leaving a legacy of good work behind him.

    “LS1’s predecessor left about a month before he arrived,” says Sullivan. “He will be able to train his replacement. This is a really big value to our department – and the entire camp.”

    All around, the Navy is lucky to have Ness on their side. With an enlisted Sailor’s experience working in the Supply office, he provides user knowledge and views. As a DCMA Administrating Officer role, his assessment and review of final contracts provides a higher-angle view of the chain. He knows when contracts and players are in line and taken care of. Lastly, because he knows the highest and lowest levels, he is an ideal trainer at the DCMA East Reserve Component. There is no questioning that he is equipped to teach Navy Reserve contracting officers how to put the contracts in order.

    He also can contribute to the team in a joint environment -- like at Camp Lemonnier.

    “I’m a one of a kind,” says Ness, proudly. “I’m like that unicorn in the Navy. There are no enlisted warranted contracting officers. I am a one of one.”



    Date Taken: 06.30.2021
    Date Posted: 06.17.2021 02:41
    Story ID: 398058
    Location: CAMP LEMONNIER, DJ 
    Hometown: BROCKTON, MA, US

    Web Views: 1,085
    Downloads: 0