JRF Leadership Gather for Annual Meeting, Focus on Meeting Agency’s Needs

BY U.S. AIR FORCE RESERVE MAJ. BRYAN LEWIS PUBLIC AFFAIRS OFFICER DEFENSE LOGISTICS AGENCY JOINT RESERVE FORCE

More than 50 Sailors joined soldiers, Marines, Airmen and civilians from across the Defense Logistics Agency (DLA) for the Joint Reserve Force’s (JFR) annual
Combined Drill Weekend held Jun. 27-28 at the McNamara Headquarters Complex, Fort Belvoir, Virginia.

Rear Adm. Ron MacLaren, director of Defense Logistics Agency Joint Reserve Force, speaks during the Combined Drill Weekend June 27 at the McNamara Headquarters Complex, Fort Belvoir. Virginia. JRF members from throughout DLA attended the two-day event, which focused on readiness, training and operational support to DLA. – photo by MSgt. Scott Mathews

Rear Adm. Ron MacLaren, director of Defense Logistics Agency Joint
Reserve Force, speaks during the Combined Drill Weekend June 27 at the
McNamara Headquarters Complex, Fort Belvoir. Virginia. JRF members
from throughout DLA attended the two-day event, which focused on readiness,
training and operational support to DLA. – photo by MSgt. Scott Mathews

DLA Director Air Force Lt. Gen. Andy Busch opened the event by asking attendees to raise their hands if they’ve deployed, which resulted in a room full of raised hands.

“It goes without saying that ‘Warfighter First’ is why we are here,” Busch said. “It’s why all 26,000 of us come to work and based on your impressive deployment histories I don’t need to tell you that. Mission readiness and responsiveness is what we need to continue to do. We need to protect the reputation that DLA has – that we’re always there, that we’re not just a parts store. We provide logistics solutions and provide them wherever the warfighters want us to.”

Busch continued by highlighting DLA’s vision, mission and strategic plan to include the role the Reserve component fills for DLA and the nation. Joining him in his direction for continuing DLA’s exceptional reputation by always being ready was Rear Adm. Ron MacLaren, DLA JRF director.

“What’s the definition of ‘Reserve?’” asked MacLaren. “When needed, we go. There’s a saying when I used to run hospitals in my civilian life: ‘the good, they get better. The better, they become the best, but the best never let it rest.’ That’s all about continued process improvement because you are never there. You are always going to be working on what can make us better, what can keep us on the top.”

Composed of 662 service members from the Navy, Army, Air Force and Marines, the JRF currently has more than 50 members mobilized with more than 1,500 mobilizations since 9/11. Reserve Sailors have logged more than 110,000 man-days of operational and contributory support since Sept. 11, 2001, to include more than 660 deployments. Though small compared to the 26,000 employees in DLA, the JRF averages 50 percent of deployed DLA members, and this has been as high as 80 percent.

DLA Director Air Force Lt. Gen. Andy Busch addresses members of the Joint Reserve Force from throughout DLA during the Combined Drill Weekend Jun. 27 at the McNamara Headquarters Complex, Fort Belvoir, Virginia. JRF members attended the two-day event, which focused on readiness, training and operational support to DLA. - photo by MSgt. Scott Mathews

DLA Director Air Force Lt. Gen. Andy
Busch addresses members of the Joint
Reserve Force from throughout DLA
during the Combined Drill Weekend
Jun. 27 at the McNamara Headquarters
Complex, Fort Belvoir, Virginia. JRF
members attended the two-day event,
which focused on readiness, training
and operational support to DLA. – photo by MSgt. Scott Mathews

“When I go out to the field you are indistinguishable from the active duty folks that are out there, and that is an incredible reflection on your professionalism,” said Busch. “I expect you to stay connected and understand what the issues are. I expect you to work your individual readiness all the time. That includes your physical fitness; that includes all the elements of resiliency that go beyond physical fitness.”

Throughout the weekend, Joint team leaders, executive officers and training officers put emphasis on maintaining these standards, while also breaking into focus groups aiming to continue to improve readiness, training and operational support to DLA.

“We are here to drive where we need to be,” said MacLaren. “The last 15 years, especially, you’ve done a great job, and I know you’ll continue to do a great job. What’s our vision for the next 20 years? Let’s work toward our plan and establish how we get there.”

July/August 2015