Developing Synergy Within the Naval Aviation Enterprise

BY LT. JASON POTVIN, SC, USN, NAVY SUPPLY CORPS SCHOOL

Above: The NSCS JASMMM team conducted a MTT at the Marine Corps Air Station Miramar, California, hosted by the 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing. Instructors from front to back: Lt. Jesse Epp, AZC David Shoemaker, LSC Christian Campos, and CWO4 Patrick Holland Jr., USMC (ret.).

Above: The NSCS JASMMM team conducted a MTT at the Marine Corps Air Station Miramar, California, hosted by the 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing. Instructors from front to back: Lt. Jesse Epp, AZC David Shoemaker, LSC Christian Campos, and CWO4 Patrick Holland Jr., USMC (ret.).

“No air support without ground support!”

This brief but empirically accurate phrase is frequently used throughout the fleet to emphasize the relationship between aviation and supporting activities. Naval aviation maintenance and supply have a rich history of collaboration, and it all began over a century ago. United States naval aviation was born on May 8, 1911 – over a century after the earliest form of the Supply Corps came into existence – with a requisition prepared by Capt. Washington Chambers for the Navy’s first aircraft, the Triad (A-1). Naval aviation has become an important part of the United States’ history and continues to serve as the cornerstone for freedom and democracy. As naval aviation has matured, so has the support structure for it, and the Supply Corps plays an integral role in that support. History has shown us over the years that little, if any, military operations can be executed effectively without proper logistical support. Naval aviation is no different, and adequate training is vital to ensuring the most impactful and efficient support is available. How does the Navy help ensure the worlds of aviation and the support community are aligned to optimize resources and operate most effectively? The answer: The Navy Supply Corps School’s (NSCS) Joint Aviation Supply and Maintenance Material Management (JASMMM) course.

As the Navy’s sole source for aviation logistics training for Supply officers, JASMMM seeks to improve aircraft readiness through the teamwork of maintenance and supply logisticians. The 10-day course develops technical, supervisory, and management skills in aviation support procedures. This engenders mutual awareness between maintenance and supply personnel for optimum weapon systems support. To provide this critical training to the Fleet, instructors must be experienced, enthusiastic, and highly committed. The NSCS JASMMM team is just that.

NSCS JASMMM instructors bring a wealth of knowledge and experience to the classroom. Lt. Jesse Epp, the current JASMMM Team Lead at NSCS, is an Aviation Maintenance duty officer with vast experience within the world of aviation logistics. Lt. Epp has served at duty stations such as the USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74), Carrier Airborne Command and Control Squadron One One Seven(VAW 117), Center for Naval Aviation Technical Training Detachment Norfolk, and VAW 116. At these commands, he served in the roles of Material Control Officer, Maintenance Material Control Officer, Assistance Maintenance Officer, Aircraft Intermediate Maintenance Department Quality Assurance Officer, and Intermediate Maintenance 2 Division Officer.

CWO4 Patrick Holland, U.S. Marine Corps (retired), has over 25 years of experience as an Aviation Supply Operations officer, serving with both 1st and 3rd Marine Aircraft Wings, Marine Aviation Logistics Squadron (MALS) 12, MALS 16, Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron 268C, 13th Marine Expeditionary Unit, MALS 11 and Marine Aircraft Group 11. He also served in non-fleet tours at Strike Fighter Squadron 125, Marine Aviation Training Support Group 23, both Marine Corps Detachment Athens, Georgia and Newport, Rhode Island, and at Naval Air Systems Command in the Maintenance and Supply Integration Performance Improvement Branch (6.7.2) as the Readiness and Supply Chain Management Strategy Lead.

The JASMMM team also provides invaluable perspectives from the Chief’s Mess. Logistics Specialist Chief (LSC) Christian Campos brings his knowledge and experience from Fleet Composite Squadron 6 Detachment Patuxent River, USS Kittyhawk (CV 63), Commander, Naval Air Forces Carrier Readiness Division, and USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70), Carrier Air Wing Seven. Aviation Maintenance Administrationman Chief (AZC) David Shoemaker has impressive aviation maintenance experience while serving with Air Test and Evaluation Squadron 30, Electronic Attack Squadron 131, and Special Projects Patrol Squadron TWO.

JASMMM is designed to train Navy and Marine Corps officers, chief petty officers, staff non-commissioned officers, first class petty officers, and civilian GS-6 (or equivalent) and above. Because participants are so diverse, the perspectives brought into the classroom cover a wide range, ultimately resulting in rich and enhancing learning opportunities. During the course, twenty-four maintenance and supply topics are covered utilizing case studies, practical labs and classroom exercises.

JASMMM places specific emphasis on leadership and management techniques through employment of practical exercises with follow-on guided discussions. Students are tasked to determine how to leverage tactical, operational, and strategic logistics elements to enhance support of Naval Aviation Enterprise (NAE) initiatives, while using applicable publications, doctrines, and logistics simulators. Emphasis is placed on the synergy and cohesiveness created through strong lines of communication built between logisticians from both maintenance and supply activities, specifically in the areas of naval aviation maintenance procedures, aviation funding, aviation calibration acquisition and provisioning, inventory management, inspections, training, and how the three levels of maintenance influence flight-line operations and readiness levels. As LSC Campos asserts, “JASMMM helps break down barriers between aircraft maintainers and logisticians. The more we understand each other, the more planes we put up in the air. Communication, coordination, and cooperation are key principles that both maintenance and supply have to foster in order to keep our aircraft flying.”

More than 120 students attend the course each year at NSCS. Additionally, the JASMMM Mobile Training Team (MTT) instructs, on average, 230 students a year; this is accomplished though the JASMMM staff traveling to off-site locations in order to teach the curriculum. MTT’s nearly double the attendance and provide significant savings in travel to the commands by allowing Sailors to attend these courses at a local venue. The JASMMM team convenes MTT’s in many Continental United States and Outside the Continental United States locations, from Norfolk to San Diego, and from Hawaii to Japan. Commanding officers may attend the commanding officer JASMMM course, also taught in an MTT format in Pensacola, Florida. This course specifically covers areas of aviation that include funding, material requisition, supply and maintenance support, as well as global aviation logistics and maintenance.

JASMMM continues to prepare Aviation Supply experts to optimize the synergy between maintenance and supply. According to Lt. Epp, “the only meaningful measure of an organization’s performance is how well it’s performing relative to its goal. With JASMMM, we attempt to equip students with the knowledge and tools necessary to apply that type of thinking to NAE logistics support.”

July/August 2016