Military News

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Joy after Tragedy

Editor's Note: Program will be of interest to military families, as well.

On September 25, 2009, Conversations with American Heroes at the Watering Hole will feature a conversation with Sharon Knutson-Felix has served as Executive Director of the 100 Club of Arizona.

Program Date: September 25, 2009
Program Time: 2100 hours, Pacific
Topic: Joy after Tragedy
Listen Live:
http://www.blogtalkradio.com/LawEnforcement/2009/09/26/Joy-after-Tragedy

About the Guest
Sharon Knutson-Felix has served as Executive Director of the 100 Club of Arizona since 2001 but her first experience with the 100 Club came several years before, in 1998, when Sharon’s husband, DPS Officer Doug Knutson, was tragically killed in the line of duty. She received a check from an amazing organization that’s mission was to support the families of public safety in times of tragedy, which she found out was the 100 Club of Arizona. Having been a recipient, Sharon truly understands what the 100 Club’s benefits, both financial and emotional, mean to a public safety family in a time of crisis. She has become a passionate advocate of the 100 Club since becoming its Executive Director and has been instrumental in its recent growth.

Sharon’s experience in dealing with public safety and her commitment to supporting its men and women position her as the ideal leader for this public safety non-profit. Since being elected as the Executive Director, Sharon has led the organization to create and launch six new benefits and programs, including the non-line of duty death benefit and the safety enhancement stipend program which provides equipment to public safety agencies in an effort to prevent or minimize tragedy. Yearly benefits given out have increased from $100,000 in 2001 to over $800,000 in 2008. Membership has more than doubled and corporate sponsorships have increased phenomenally, including securing the largest corporate sponsorships in the history of the 100 Club.

Before coming to the 100 Club of Arizona , Sharon served two years as President of Arizona Concerns of Police Survivors (COPS) which provides resources to help families of
law enforcement officers who have been killed in the line of duty rebuild their lives. She has also served, and continues to serve, in many community support groups. For the past nine years, Sharon has been a part of the Arizona Critical Incident Stress Management Team (CISM), a group that provides emotional support for public safety officers (and their families) who have been injured in the line of duty so that they may continue to serve their community in a law enforcement capacity. She has also been a part of her church support group, Soulcare Ministry, for the past four years that provides a system of peer support for people in the community dealing with difficult issues and tough life decisions.

Knutson-Felix is also the author of the successful book, Gifts My Father Gave Me: Finding Joy after Tragedy that is part memoir and part grief advisor. Sharon is also a sought after speaker and grief counselor. She is the wife of DPS Executive Officer David Felix, the loving mother of two children, and grandmother of five grandkids.

About the Watering Hole
The Watering Hole is
Police slang for a location cops go off-duty to blow off steam and talk about work and life. Sometimes funny; sometimes serious; but, always interesting.

About the Host
Lieutenant Raymond E. Foster was a sworn member of the Los Angeles Police Department for 24 years. He retired in 2003 at the rank of Lieutenant. He holds a bachelor’s from the Union Institute and University in
Criminal Justice Management and a Master’s Degree in Public Financial Management from California State University, Fullerton; and, has completed his doctoral course work. Raymond E. Foster has been a part-time lecturer at California State University, Fullerton and Fresno; and is currently a Criminal Justice Department chair, faculty advisor and lecturer with the Union Institute and University. He has experience teaching upper division courses in Law Enforcement, public policy, Public Safety Technology and leadership. Raymond is an experienced author who has published numerous articles in a wide range of venues including magazines such as Government Technology, Mobile Government, Airborne Law Enforcement Magazine, and Police One. He has appeared on the History Channel and radio programs in the United States and Europe as subject matter expert in technological applications in Law Enforcement.

Listen, call, join us at the Watering Hole:
http://www.blogtalkradio.com/LawEnforcement/2009/09/26/Joy-after-Tragedy

Program Contact Information
Lieutenant Raymond E. Foster, LAPD (ret.), MPA
editor@police-writers.com
909.599.7530

Keating Reflects on POW/MIA Mission Ahead of Retirement

By John J. Kruzel
American Forces Press Service

July 23, 2009 - Nearing the end of his 42-year career in the Navy, Adm. Timothy J. Keating today reflected on those who served alongside him, giving special emphasis to troops whose fates remain unknown. Keating, the commander of U.S. Pacific Command, addressed the National League of POW/MIA Families, a group that strives to account for the more than 1,750 veterans of Vietnam and other wars still missing.

"We're going to do whatever it takes, with appropriate support, to have you reach some sort of conclusion in your minds and in your hearts as to where your loved one is," he said at the group's 40th anniversary annual meeting. "We're not going to rest."

For the 90 days until his retirement from active duty, Keating is slated to remain at the helm of the U.S. Pacific Command in Hawaii, which also serves as headquarters of a task force responsible for POW/MIA accounting.

Keating told the audience that the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command does everything in its power to provide accountability.

"We want to be able to do that last muster," he said. "If not present, then accounted for. Nothing's more important to us."

The admiral paced the room and spoke without prepared notes, delivering an address filled with colorful anecdotes about his years in uniform and the personnel – ranking above, beside and below him – who shaped his military career.

"I'm proud to wear a couple of these ribbons because they recommend a certain period of service, a certain caliber of men and women," he said, pointing to the patchwork of military ribbons and honors on his chest.

"Now make no mistake, the kids you see around us this morning – the young professionals you see around us this morning – they're the best military, the best armed forces the world has ever known," he added. "I get to go to work with them every day, they keep us moving.

"But I'm reminded of great Americans who saluted...and off they went, and they haven't come back yet," he said.

Referring to the iconic black-and-white POW/MIA flag that features the silhouette of a servicemember set against a prison camp backdrop, Keating called the banner emblematic of commitment and honor.

"It's a symbol of your commitment, your honor, your courage and we pay close attention to that," he told the audience. "Each of your names, and the names of your loved ones – the name of the guy or girl that causes you to be in this room today – your names will be written in gold in the pages of history. You have earned that privilege."

National Guard Daughters Plan 'Sisterhood' Conference

By Army Master Sgt. Julie Avey
Special to American Forces Press Service

July 23, 2009 - Two California teenagers are honoring National Guard parents who have had travel to overseas locations or natural disasters at home in a project they have named "Sisterhood of the Traveling BDUs." BDUs is military shorthand for the battle-dress uniform.

The goal of the project -- inspired by the 2005 movie "The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants," in which four girlfriends develop a plan to stay connected -- is to bring military daughters from across California together to share their experiences as military family members.

Moranda Hern, 17, daughter of Air Force Lt. Col. Rick Hern of the 144th Fighter Wing, and Kaylei Deakin, 16, daughter of Army Maj. Lorren Deakin of the 578th Engineer Battalion, plan to host a Military Girls Conference in Clovis, Calif., March 12 to 14. They hope 400 teens and 100 female servicemembers will attend the event.

"The conference will bring dependent girls from all [military] units in California together and link them ... to share all of their experiences," Deakin said.

The teenagers said they hope to help other servicemembers' daughters by sharing their own experiences.

Hern and Deakin grew up differently, but connected as friends with common experiences, they said, which is what they want to show others through the project.

"At the conference, we want to connect on a deep level with our sisters by removing the mask and being a teenage girl," Hern said.

Their experience as daughters in National Guard families is the teenagers' common bond. They met at a National Guard Bureau symposium in St. Louis last year, and together they realized they had similar experiences as Guard children. For example, they noted, they did not live on a base like other military children, but they still dealt with a parent leaving on deployments or for natural disasters.

They put their thoughts and feelings together, they recalled, and started realizing that they could make a difference in each other's lives and that they were feeling real emotions. They helped each other grow, get better grades and build each other's self-esteem.

Once they focused their energy toward building positive experiences as daughters of servicemembers, they said, they found more opportunities.

Last fall, Hern and Deakin briefed their Military Girls conference ideas to Air Force Brig. Gen. Mary J. Kight, California's assistant adjutant general, and Leslie Wade, wife of Army Maj. Gen. William H. Wade II, the state's adjutant general. In April, at the Adjutant General's Symposium on Family Readiness in Burlingame, Calif., the teenagers tugged on the audience's heart strings as they briefed their plans for next year's conference.

As a part of the briefing, they shared their childhood experiences as the daughters of Guard members. Noting how family separation can affect families, they said they struggled with their grades and self-image, but added that although their experiences sometimes were troubling, they also could be positive and full of opportunity.

Deakin received the National Teen Leadership Program's National Teen Leadership Award for spearheading an after-school club for military children at her high school, and Hern was honored with the Air National Guard Youth of the Year award. Now, they said, they want to continue making a difference by sharing how being a military child has opened up opportunities for them.

Topics for discussion at the "Sisterhood" conference will include college applications, self-defense, making decisions and setting goals. After the conference, Hern and Deakin said, they plan to use social networking tools such as Facebook, YouTube and Twitter to maintain the bonds they expect to grow at the conference.

They also plan to travel throughout California to interview military daughters for a video production, and they said they'd like to create public service announcements about military children.

(Army Master Sgt. Julie Avey serves with the California National Guard public affairs office.)

Unmanned Aircraft Take on Increased Importance

By Gerry J. Gilmore
American Forces Press Service

July 23, 2009 - The U.S. military's expanded overseas use of unmanned aircraft highlights the increased importance of such aerial platforms to current and future military operations, senior Air Force officers said here today. The Unmanned Aircraft Systems Flight Plan announced today will serve as a template for how the Air Force will look in 2047 – the 100th anniversary of the U.S. Air Force -- Gen. William M. Fraser III, the Air Force's vice chief of staff, told reporters at a Pentagon news conference.

"The future of our systems is really now," Fraser said. "The Air Force today looks dramatically different than it did 35 years ago when I first came aboard on active duty."

The flight plan, he explained, lays out the Air Force's "vision for maximizing our efforts in unmanned aerial systems" today and in the future.

"We'll continue to push the UAS envelope," Fraser said, adding that unmanned systems are unmanned in name only.

"While there may be no airmen onboard the actual vehicle, there indeed are airmen involved in every step of the process," Fraser said, including the pilots who operate the vehicles' remote controls and sensors and maintenance personnel.

Unmanned aircraft systems "represent an important addition to our comprehensive set of Air Force capabilities that actually define air power," Fraser said.

Lt. Gen. David A. Deptula, the Air Force's deputy chief of staff for intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance, told reporters that unmanned aircraft systems have proven effective during aerial strike missions against insurgents in Afghanistan and Pakistan, while also performing surveillance and intelligence-gathering missions.

Persistent flight capability, Deptula said, is one of the advantages of employing unmanned aerial vehicles in military missions.

"What UASs bring to the table," Deptula explained, "is the ability to stay in position or maneuver over large areas for a long period of time – that's where a person in an aircraft becomes a limitation."

UAS mission success rates have resulted in high demand for the unmanned aerial platforms, Deptula said, noting that high- and medium-altitude UAS overseas combat missions have increased more than 600 percent during the past six years.

"What the Air Force wants to do," Deptula said, "is to get the most out of these systems to increase our joint warfighting capability, while promoting service interdependency and the wisest use of our taxpayer dollars."

Yet, Deptula said, the flight plan isn't just about how UASs are employed today, but also about how unmanned aerial technology could be applied in different mission realms in order to confront future challenges. For example, he said, UAS technology could one day be used in a modular platform that could perform a variety of tasks, such as cargo transport and aircraft refueling missions.

Deptula equated today's level of UAS development with the progress made in manned aircraft in the 1920s.

There's "lots of potential" for expanding UAS technology across the military in the coming years, Deptula said, but he also pointed out that replacing conventional fighter planes and pilots with unmanned aerial vehicles is a long way off.

The flight plan doesn't provide specific solutions, but it does address "concepts and possibilities that will fill in and morph over time," said Col. Eric Mathewson, the director of the Air Force's UAS Task Force.

The plan, Mathewson said, "allows us to reach out and talk to academia and industry, the other services, [Defense Department]-wide, our coalition and allied partners, and work together in a more efficient and synergistic way."

Entrepreneurial Leadership

Editor's Note: The author is a former servicemember:

July 23, 2009 (San Dimas, CA) American Heroes Press announced that the co-author of Leadership: Texas Hold ‘em Style, Lieutenant Raymond E. Foster, LAPD (ret.) will be a guest on the Internet-based radio program Ladee 16 discussing entrepreneurial leadership on September 12, 2009 at 4PM Eastern.

Date: September 12, 2009
Time: 4PM Eastern
Listen Live: http://www.blogtalkradio.com/Ladee16

ABOUT THE PROGRAM
Ladee 16, an internet marketer by profession, hosts a show that showcases entrepreneurs and artists. According to Ladee 16, “It is the goal of this show to promote as many people as possible to help them on their individual paths to their individual goals.”

ABOUT RAYMOND E. FOSTER
Raymond E. Foster was a sworn member of the Los Angeles Police Department for 24 years. He retired in 2003 at the rank of Lieutenant. He holds a bachelor’s from the Union Institute and University in
Criminal Justice Management and a Master’s Degree in Public Financial Management from California State University, Fullerton. He has completed his doctoral studies in business research. Raymond is a graduate of the West Point Leadership program and has attended law enforcement, technology and leadership programs such as the National Institute for Justice, Technology Institute, Washington, DC.

Raymond has been a part-time lecturer at California State University, Fullerton and is currently a faculty advisor and chair of the
Criminal Justice Program at the Union Institute and University. He has experience teaching upper division courses in law enforcement, public policy, technology and leadership. Raymond is an experienced author who has published numerous articles in a wide range of venues including magazines such as Government Technology, Mobile Government, Airborne Law Enforcement Magazine, and Police One. He has appeared on the History Channel and radio programs in the United States and Europe as subject matter expert in technological applications in law enforcement.

His first book, Police Technology is used in over 100 colleges and universities nationwide. He latest book,
Leadership: Texas Hold ‘em Style has been adopted by several universities for course work in leadership; by several civil service organizations and required reading for promotion; and, has been well received in the wider market.

ABOUT THE BOOK
Using poker as analogy for
leadership, Captain Andrew Harvey, CPD (ret.), Ed.D. and Lieutenant Raymond E. Foster, LAPD (ret.), MPA found the right mix of practical experience and academic credentials to write a definitive book for leaders. Working together, Harvey and Foster have written Leadership: Texas Hold em Style. Most often leaders find they are given a set of resources people, equipment, funds, experience and a mission. As Foster noted, "You're dealt a certain hand. How you play that hand as a leader determines your success."

More than a book: A fun and entertaining journey through
leadership that includes an interactive website to supplement knowledge gained from the book.
Proven and Tested: Not an academic approach to
leadership, but rather a road-tested guide that has been developed through 50-years of author experience.
High Impact: Through the use of perspective, reflection, and knowledge, provides information that turns
leadership potential into leadership practice.
Ease of Application: Theory is reinforced with real-life experience, which results in accessible and practical tools leaders can put to use immediately.
High Road Approach: Personal character and ethical beliefs are woven into each leadership approach, so leaders do the right thing for the right reasons.
Uses Game of Poker: Rather than a dry approach that is all fact and no flavor, the game of poker is used as a lens through which to view
leadership concepts.

CONTACT INFORMATION
Lieutenant Raymond E. Foster, LAPD (ret)
909.599.7530
raymond@hitechcj.com
www.police-writers.com

H&R Block Announces Donation to National Military Family Association

H&R Block Inc. (NYSE: HRB) today announced that in keeping with its ongoing support for Service members and their families, it is donating nearly $20,000 on behalf of Eurpac Services, Inc. to the National Military Family Association at its headquarters in Alexandria, Va.

H&R Block has a history of partnering with the U.S. Armed Services to create specialized programs including:

Military OneSource free online tax preparation offers for active military
Military Spouse Scholarship Program offering full scholarships to H&R Block’s Income Tax Course and career opportunities
Kiosks on military bases offering convenient tax preparation and tax expertise on military tax situations

H&R Block, the world’s largest tax services provider, is proud to continue its strong support of our Service members and their families. For more information on how H&R Block supports the U.S. Military, visit www.hrblock.com/military.

Award Recognizes Excellence in Installation Management

By Army Sgt. 1st Class Michael J. Carden
American Forces Press Service

July 23, 2009 - The top installations from each military service and the Defense Logistics Agency received the Commander in Chief's Annual Award for Installation Excellence at a Pentagon ceremony yesterday. The award recognizes the efforts of those who operate and maintain military installations and who have best managed their resources to support the mission, said Dorothy Robyn, deputy undersecretary of defense for installations.

"Those being recognized today represent the finest achievements in installation support by our military -- accomplishing their mission while improving the quality of life for those who serve," Robyn said.

With military combat and humanitarian deployments under way across the globe, she said, "all of our installations are under extraordinary demands, which makes the accomplishments of our awardees all the more remarkable."

This year's awardees are: Fort Stewart and Hunter Army Airfield, Ga.; Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, N.C.; Commander, Fleet Activities Yokosuka, Japan; Hurlburt Field, Fla.; and Defense Distribution Depot San Joaquin, Calif.

Robyn's predecessor, Wayne Arny, was the ceremony's keynote speaker. He added to Robyn's sentiments, citing that those who operate and maintain military installations strive to be the best at what they do, because of how much installations mean to servicemembers' families.

"They ensure the water's clean, the air is fresh, the roads are safe, and that the facilities are maintained to the highest degree possible, all while maintaining military readiness," he said.

Arny lauded the winners for pioneering groundbreaking methods to achieve mission goals, for being leaders in stewardship of natural and cultural resources and for improving cooperation within their local communities.

"You're developing and implementing best practices for improving quality of life for those living and working on or around your installation," Arny said. "Our defense organization is the best in the world, and our installations are the platforms from which America's military capabilities are generated, deployed and sustained."

Army Maj. Gen. Tony Cuculo, commanding general of Fort Stewart and Hunter Army Airfield, accepted the Army's award for his coastal Georgia community. Fort Stewart, he said, is more than just a duty to his soldiers; it's home to their fellow soldiers and their families.

"Home is where the Army sends you, but home is just a word to a soldier and his family unless there's a feeling of warmth, welcome and care behind it," Cuculo said. "It's not just the nice facilities and the manicured lawns, it's an attitude of service [and] a deep understanding of who is served."

President Ronald Reagan created the Commander's in Chief Annual Award for Installation Excellence in 1985. The Defense Logistics Agency was added to the competition in 1988. Award recipients receive a trophy, an "Installation Excellence" flag and a letter signed by President Barack Obama.

MILITARY CONTRACTS July 23, 2009

DEFENSE LOGISTICS AGENCY
Scientific Applications International Corp., San Diego, Calif., is being awarded a maximum $200,000,000 fixed-price with economic price adjustment, prime vendor contract for management of consumable items to be use at repair facilities. Other locations of performance are in North Carolina, Florida and California. Using service is Navy. There were originally twelve proposals solicited with four responses. Contract funds will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This contract modification is for the second two-year option period. The date of performance completion is September 30, 2011. The contracting activity is the Defense Supply Center Philadelphia (DSCP), Philadelphia, Pa., (SPM500-04-D-BP13).

Scott Industrial Systems, Dayton, Ohio* is being awarded a maximum $18,447,000 firm fixed-price, indefinite delivery and indefinite quantity contract for heavy equipment transporter system cylinder assembly. There are no other locations of performance. Using service is Army. There were originally six proposals solicited with two responses. Contract funds will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The date of performance completion is Aug. 2, 2014. The contracting activity is the Defense Logistics Agency, Warren (DSCC-ZG), Warren, Mich., (SPRDL1-09-D-0041).

Navistar Defense, Warrenville, Ill., is being awarded a maximum $15,697,420 firm fixed-price, sole-source contract for diesel engine parts. Other location of performance is in Ohio. Using services are Army, Air Force and Marine Corps. There was originally one proposal solicited with one response. Contract funds will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The date of performance completion is Dec. 22, 2009. The contracting activity is the Defense Logistics Agency, Warren (DSCC-ZG), Warren, Mich., (SPRDL1-09-C-0119).

NAVY
AMEC Earth & Environmental, Inc., Plymouth Meeting, Pa., (N62583-09-D-0128); Innovative Technical Solutions, Inc., Walnut Creek, Calif., (N62583-09-D-0129); Shaw Environmental & Infrastructure, Inc., Irving, Texas (N62583-09-D-0130); Weston Solutions, Inc., West Chester, Pa., (N62583-09-D-0131); and Willbros Government Services (U.S.), LLC, Tulsa, Okla., (N62583-09-D-0132), are each being awarded a firm-fixed price, indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract in support of the assessment, repair, and construction for petroleum, oils and lubricant (POL) fuel systems at various locations worldwide. The work to be performed provides for support of the sustainment, restoration, and modernization requirements managed by the Engineering Service Center, Port Hueneme. The work is to access and repair various POL facilities and systems at various locations, worldwide. Projects may involve designing, building, engineering, inspection, testing and construction of POL fuel systems and its various components. The dollar value for all four contracts combined is $70,000,000. The contract also includes four unexercised options, which if exercised would increase the cumulative contract value to $350,000,000. Work will be performed at various Department of Defense facilities worldwide. The term of the contract is not to exceed 60 months, with an expected completion date of July 2014. Contract funds in the amount of $125,000 will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This contract was competitively procured via the Navy Electronic Commerce Online website, with eight proposals received. The Naval Facilities Engineering Command, Specialty Center Acquisitions, Port Hueneme, Calif., is the contracting activity.

Alion Science and Technology Corp., Chicago, Ill., is being awarded a $7,031,202 cost-plus-fixed-fee contract for the development of a prototype tool to improve live virtual and constructive integration technologies suitable for military education, experimentation, analysis, training, and mission rehearsal. Work will be performed in Norfolk, Va., (70 percent) and Orlando, Fla., (30 percent), and is expected to be completed in July 2012. Contract funds in the amount of $93,500 will expire at the end of the fiscal year. This contract was competitively procured through a Broad Agency Announcement; one offer was received. The Naval Air Warfare Center Training Systems Division, Orlando, Fla., is the contracting activity (N61339-09-C-0033).

Harper Construction Company, Inc.*, San Diego, Calif., is being awarded a $6,832,800 modification under a previously awarded firm-fixed price contract (N62473-08-C-2201) to exercise option items 0001 and 0002, which provides for the furniture, fixtures, and equipment for the newly constructed Multi-Battalion Operations Centers at the Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center Twentynine Palms, Calif. The total contract amount after exercise of the options will be $48,147,265. Work will be performed in Twentynine Palms, Calif., and is expected to be completed by October 2010. Contract funds will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The Naval Facilities Engineering Command, Southwest, San Diego, Calif., is the contracting activity.

General Dynamics Amphibious Systems, Woodbridge, Va., was awarded a $6,366,539 firm-fixed-price contract for two MK 46 Mod 2 gun weapon systems. The MK 46 Mod 2 gun weapon system is an accurate and lethal system available in both land and naval variants. Work will be performed in Woodbridge, Va., (93.9 percent) and Westminster, Md., (6.1 percent), and is expected to be completed by January 2011. Contract funds in the amount of $6,366,539 will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This contract was not competitively procured. The Naval Surface Warfare Center, Dahlgren Division, Dahlgren, Va., is the contracting activity (N00178-09-C-1002).

McDonnell Douglas Corp., a wholly owned subsidiary of The Boeing Co., St. Louis, Mo., is being awarded a $5,929,442 modification to a previously awarded firm-fixed-price contract (N00019-04-C-0014) for the procurement of ancillary mission equipment for the F/A-18 E/F and E/A-18G aircraft. Work will be performed in Mesa, Ariz., and is expected to be completed in March 2012. Contract funds in the amount of $2,916,539 will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The Naval Air Systems Command, Patuxent River, Md., is the contracting activity.

CORRECTION: Contract delivery order #0012 awarded on July 16, 2009, to Force Protection Industries, Inc., Ladson, S.C., under contract M67854-07-D-5031, should now reflect the finalized dollar amount as $56,356,726.

Officials Seek Extended Authority for Quality-of-life Construction

By Samantha L. Quigley
American Forces Press Service

July 23, 2009 - An extension of a law that authorizes minor and quick construction of military facilities would give servicemembers better options in child care and fitness centers, a Pentagon official told a congressional panel yesterday. Arthur Myers, the Defense Department's principal director of military community and family policy, made the request of the House Armed Services Committee's military personnel subcommittee while he and the services' top noncommissioned officers testified before the subcommittee to share information about military family programs.

Myers said the original, though temporary, construction authority allowed for the speedy addition of 15,000 spaces in the military child care system.

"To meet our goals for child care and to keep our members fit to fight and win, we require similar authority for fitness centers and for child care for children through 12 years of age," Myers said. "We need to extend the authority, which ends this fiscal year, though fiscal ... 2012, and also increase the project threshold to $15 million."

Myers went on to tell the subcommittee about his office's Military OneSource program, which provides face-to-face, nonmedical counseling for military members and their families. It also offers financial assistance and health and wellness coaching.

In addition, the Military Community and Family Policy office is helping military spouses develop portable careers by offering career advancement accounts for credentialing and licensure, he said. To date, more than 34,000 spouses have established accounts through the initiative, which began in March. More than half of those who have started training are seeking careers in health professions, he said.

Myers went on to thank the Congress members for legislation to help military children with autism and asked for their support to expand this attention to all military families with special needs – those with a medical or educational need requiring specific and specialized services for an extended time.

"Military families with special needs encounter multiple challenges navigating the maze of health care, education, and community support services ... each time they move," he said.

Chief Master Sgt. of the Air Force James Roy told the subcommittee that officials have identified more than 14,000 Air Force families with special needs, and that SAir Force leaders are aware of the challenges military families with special needs face when moving.

"We have a good process for identifying families and facilitating personnel moves and assignments based on a special needs family's requirement," he said. "However, we have determined the need for a companion program to provide family support as they move from location to location."

Recent Air Force initiatives have concentrated on expanding child care capacity, increasing child care for reserve component members, improving financial readiness and education and development opportunities for spouses and children, Roy added. This includes working to ensure all credits students earn in one school will transfer and count toward graduation at another.

Soldiers and family members routinely list access to quality medical care as their biggest concern, Sgt. Maj. of the Army Kenneth Preston said. One of the major challenges to getting that care is finding sufficient health care providers away from military installations who accept payment from the military's Tricare health plan.

"As one health care provider said, 'I take Tricare cases out of charity to help the services,'" Preston said. A shortage of health care providers in remote locations hurts soldiers and their families, he said.

"While Tricare is meeting their established standards for care available, I recommend a review of those standards to ensure they meet the needs of soldiers and families serving today at a higher operational pace," Preston told the House panel.

In 2007, the Army launched the Army Family Covenant, which Preston called the centerpiece of the service's commitment to soldiers and their families. The Army Community Covenant followed a year later. Both of the initiatives institutionalize and fund the programs supporting soldiers and their families, he explained.

Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy Rick West acknowledged the link between the safety, security and well-being of Navy families and their sailors' ability to execute the mission.

"It's a function of leadership to ensure our families are given the kind of quality service they deserve," West said. "We must inform and educate them as to the resources that are available.

"In doing so," he added, "our sailors have peace of mind and the ability to focus on their job knowing their families are safe and secure."

The Navy has programs in place to assist families in almost any situation, West said, and great strides have been made to improve these family programs and communicate the efforts to the families.

"We must continue to ensure that every family member knows where to find information about emergency preparedness and other programs that encourage family readiness," he said.

Marine Corps families have a reasonable expectation that the Corps and the nation will take care of them, Sgt. Maj. of the Marine Corps Carlton Kent said, quoting the Marine Corps commandant.

"These [family] programs are critical to addressing the quality-of-life needs of our families," Kent said. "I firmly believe that the well-being of the Marines and their families have an impact on the readiness and the retention of our Corps."

National Guard and reserve families face some different issues from their active-duty counterparts, said Air Force Col. Cory Lyman, assistant director of individual and family support policy in the Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Reserve Affairs, Management and Personnel.

"Guard and reserve families are community-based and connected, Lyman said. "They're also dispersed geographically across some 4,000 communities nationwide."

This can cause unique challenges and opportunities, but the Defense Department is committed to supporting these reserve component members and their families through initiatives like the Yellow Ribbon Reintegration Program, Lyman said.

"This program is focused on the reserve-component member, and it works hand in hand with the family program to enhance family readiness and helps to smooth many of the potential challenges of military deployments," he said.

"The department is committed to the success of this Yellow Ribbon Reintegration Program and ... we will continue to collaborate with the many agencies and programs that help deliver critical family program and Yellow Ribbon resources."

Sailors Teach English to Bahraini Students

By Navy Petty Officer 1st Class Joel Miller
Special to American Forces Press Service

July 23, 2009 - Twelve sailors assigned to Commander, Task Force 53, and U.S. Naval Forces Central Command volunteered yesterday to help disabled teenagers and their families here learn English. Every Monday and Wednesday, sailors teach English to Bahraini students to help them prepare for State Department exchange programs in the United States. The lessons are part of a recurring community relations project sponsored by the Bahrain Disabled Sports Federation.

"Sailors come here to teach English and provide an important tool to communicate in the world," said Jassim Mohammed Seyadi, chairman of the Bahrain Association for Parents and Friends of Disableds. "This will certainly help improve the lives of everyone involved."

During the tutoring, sailors spent time working with students on vocabulary, reading and writing with a mix of activities and games.

"It's great to see the kids' interest in the United States and in learning English," said Navy Lt. Ryan Wodele, an officer assigned to Combined Task Force 53 who volunteers with the project. "They seem to enjoy learning new vocabulary and associating words in English with things they have heard about the U.S."

The students are improving their English-speaking skills before participating in a bilateral exchange program scheduled for next year between Bahrain and a school in Eugene, Ore.

"Today, the kids have so much confidence, they will stand up on stage and speak English," said Essam Kamal, the federation's managing director and organizer of the exchange program. "A few months ago, they were too shy and unsure."

The task force's involvement with the federation and the youth exchange participants is one of five community relations projects Naval Forces Central Command sponsors in Bahrain.

"Over the past year, we have increased from five to 13 commands actively participating in [community relations] efforts, with CTF 53 leading the pack," said Navy Lt. Ron Nordan, who manages community relations projects for Naval Forces Central Command. "This gives the U.S. Navy opportunities to significantly contribute to the communities in which we live."

The federation organizes participation in regional and international disabled athletic competitions and offers a variety of sports for the disabled, including athletics, swimming, table tennis, wheelchair basketball, bowling, power lifting and football.

"Seeing these people volunteer their time is a really positive thing for our participants," said Wasnaa Al Aradi, the federation's head of Disability Youth Challengers Youth Committee. "It helps us look forward, even more, to the next exchange in Oregon."

(Navy Petty Officer 1st Class Joel Miller serves with the U.S. Naval Forces Central Command/U.S. 5th Fleet public affairs office.)

Leadership Mojo

Editor's Note: The author is a former servicember.

July 23, 2009 (San Dimas, CA) American Heroes Press announced that the co-author of
Leadership: Texas Hold ‘em Style, Lieutenant Raymond E. Foster, LAPD (ret.) will be a guest on the internet-based radio program Professional Mojo for two episodes: August 11, 2009 at 8AM Pacific and August 20, 2009 at 8AM Pacific.

Dates: August 11, 2009 and August 20, 2009
Time: 8AM Pacific
Listen Live:
http://www.blogtalkradio.com/professionalmojo/2009/08/11/Professional-Mojo-Interviews-Raymond-Foster-about-Leadership

http://www.blogtalkradio.com/professionalmojo/2009/08/20/Professional-Mojo-Continues-the-Discussion-on-Leadership-1

ABOUT THE PROGRAM
Professional Mojo delivers thoughtfully priced webinars, onsite learning, private label teleseminars, and web design services for nonprofits, churches, and organizations. Lee Brogden Culberson, the host of Professional Mojo, said, “Our mission is simple: offer professionally moderated webinars with relevant, timely topics at a reasonable price. Join the Mojo Mavens and get ready!”

ABOUT RAYMOND E. FOSTER
Raymond E. Foster was a sworn member of the Los Angeles Police Department for 24 years. He retired in 2003 at the rank of Lieutenant. He holds a bachelor’s from the Union Institute and University in
Criminal Justice Management and a Master’s Degree in Public Financial Management from California State University, Fullerton. He has completed his doctoral studies in business research. Raymond is a graduate of the West Point Leadership program and has attended law enforcement, technology and leadership programs such as the National Institute for Justice, Technology Institute, Washington, DC.

Raymond has been a part-time lecturer at California State University, Fullerton and is currently a faculty advisor and chair of the
Criminal Justice Program at the Union Institute and University. He has experience teaching upper division courses in law enforcement, public policy, technology and leadership. Raymond is an experienced author who has published numerous articles in a wide range of venues including magazines such as Government Technology, Mobile Government, Airborne Law Enforcement Magazine, and Police One. He has appeared on the History Channel and radio programs in the United States and Europe as subject matter expert in technological applications in law enforcement.

His first book,
Police Technology is used in over 100 colleges and universities nationwide. He latest book, Leadership: Texas Hold ‘em Style has been adopted by several universities for course work in leadership; by several civil service organizations and required reading for promotion; and, has been well received in the wider market.

ABOUT THE BOOK
Using poker as analogy for
leadership, Captain Andrew Harvey, CPD (ret.), Ed.D. and Lieutenant Raymond E. Foster, LAPD (ret.), MPA found the right mix of practical experience and academic credentials to write a definitive book for leaders. Working together, Harvey and Foster have written Leadership: Texas Hold em Style. Most often leaders find they are given a set of resources people, equipment, funds, experience and a mission. As Foster noted, "You're dealt a certain hand. How you play that hand as a leader determines your success."

More than a book: A fun and entertaining journey through
leadership that includes an interactive website to supplement knowledge gained from the book.
Proven and Tested: Not an academic approach to
leadership, but rather a road-tested guide that has been developed through 50-years of author experience.
High Impact: Through the use of perspective, reflection, and knowledge, provides information that turns
leadership potential into leadership practice.
Ease of Application: Theory is reinforced with real-life experience, which results in accessible and practical tools leaders can put to use immediately.
High Road Approach: Personal character and ethical beliefs are woven into each leadership approach, so leaders do the right thing for the right reasons.
Uses Game of Poker: Rather than a dry approach that is all fact and no flavor, the game of poker is used as a lens through which to view
leadership concepts.

CONTACT INFORMATION
Lieutenant Raymond E. Foster, LAPD (ret)
909.599.7530
raymond@hitechcj.com
www.police-writers.com

New GI Bill Transfer Options Take Effect Aug. 1

By Rob McIlvaine
Special to American Forces Press Service

July 23, 2009 - The Post-9/11 GI Bill takes effect Aug. 1, but in the meantime, servicemembers may submit a request to transfer benefits to their spouses and children now. "Transferability of Post 9/11 GI Bill benefits has been the most requested initiative we receive from our servicemembers," said Bill Carr, deputy undersecretary of defense for personnel policy, "and we believe it will assist us in retaining highly qualified military personnel."

Career servicemembers on active duty or in the selected reserve on Aug. 1 may be entitled to transfer all or a portion of their unused entitlement to one or more family members.

Army 1st Sgt. Steven Colbert, who serves with Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 3rd U.S. Infantry, at Fort Myer, Va., is among the first soldiers to take advantage of the new entitlement.

"I will be the first to say that the Army is probably the best thing that has ever happened to me," Colbert said. "It has given me some of the advantages that I didn't have as a child growing up. One of the reasons why I stayed in so long is because of Jordan, my son. Now I have the opportunity to give him something I never had."

Colbert has spent 23 years in the Army with tours throughout Europe and across the United States. During that time, he took advantage of tuition assistance and graduated with a bachelor's degree in management. His wife, Danielle, is working on a bachelor's degree in business administration at Prince George's Community College in Maryland. Jordan Colbert already has similar plans.

"I want to go in the Army and play football," he said with a big smile. "But I want to attend Virginia Tech first."

"I didn't put that in his head," his father said. "He already has picked that out, and with us being here in the D.C. area, the Post 9/11 GI Bill is perfect. [Virginia Tech] is a pricey school, but these benefits are going to help me be able to take care of that.

"It's just wonderful," he continued. "I'm just overwhelmed about the opportunity to really be able to take care of him."

For servicemembers and spouses who might want to continue with their studies, the Post 9/11 GI Bill can be used for all levels of degree programs, including a second degree, a master's degree or even a doctorate.

Defense officials advise servicemembers to transfer at least a month's worth of GI Bill benefits to every dependent before they leave service to lock in an opportunity to change the number of months transferred at a later time.

Any family member not approved for transferability before a member retires or separates will be denied the opportunity forever, unless the member re-enters service. Likewise, veterans who remarry or have more children after leaving service will not be able to transfer GI Bill benefits to these new family members.

"It's recommended that soldiers add all family members as potential beneficiaries of their Post 9/11 GI Bill benefits, said Bob Clark, the Defense Department's assistant director for accession policy and military personnel policy. Once servicemembers retire or separate, he explained, they can no longer add new family members as potential beneficiaries.

As a first sergeant, Colbert said, he wants to make sure his soldiers know about this benefit.

"Because I'm the first sergeant here at Headquarters Company, with all these assets like the regimental career counselors, I'm in a unique position to pass this knowledge on to my soldiers," he said.

A program Colbert is particularly proud of is "College 101." which the Fort Myer military community developed with the Army Education Center. It works to improve soldiers' transition to college.

"We will have people come in from the education center who will advise soldiers to take advantage of these benefits, because they have to have some type of educational background to be successful," he said. "A lot of us in the Army don't realize it but, hey, it's tough outside that gate -- real tough. You've got to have a balance. You've got to be more competitive than the next person."

Tuition is not the only benefit extended to potential college-goers. For students attending school more than half the time, the Post 9/11 GI Bill also pays housing costs, up to a rate equivalent to the basic allowance for housing rate for an E-5 with dependents in the ZIP code where the school is located.

Students also are entitled to a yearly stipend of up to $1,000 to cover the cost of books and supplies, and students from rural areas who are transferring to a school also may be entitled to a one-time payment of $500.

Military Monitors Potential North Korean Weapons Proliferation

By Gerry J. Gilmore
American Forces Press Service

July 23, 2009 - The U.S. military plays a role in the monitoring of North Korean actions that may violate a U.N. Security Council resolution that prohibits North Korea from weapons proliferation, a senior Pentagon official said here today. The United Nations has banned North Korea from exporting its weapons technology -- such as its missile expertise – to other countries. The North Korean government, which also is suspected of developing nuclear weapons, has conducted several ballistic-missile tests in recent weeks.

"The United States is fulfilling its obligations," spokesman Bryan Whitman told Pentagon reporters, as part of U.N. efforts designed to prevent North Korea from providing its military expertise to other nations.

"We have a role in that [effort]," Whitman continued. "We have certain capabilities and resources."

Whitman noted that at a Pentagon news conference yesterday, Navy Adm. Timothy J. Keating, commander of U.S. Pacific Command, voiced concerns about alleged military ties between North Korea and Burma, especially potential arms shipments that would violate U.N. Security Council Resolution 1718. Keating told reporters his command is capable of closely tracking potential shipments of North Korean-supplied weapons to Burma, which is governed by a military junta.

"We are, obviously, watching North Korea closely from many different aspects: the proliferation aspect, shipping, as well as monitoring missile activities," Whitman said.

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton is traveling in the Pacific region, he pointed out. "She is carrying very strong messages this government and many countries around the world have [expressed] for some time about North Korean behavior," Whitman said.

North Korea had removed itself from multi-party talks that sought to establish a nuclear-free Korean peninsula. Meanwhile, Whitman said, U.S. military assets "continue to watch" and monitor North Korean activities that may violate the U.N. resolution.

Preventive Medicine Soldiers Keep Troops Safe

By Army Pfc. Bethany L. Little
Special to American Forces Press Service

July 23, 2009 - A small preventive medicine team here does big things to protect servicemembers from disease-borne foods, water, bugs and animals. "We do a lot of different things here and other locations," said Army Spc. Matthew B. Hintermaier, a preventive medicine technician with Company C, 172nd Support Battalion. The team conducts a variety of tests and studies, including monitoring insect populations and water sampling, to detect pathogens.

The team maintains a log as it checks water for E. coli and other bacteria and mineral levels, Hintermaier said. "To determine if the water is usable for humans," the Ann Arbor, Mich., native explained, "we look at the military exposure guidelines for acceptable contamination levels."

The military exposure guidelines allow commanders assess risk and determine acceptable levels of chemical exposure in a deployed environment.

A bigger part of a preventive medicine team's job is to protect residents from insects and the diseases they can carry.

"Here on [Forward Operating Base Kalsu], there are three different types of mosquitoes and one type of sand flea or sand fly," Hintermaier said. "Both can be dangerous to humans."

To protect servicemembers, the preventive medicine team sets up light traps three times a week to attract mosquitoes and sand flies at 12 sites with a high concentration of people. Set up at night and retrieved in the morning, the traps are then placed in a freezer to be sorted later and sent to Baghdad to be tested.

If any threat is found from the sampling, preventive medicine notifies vector control where the threat is located. Chemical pesticide is then used at night to fog the area. A vector is a carrier of pathogens such as bacteria that can cause diseases.

Residents can protect themselves from mosquitoes and sand flies by wearing the proper clothing and using insect repellent on exposed skin.

Insects are not preventive medicine's only concern here. The team also works with vector control to manage the animal and vermin population. Animals found on the base include cats, dogs, porcupines, hedgehogs, snakes, jungle cats, foxes and rabbits.

"We go to several different [bases] and work all over the Blackhawk area of operation," Hintermaier said.

The team inspects areas such as dining facilities, eateries, barbershops and gyms on the bases, watching for food contamination, safety hazards and cleanliness.

By educating the command and showcasing their expertise, the preventive medicine team members said, they hope to make an impact on servicemembers' safety.

(Army Pfc. Bethany L. Little serves with the 172nd Infantry Brigade public affairs office.)

Force Structure Actions at Fort Carson Announced

The Department of the Army announced today the planned activations of the 46th Engineer Detachment, 615th Engineer Company, and the 52nd Engineer Battalion Headquarters at Fort Carson, Colo. These force structure actions support the 2007 "Grow the Army" initiative. The Army will also activate the 80th Engineer Team, 40th Quartermaster Team, and realign the 230th Finance Company, 576th Engineer Company, and the 59th Quartermaster Company at Fort Carson as part of integrated force structure changes that support the Army's transformation and modularity plan.

These combined actions represent an increase of 431 military authorizations and no change in Army civilian authorizations at Fort Carson. These force structure actions will be completed by April 16, 2010. Point of contact for this notification is Lt. Col. Lee M. Packnett, (703) 614-2487, Office of the Chief of Public Affairs, Office of the Secretary of the Army.

Force Structure Actions at Fort Bliss Announced

The Department of the Army announced today the planned activation of the 3rd Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 1st Armored Division, at Fort Bliss, Texas. The 3rd IBCT is brigade combat team number 44 of the "Grow the Army" initiative. This decision is not related to or impacted by the April 6, 2009, Department of Defense announcement stopping the growth at 45 brigade combat teams for the Army.

This stationing action represents an increase of 3,444 military authorizations at Fort Bliss and no change in civilian authorizations. This stationing action will be completed by Aug. 16, 2009. Point of contact for this notification is Lt. Col. Lee Packnett, (703) 697-2487, Office of the Chief of Public Affairs.