Military News

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

National Guard (in Federal Status) and Reserve Activated as of March 30, 2010

March 31, 2010 - This week the Army and Marine Corps announced a decrease in activated reservists, while the Navy, Air Force and Coast Guard announced an increase. The net collective result is 1,877 fewer reservists activated than last week.

At any given time, services may activate some units and individuals while deactivating others, making it possible for these figures to either increase or decrease. The total number currently on active duty from the Army National Guard and Army Reserve is 106,334; Navy Reserve, 6,252; Air National Guard and Air Force Reserve, 16,059; Marine Corps Reserve, 6,432; and the Coast Guard Reserve, 755. This brings the total National Guard and Reserve personnel who have been activated to 135,832, including both units and individual augmentees.

A cumulative roster of all National Guard and Reserve personnel who are currently activated may be found at http://www.defense.gov/news/d20100330ngr.pdf.

Guardsmen in Three States Battle Floods


By Air Force Lt. Col. Ellen Krenke
National Guard Bureau

March 31, 2010 - More than 1,500 National Guard members in three Northeast states are waging a war against rising flood waters after several days of rain combined with melting snow. Massachusetts has called up more than 900 soldiers, while Rhode Island and Connecticut have more than 500 and 150 on duty, respectively.

U.S. Northern Command also activated two coordinating units today in support of the Federal Emergency Management Agency's northeast regional office to assist in the flood response, officials there said.

Massachusetts Gov. Deval L. Patrick has authorized the mobilization of 1,000 soldiers and airman to support the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency.

Soldiers have filled and transported about 9,000 sandbags from the state highway department in Lexington, Mass., to points of distribution in Lexington, Tewksbury, Bridgewater and Millbury.

Additional soldiers and airmen called for state active duty not only will continue to fill and transport sandbags to affected areas, but also will conduct emergency evacuation operations and presence patrols and provide security to isolated areas, according to a news release from the state.

Twenty-one National Guard trucks are headed to Fall River, Mass., to assist with evacuations in the Watuppa Pond area, and 6,000 sandbags are being delivered and emplaced in Middleboro, Blackstone and Concord.

Guard officials said the Massachusetts Guard is pre-positioned at strategic locations throughout the state, capable of providing communication support, transportation support, medical support, predictive flood modeling and maintenance sustainment support.

"The men and women of the Massachusetts National Guard are eager to assist the citizens of the commonwealth," said Army Maj. Gen. Joseph C. Carter, Massachusetts adjutant general. The commonwealth can rely on our diverse capabilities, our strategically located units, and our quick response during times of need."

Army 2nd Lt. Danielle Golden, a platoon leader with the 125th Quartermaster Company, supervised soldiers who were filling sandbags in Lexington. Golden, who normally works as a state corrections officer, said this is the first state mission in which she has participated since joining the Guard.

"Any soldier that gets to be a part of a mission like this at least once is lucky," she said.

Army Staff Sgt. Ross E. Bandy of the 272nd Chemical Company said he's glad to help, crediting a friend's service with inspiring him to join the Guard. "I am a Navy veteran, and I have a friend in the Guard who helped out during the 2008 ice storm," he said. "After seeing him, I thought I'd join and help some people out."

The 79th Troop Command in Rehoboth, Mass., coordinated the movement of filled sandbags from Lexington to areas designated by MEMA. The initial tasks MEMA assigned to the National Guard have been completed, Guard officials said.

Just to the south, Rhode Island soldiers have been tasked with assisting various state and local authorities with traffic control, evacuations and transportation. The Rhode Island Guard continues to work in close coordination with the Rhode Island EMA on where and when to position Guard personnel and equipment.

All guard missions will be based on input from RIEMA, which is closely monitoring the situation with all state and local agencies, according to a news release from the state.

"We are an integrated emergency management agency; we're maintaining situational awareness. We are well linked with FEMA and [the Department of Homeland Security]," said Rhode Island's adjutant general, Army Maj. Gen. Robert T. Bray, at a news conference yesterday. "Our main focus is safety and infrastructure, specifically to keep the main thoroughfares open."

He added that the Guard activation would last for as long as necessary. "We are prepared to put personnel and equipment where they will be best utilized," he said.

In Connecticut, soldiers are conducting high-water rescues and sandbagging operations, Guard officials said.

(Army Staff Sgt. James C. Lally of the Massachusetts National Guard contributed to this report.)

General Officer Announcements

March 31, 2010 - Secretary of Defense Robert M. Gates announced today that the President made the following nominations:

Marine Corps Brig. Gen. Richard M. Lake for appointment to the rank of major general. Lake is currently serving as the deputy director of the National Clandestine Service for Community Human Intelligence, Central Intelligence Agency in Washington, D.C.

Marine Corps Brig. Gen. Angela Salinas has been nominated for appointment to the rank of major general. Salinas is currently serving as the director, manpower management, Manpower and Reserve Affairs in Quantico, Va.

Marine Corps Brig. Gen. Ronald L. Bailey has been nominated for appointment to the rank of major general. Bailey is currently serving as the commanding general, Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego; and commanding general, Western Recruiting Region in San Diego, Calif.

Marine Corps Brig. Gen. Timothy C. Hanifen has been nominated for appointment to the rank of major general. Hanifen is currently serving as the deputy commanding general, Marine Corps Combat Development Command in Quantico, Va.

Marine Corps Brig. Gen. James B. Laster has been nominated for appointment to the rank of major general. Laster is currently serving as the commanding general, 3d Marine Division in Okinawa, Japan.

Marine Corps Brig. Gen. Kenneth F. McKenzie Jr. has been nominated for appointment to the rank of major general. McKenzie is currently serving as the deputy chief of staff for stability, International Security Assistance Force, Afghanistan.

Marine Corps Brig. Gen. Robert S. Walsh has been nominated for appointment to the rank of major general. Walsh is currently serving as the assistant wing commander, 2d Marine Aircraft Wing in Cherry Point, N.C.

Marine Corps Brig. Gen. Peter J. Talleri has been nominated for appointment to the rank of major general. Talleri is currently serving as the commander, Defense Distribution Center in New Cumberland, Pa.

Marine Corps Brig. Gen. Jon M. Davis has been nominated for appointment to the rank of major general. Davis is currently serving as the assistant deputy commandant for aviation in Washington, D.C.

Marine Corps Brig. Gen. James A. Kessler has been nominated for appointment to the rank of major general. Kessler is currently serving as the commander, Marine Corps Logistics Command in Albany, Ga.

Marine Corps Brig. Gen. David C. Garza has been nominated for appointment to the rank of major general. Garza is currently serving as the chief of staff, U.S. Southern Command in Miami, Fla.

MILITARY CONTRACTS March 31, 2010

DEFENSE LOGISTICS AGENCY

Cardinal Health, Inc., Dublin, Ohio, is being awarded a maximum $315,552,575 firm-fixed-price, prime vendor contract for pharmaceuticals. Other locations of performance are Missouri, California, Utah, Arizona, Colorado and Washington. Using services are Army, Navy and Air Force. The original proposal was Web solicited with four responses. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This contract is exercising the second option year. The date of performance completion is Sept. 30, 2012. The Defense Supply Center Philadelphia, Philadelphia, Pa., is the contracting activity (SPM200-05-D-3000).

Siemens Medical Solutions USA, Inc., Malvern, Pa., is being awarded a maximum $267,000,000 fixed-price with economic price adjustment contract for radiology systems, components, upgrades, accessories, and installation. There are no other locations of performance. Using services are Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps and federal civilian agencies. The original proposal was Web solicited with 48 responses. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This contract is exercising the forth option year. The date of performance completion is March 30, 2011. The Defense Supply Center Philadelphia, Philadelphia, Pa., is the contracting activity (SPM2D1-09-D-8314).

DMS Pharmaceutical Group, Inc.*, Park Ridge, Ill., is being awarded a maximum $35,137,641 firm-fixed-price, total set-aside, prime vendor secondary contract for pharmaceuticals. There are no other locations of performance. Using services are Army, Navy and Air Force. The original proposal was Web solicited with four responses. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This contract is exercising the second option year. The date of performance completion is Sept. 30, 2012. The Defense Supply Center Philadelphia, Philadelphia, Pa., is the contracting activity (SPM200-05-D-0901).

DMS Pharmaceutical Group, Inc.*, Park Ridge, Ill., is being awarded a maximum $34,101,402 firm-fixed-price, total set-aside, prime vendor secondary contract for pharmaceuticals. There are no other locations of performance. Using services are Army, Navy and Air Force. The original proposal was Web solicited with four responses. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This contract is exercising the second option year. The date of performance completion is Sept. 30, 2012. The Defense Supply Center Philadelphia, Philadelphia, Pa., is the contracting activity (SPM200-05-D-0900).

Cardinal Health, Inc., Dublin, Ohio, is being awarded a maximum $20,056,210 firm-fixed-price, prime vendor contract for pharmaceutical items. Other location of performance is North Carolina. Using service is the Department of Defense. The original proposal was Web solicited with three responses. Contract funds will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The date of performance completion is May 31, 2010. The Defense Supply Center Philadelphia, Philadelphia, Pa., is the contracting activity (SPM200-01-D-1606).

AmerisourceBergen Drug Co., Wayne, Pa., is being awarded a maximum $20,049,630 firm-fixed-price, prime vendor contract for pharmaceuticals. Other location of performance is Hawaii. Using services are Army, Navy and Air Force. The original proposal was Web solicited with four responses. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This contract is exercising the second option year. The date of performance completion is Sept. 30, 2012. The Defense Supply Center Philadelphia, Philadelphia, Pa., is the contracting activity (SPM200-05-D-3500).

Meggitt Aircraft Braking Systems, Akron, Ohio, is being awarded a maximum $19,179,356 firm-fixed, sole-source, requirements-type contract modification. There are no other locations of performance. Using services are Army, Navy and Air Force. There was originally one proposal solicited with one response. The date of performance completion is Aug. 31, 2010. The Defense Supply Center Richmond, Richmond, Va., is the contracting activity (SPM4AX-07-D-9006).

Dakota Drug, Inc.*, Minot, N.D., is being awarded a maximum $17,892,000 firm-fixed-price, prime vendor contract for pharmaceuticals. There are no other locations of performance. Using service is Air Force. The original proposal was Web solicited with four responses. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This contract is exercising the second option year. The date of performance completion is Sept. 30, 2012. The Defense Supply Center Philadelphia, Philadelphia, Pa., is the contracting activity (SPM200-05-D-0976).

General Electric, Cincinnati, Ohio, is being awarded a maximum $8,830,188 fixed-price with economic price adjustment, sole-source contract for aircraft turbine frame and tracking. There are no other locations of performance. Using service is Air Force. 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 Jan. 31, 2013. The Defense Logistics Agency (DSCR-ZBAB), Tinker Air Force Base, Okla., is the contracting activity (FA8122-09-G-0001-UN44).

The Coca-Cola Co., Atlanta, Ga., is being awarded a maximum $8,216,225 firm-fixed-price, sole-source contract for beverages. There are no other locations of performance. Using services are Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps and federal civilian agencies. There was originally one proposal solicited with one response. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The date of performance completion is March 26, 2011. The Defense Supply Center Philadelphia, Philadelphia, Pa., is the contracting activity (SPM300-10-D-9100).

PepsiCo, Purchase, N.Y., is being awarded a maximum $7,349,463 firm-fixed-price, sole-source contract for beverages. There are no other locations of performance. Using services are Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps and federal civilian agencies. There was originally one proposal solicited with one response. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The date of performance completion is March 26, 2011. The Defense Supply Center Philadelphia, Philadelphia, Pa., is the contracting activity (SPM300-10-D-9200).

American Fuel Cells & Coated, Magnolia, Ark., is being awarded a maximum $6,722,740 firm-fixed-price, indefinite-quantity contract for aircraft fuel tanks. There are no other locations of performance. Using service is Air Force. The original proposal was solicited via the Defense Logistics Agency Internet Bid Board System with two responses. Contract funds will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The date of performance completion is March 29, 2011. The Defense Supply Center Richmond, Richmond, Va., is the contracting activity (SPM4A7-10-D-0144).

AmerisourceBergen Drug Co., Wayne, Pa., is being awarded a maximum $4,431,229 firm-fixed-price, prime vendor contract for pharmaceutical items. Other location of performance is Hawaii. Using service is the Department of Defense. The original proposal was Web solicited with three responses. Contract funds will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The date of performance completion is May 31, 2010. The Defense Supply Center Philadelphia, Philadelphia, Pa., is the contracting activity (SPM200-01-D-1604).

NAVY

RQ/FILANC I, JV, Carlsbad, Calif. (N62473-10-D-5414); EPC Corp.*, Glendale, Ariz. (N62473-10-D-5415); Hal Hays Construction, Inc.*, Riverside, Calif. (N62473-10-D-5416); Reyes Construction, Inc.*, Pomona, Calif. (N62473-10-D-5417); Watts Constructors, LLC, Honolulu, Hawaii (N62473-10-D-5418); Orion Construction Corp.*, Vista, Calif. (N62473-10-D-5419); and Tetra Tech/Pascal & Ludwig, JV, Irvine, Calif. (N62473-10-D-5425), are each being awarded a firm-fixed-price, indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity multiple award construction contract for wet utilities construction at various locations predominantly within the Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC) Southwest area of responsibility (AOR) including, but not limited to, Arizona, California, Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico, and Utah. The maximum dollar value, including the base period and four option years, for all seven contracts combined is $300,000,000. Work provides for wet utilities construction including new work, additions, alteration, and repair. Projects may include water, steam, sewer, and storm sewer lines; wells, mains, pumping stations, treatment plants, storage tanks and facilities; and related work. All structures that are integral parts of the water, steam, and sewer networks are included. This contract will not include waterfront related construction, or oil and gas pipeline construction. Work will be performed at various federal sites within the NAVFAC Southwest AOR including, but not limited to, California (83 percent), Arizona (12 percent), Nevada (2 percent), Utah (1 percent), Colorado (1 percent), and New Mexico (1 percent). The term of the contracts are not to exceed 60 months, with an expected completion date of March 2015. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This contract was competitively procured via the Navy Electronic Commerce Online Web site, with 30 proposals received. These seven contractors may compete for task orders under the terms and conditions of the awarded contracts. The Naval Facilities Engineering Command, Southwest, San Diego, is the contracting activity.

Raytheon Co., Tucson, Ariz., is being awarded a $204,000,000 not-to-exceed contract for MK15 Phalanx Close-in Weapon System (CIWS) upgrades and conversions, system overhauls, and associated hardware. Phalanx CIWS is a fast-reaction terminal defense against low- and high-flying, high-speed maneuvering anti-ship missile threats that have penetrated all other defenses. Work will be performed in Louisville, Ky. (30 percent); Andover, Mass. (19 percent); Tucson, Ariz. (16 percent); Syracuse, N.Y. (7 percent); Long Beach, Calif. (6 percent); Radford, Va. (6 percent); Burlington, Vt. (6 percent); Palm Bay, Fla. (2 percent); Pittsburgh, Pa. (2 percent); Bloomington, Minn. (2 percent); Salt Lake City, Utah (2 percent); Norcross, Ga. (1 percent ); and New Albany, Ind. (1 percent). Work is expected to be completed by September 2014. Contract funds in the amount of $51,274,626 will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This contract was not competitively procured. The Naval Sea Systems Command, Washington Navy Yard, D.C., is the contracting activity (N00024-10-C-5427).

Accenture National Security Services, Reston, Va. (N00189-10-D-Z026); Booz Allen Hamilton, McLean, Va. (N00189-10-D-Z027); and KPMG, Washington, D.C. (N00189-10-D-Z028), are each being awarded cost-plus-fixed-fee, indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity multiple-award contract to provide accounting and financial management service to support the Navy Office of Financial Operations for the implementation of the Department of the Navy's financial improvement program. This contract includes a base ordering period with four one-year option periods. For Accenture national security services, the base amount is $40,675,073 and the contract's estimated value, if all options are exercised, is $181,867,958. For Booz Allen Hamilton, the base amount is $41,201,274 and the contract's estimated value, if all options are exercised, is $187,298,288. For KPMG, the base amount is $43,975,895 and the contracts estimated value, if all options are exercised, is $199,926,881. Work is to be performed in Washington, D.C., and is expected to be complete March 2011. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the fiscal year. This requirement was awarded through full and open competition, with 11 offers received. The Fleet and Industrial Supply Center Norfolk, Philadelphia Office, Philadelphia, Pa., is the contracting activity.

Bell-Boeing Joint Project Office, Amarillo, Texas, is being awarded a $55,151,902 modification to a previously awarded cost-plus-fixed-fee contract (N00019-08-C-0025) for non-recurring efforts associated with Increment III of the CV-22 aircraft Block 20 upgrade program. Efforts to be provided include concept definition, non-recurring engineering, drawings, and installation/integration of brake performance enhancements and the helmet mounted display upgrade. Work will be performed in Philadelphia, Pa. (91 percent); Fort Worth, Texas (5 percent); and Fort Walton Beach, Fla. (4 percent), and is expected to be completed in December 2015. Contract funds in the amount of $6,495,000 will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The Naval Air Systems Command, Patuxent River, Md., is the contracting activity.

Northrop Grumman Systems, Inc., Garden City, N.Y., is being awarded a $41,454,003 modification to previously awarded contract (N00024-10-C-5343) for the delivery of AN/SPQ-9B radar sets and combat interface kits for use on U. S. Navy ships. The AN/SPQ-9B radar system provides the capability to detect and track low-flying, high-speed, small radar cross section anti-ship missile targets in heavy clutter environments. Work will be performed in Melville, N.Y. (91.2 percent); Norwalk, Conn. (5.5 percent); and Baltimore, Md. (3.3 percent), and is expected to be completed by April 2011. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The Naval Sea Systems Command, Washington, D.C., is the contracting activity.

Computer Sciences Corp., Falls Church, Va., is being awarded a $31,547,535 cost-plus-fixed-fee, indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract for information technology support services to sustain the Naval Education Technology and Professional Development Training Command, Pensacola, Fla.; Naval Education and Training Command; and Manpower, Personnel, Training and Education Command. This contract includes four option terms which, if exercised, bring the total estimated value of the contract to $220,842,902. Work will be performed in Pensacola, Fla. (57 percent); Great Lakes, Ill. (10 percent); Norfolk, Va. (8 percent); and various locations inside and outside the continental United States (25 percent). Work is expected to be completed by March 2011. Contract funds will not expire before the end of the fiscal year. This contract was competitively awarded through the Electronic Commerce Online Web site, with eight offers received. The Fleet and Industrial Supply Center Norfolk, Philadelphia Division, Philadelphia, Pa., is the contracting activity (N00189-10-R-Z014).

BAE Systems Land & Armaments, LP, Ground Systems Division, York, Pa., is being awarded a $20,654,852 firm-fixed-priced modification to previously awarded delivery order #0011 under previously awarded contract (M67854-07-D-5025) for integrated logistics support (ILS) and sustainment. The ILS sustainment will consist of spare parts for U.S. Special Operations Command variant vehicles. Work will be performed in York, Pa., and is expected to be completed by January 2011. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The Marine Corps Systems Command, Quantico, Va., is the contracting activity.

Hourigan Construction Corp., Virginia Beach, Va., is being awarded $15,218,200 for firm-fixed price task order #0003 under a previously awarded multiple award construction contract (N40085-07-D-7022) for the design and construction of a C-40 aircraft maintenance hangar at Naval Air Station Oceana. The work to be performed provides for the design and construction of a new aircraft hangar and associated support infrastructure, and will also include the demolition of two existing buildings. The task order also contains two unexercised options which, if exercised, would increase the cumulative task order value to $15,418,400. Work will be performed in Virginia Beach, Va., and is expected to be completed by March 2012. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. Three proposals were received for this task order. The Naval Facilities Engineering Command, Mid-Atlantic, Norfolk, Va., is the contracting activity.

Stanford University, Palo Alto, Calif., is being awarded a $14,893,509 cost-type contract under a Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency Broad Agency Announcement No. BAA-09-27 to provide research and development for "Brain Reorganization and Plasticity to Accelerate Injury: Multi-scale and Multi-modal Models Enabled by Next Generation Neurotechnolgoy." This two-year contract includes a two-year option period which, if exercised, would bring the potential value of this contract to $28,806,629. Work will be performed at Stanford University (34 percent) with subcontractor support at Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island (44 percent), the University of California, San Francisco, Calif. (15 percent), and the University College of London in the United Kingdom (7 percent). Work is expected to be completed March 30, 2012. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This contract was competitively procured via publication on the Federal Business Opportunities and SPAWAR e-Commerce Central Web sites. One offer was received. The Space and Naval Warfare Systems Center Pacific, San Diego, is the contracting activity (N66001-10-C-2010).

Sikorsky Aircraft Corp., Stratford, Conn., is being awarded a $12,600,563 firm-fixed-price delivery order against a previously issued basic ordering agreement (N00019-08-G-0010) to complete active vibration control and downed aviator locator system retrofit upgrades to the MH-60S helicopter. Work will be performed in Stratford, Conn. (60 percent); Norfolk, Va. (30 percent); and San Diego (10 percent), and is expected to be completed in February 2014. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The Naval Air Systems Command, Patuxent River, Md., is the contracting activity.

Wyle Laboratories, Inc., Huntsville, Ala., is being awarded an $11,380,330 modification to a previously awarded cost-plus-fixed-fee contract (N00421-08-C-0025) to exercise an option for aircrew, engineering, operations, and scheduling services in support of the Naval Test Wing Atlantic and Naval Test Wing Pacific. The estimated level of effort for this option is 18,757 man-hours. Work will be performed in Patuxent River, Md., and is expected to be completed in March 2011. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The Naval Air Warfare Center Aircraft Division, Patuxent River, Md., is the contracting activity.

LCC/MZT Team II, JV*, Homedale, Wash., is being awarded an $11,109,000 firm-fixed price contract for design and construction of two new stand-alone training buildings and an addition to an existing building at the Joint Personnel Recovery Agency, Survival Evasion Resistance and Escape Training Facility. Work will be performed in Spokane, Wash., and is expected to be completed by Aug. 2012. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This contract was competitively procured via the Navy Electronic Commerce Online Web site, with nine proposals received. The Naval Facilities Engineering Command, Northwest, Silverdale, Wash., is the contracting activity (N44255-10-C-8000).

Branscome, Inc., Williamsburg, Va., is being awarded a $10,797,396 firm-fixed-price contract for repairs to the existing landing plane area taxiways at Chambers Field. The work to be performed provides for the repairs to the existing taxiways consisting of bituminous pavement; overlay and patches; crack repairs; concrete pavement; storm drainage system; pavement markings; taxiway lighting; and incidental related work. Work will be performed in Norfolk, Va., and is expected to be completed by Aug. 2011. Contract funds will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This contract was competitively procured via the Navy Electronic Commerce Online Web site, with five bids received. The Naval Facilities Engineering Command, Mid-Atlantic, Norfolk, Va., is the contracting activity (N40085-10-C-3004).

Nammo Talley, Inc., Mesa, Ariz., is being awarded a $10,222,340 modification to previously awarded contract (M67854-08-C-1123) under contracting line item number 0001 for system development and demonstration of the next generation Shoulder-Launched Multipurpose Assault Weapon (SMAW II) program. The SMAW II system is the predecessor to the SMAW system and is intended to consist of an encased fire-from-enclosure assault round and the next generation SMAW launcher. This modification is for the contractor to implement additional efforts required to design, develop, integrate, test, produce and prepare associated documentation; provide logistical support; provide technical support; and deliver the SMAW II system. Work will be performed in Mesa, Ariz., and is expected to be completed by Sept. 5, 2011. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The Marine Corps Systems Command, Quantico, Va., is the contracting activity.

Raytheon Co., Integrated Defense Systems, Tewksbury, Mass., is being awarded a $9,828,388 modification to previously awarded contract (N00024-05-C-5346) for CVN 78 dual-band radar common array power system and common array cooling system long-lead time materials and associated efforts. These materials, and associated engineering and management efforts, are required to be procured now in order to meet the CVN 78 ship construction in-yard-need-dates at the receiving shipyard to ensure that critical production schedules are maintained for the CVN 78 program. Work will be performed in Andover, Mass. (87.8 percent); Sudbury, Mass. (10.4 percent); Tewksbury, Mass. (0.9 percent); and Portsmouth, R.I. (0.9 percent), and is expected to be completed by September 2010. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The Naval Sea Systems Command, Washington, D.C., is the contracting activity.

Stauder Technologies, St. Peters, Mo., is being awarded $9,041,508 for modification P00041 to a previously awarded contract (M67854-07-C-2062) for additional StrikeLink Systems software development, mobilized rugged tablets with accessories, tripod encoders, and associated travel costs for the tactical location designation hand-off system program. Work will be performed in St. Peters, Mo., and is expected to be completed by April 30, 2011. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The Marine Corps Systems Command, Quantico, Va., is the contracting activity.

Raytheon Technical Services Co., LLC, Indianapolis, Ind., is being awarded a $7,273,925 modification to a previously issued basic order agreement (N00019-05-G-0008) to exercise an option for the depot level rework of 142 LAU-115 guided missile launchers for the F/A-18 aircraft. Work will be performed in Indianapolis, Ind., and is expected to be completed in March 2012. Contract funds in the amount of $2,285,230 will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The Naval Air Systems Command, Patuxent River, Md., is the contracting activity.

The Research Foundation of the State University of New York (SUNY), Albany, N.Y., is being awarded a $6,814,557 cost-no-fee-contract under a Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency Broad Agency Announcement No. BAA 09-27 "Reorganization and Plasticity to Accelerate Injury Recovery." This work is expected to result in new methods for analysis and decoding of neural signals in order to understand how neural-based sensory stimulation could be applied to accelerate recovery from brain injury. This work will develop models of neural codes and temporal patterns that can provide an ability to interpret and predict changes in neural organization through plasticity at multiple scales of measurement. This two-year contract includes a two-year option period which, if exercised, would bring the potential value of this contract to $12,877,705. Work will be performed at SUNY in Brooklyn, New York; the University of Florida, Gainesville, Fla.; the University of California, Berkeley, Calif.; Johns Hopkins Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland; and NIRX Medical Technologies, Glen Head, N.Y., and work is expected to be completed March 30, 2012. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This contract was competitively procured via publication on the Federal Business Opportunities Web site, with five offers received. The Space and Naval Warfare Systems Center Pacific, San Diego, is the contracting activity (N66001-10-C-2008).

BAE Systems Information and Electronic Systems Integration, Inc., Austin, Texas, is being awarded a $6,669,583 firm-fixed-price, cost-plus-fixed-fee contract for non-recurring engineering associated with the production and integration of 600 new CPU/circuit card assembly (CCA) to replace the current AN/ALE-47 dispenser programmer CPU/CCA for various aircraft. The work will be performed in Austin, Texas, and is expected to be completed in December 2012. Contract funds in the amount of $6,669,583 will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This contract was not competitively procured. The Naval Air Systems Command, Patuxent River, Md., is the contracting activity (N00019-10-C-0008).

Rockwell Collins, Inc., Cedar Rapids, Iowa, is being awarded a $6,599,740 modification to a previously awarded firm-fixed-priced contract (N00019-09-C-0069) to exercise an option for the procurement of AN/ARC-210(V) electronic radio and ancillary equipment for the H-1 Helicopter. Equipment being procured includes 88 ARC-210 receiver transmitters; 22 radio set controls; 66 mounting bases; 22 amplifier mounts; 22 high power amplifiers, 22 LNA diplexers; 50 nine- inch tunable antennas and 48 digital converters. Work will be performed in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, and is expected to be completed in May 2011. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The Naval Air Systems Command, Patuxent River, Md., is the contracting activity.

Advex Corp.*, Hampton, Va. (N68335-09-D-0097); Dataline, LLC*, Norfolk, Va. (N68335-09-D-0098); Epsilon Systems Solutions, Inc.*, Portsmouth, Va. (N68335-09-D-0099); Ki, LLC*, Colorado Springs, Colo. (N68335-09-D-0100); Plexus Installations, Inc.*, Baltimore, Md. (N68335-09-D-0102); and Prism Maritime, LLC*, Chesapeake, Va. (N68335-09-D-0103), are each being awarded modifications to previously awarded indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity (IDIQ) multiple-award contracts to exercise options for installation and alteration support services for common aviation support equipment and aircraft launch and recovery equipment. These modifications will increase the ceiling for each of the current IDIQ holders as follows: Advex Corp. to $8,167,103; Dataline, LLC, to $7,120,600; Epsilon Systems Solutions, Inc., to $6,649,677; Ki, LLC, to $7,986,723; Plexus Installations, Inc., to $7,131,933; and Prism Maritime, LLC, to $6,825,482. Work will be performed at various shipboard and shore site locations and is expected to be completed in April 2011. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The Naval Air Warfare Center Aircraft Division, Lakehurst, N.J., is the contracting activity.

AIR FORCE

Wyle Laboratories, Inc., Huntsville, Ala., was awarded a $23,799,062 contract which provides for the Reliability Information Analysis Center to research, test, develop, and deliver operations manuals, change proposals, system assessments/capabilities guides, software version description documents, data procedures documents software user's manuals, and wiring diagrams. At this time, $345,893 has been obligated. 55 CONS/LGCD, Offutt Air Force Base, Neb., is the contracting activity (HC1047-05-D-4005).

Lockheed Martin Corp., Santa Maria, Calif., was awarded a $20,599,510 contract which provides support to complete the Mission Flight Control Center. At this time, no money has been obligated. SMC/ LRSW, El Segundo, Calif., is the contracting activity (F04701-95-C-0029).

Flag Officer Assignments

March 31, 2010 - Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Gary Roughead announced today the following assignments:

Rear Adm. (lower half) Thomas L. Brown II will be assigned as commanding general, Joint Forces Special Operations Command - Iraq, U.S. Forces - Iraq. Brown is currently serving as deputy commander, Special Operations Command Europe, Vaihingen, Germany.

Rear Adm. (lower half) Charles K. Carodine will be assigned as deputy commander, Naval Warfare Development Command, Norfolk, Va. Carodine is currently serving as chief of staff, JTF-100 Maritime Operations Center, U.S. Fleet Forces Command, Norfolk, Va. Rear Adm. Edward H. Deets III will be assigned as commander, Naval Network Warfare Command, Norfolk, Va. Deets is currently serving as vice commander, Naval Network Warfare Command, Norfolk, Va.

Rear Adm. Karen A. Flaherty will be assigned as deputy chief, Bureau of Medicine and Surgery, Washington, D.C. Flaherty is currently serving as deputy chief, wounded, ill, and injured, Bureau of Medicine and Surgery, Washington, D.C.

Capt. Jeffrey Harbeson, who has been selected for promotion to Rear Adm. (lower half), will be assigned as commander, Joint Task Force Guantanamo, U.S. Southern Command, Guantanamo, Cuba. Harbeson is currently serving as deputy director, Surface Warfare for Combat Systems, N86F, Office of the Chief of Naval Operations, Washington, D.C.

Capt. Gretchen S. Herbert, who has been selected for promotion to Rear Adm. (lower half), will be assigned as assistant chief of naval operations for Next Generation Enterprise Network System Program, Office of the Chief of Naval Operations, Washington, D.C. Herbert is currently serving as director, network centric capabilities, N2/N6F1, Office of the Chief of Naval Operations, Washington, D.C.

Rear Adm. (lower half) Jeffrey S. Jones will be assigned as commander, Expeditionary Strike Group Seven/commander, amphibious force, U.S. Seventh Fleet, Okinawa, Japan. Jones is currently serving as director, Iraq Training and Advisory Team Navy, U.S. Forces - Iraq.

Rear Adm. (lower half) William K. Lescher will be assigned as deputy director for resources and acquisition, J8, Joint Staff, Washington, D.C. Lescher is currently serving as director, Operations Division, Office of Budget, Office of the Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Financial Management and Comptroller/director, Operations Division, Fiscal Management Division, N821, Office the Chief of Naval Operations, Washington, D.C.

Rear Adm. (lower half) David H. Lewis will be assigned as program executive officer for ships, Washington, D.C. Lewis is currently serving as vice commander, Naval Sea Systems Command, Washington, D.C.

Rear Adm. (lower half) Ron J. MacLaren will be assigned as military director, Joint Contingency Acquisition Support Officer, Defense Logistics Agency, Fort Belvoir, Va. MacLaren is currently serving as assistant deputy chief of staff for logistics, fleet supply and ordnance, N4, U.S. Pacific Fleet, Pearl Harbor, Hawaii.

Rear Adm. Thomas P. Meek will be assigned as commander, Navy Cyber Forces, Norfolk, Va. Meek is currently serving as director, National Maritime Intelligence Center, Washington, D.C.

Rear Adm. (lower half) James A. Murdoch will be assigned as fleet maintenance officer, U.S. Fleet Forces Command, Norfolk, Va. Murdoch is currently serving as major program manager for littoral combat ships, Program Executive Office for Ships, Washington, D.C.

Pentagon May Extend Tanker Bid Deadline

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

March 31, 2010 - The Defense Department today informed companies interested in bidding on the KC-X aerrial refueling tanker contract that if the European Aeronautics Defense and Space Co. formally expresses an intention to compete, the bidding deadline would be extended 60 days, Pentagon Press Secretary Geoff Morrell said today.

"We are committed to a fair, open and transparent competition in order to get the best airplane to our warfighters at the best value to the taxpayers," Morrell announced in a late-afternoon news conference here.

Officials announced the final request for proposals, the Air Force requirements for the refueling tanker and a May 10 deadline last month. EADS recently expressed interest in the contract and requested a 90-day extension.

"It is not uncommon to grant a reasonable extension in competitions of this sort, and we consider 60 days to be reasonable," Morrell said.

The extension would give EADS and the Boeing Co., another company that has expressed interest, to submit their proposals by July 9.

Morrell also noted that the Pentagon is prepared to expedite the bid evaluation process to ensure production of the tanker begins in early fall.

"Given that this plane is long overdue, and we do not want its delivery date to slip later than it already has, we are prepared to compress our bid evaluation period to stay as close to the original award schedule as possible so as to still award the contract early this fall," he said.

The extension should not be confused with a "willingness to change any of the plane's military requirements or the way bids will be evaluated" in the future, he added, stressing that local and international politics did not influence the decision.

"Politics are not a part of this process --never have been, [and] never will be," he said. "We are basing this strictly on the needs of the warfighter, the law of the land, and our desire to make sure that the taxpayers get their money's worth."

The Air Force KC-135 modernization program contract is estimated to be worth $35 billion

Corporal Helps Cancer Patients


By Marine Corps Gunnery Sgt. Katesha Washington
2nd Marine Logistics Group

March 31, 2010 - Dependable. Determined. Motivated. Those are just three of the many words Marine Corps Gunnery Sgt. Derrick Hayes, assistant staff noncommissioned officer in charge of the flammables section for 2nd Supply Battalion, 2nd Marine Logistics Group, uses to describe Cpl. Dana Hineline. "She is just simply outstanding," he said. "If you need something to get done the right way, the first time, give it to Corporal Hineline, and she will make it happen."

Her strong work ethic and aggressive attitude toward mission accomplishment earned Hineline a meritorious promotion to corporal and are part of the reason why she has been nominated for a meritorious promotion to sergeant.

Hineline first proved her mettle during a deployment to Iraq with Combat Logistics Battalion 2 from August 2008 to March 2009, where she was in charge of communications for her squad and taught classes on the Blue Force Tracker equipment. She also taught courses for countering roadside bombs.

After volunteering to stay in Iraq past her required time, Hineline was selected to deploy to Afghanistan from November to January to be responsible for shipping gear to units.

But the 21-year-old Marine is known for more than her dogged determination and drive to exceed expectations. She is also known as a philanthropist in her community. As a volunteer with the American Cancer Society's Relay for Life, she stays awake for more than 24 hours during the annual walkathon to raise money and support for cancer patients.

"By helping cancer patients, I have learned how to open my arms to anyone in need of help," she explained. "It really hurts to know I can live my life healthy and strong while others are counting down their days to survive. The least I can do is spill my heart out to those individuals."

Hineline also gives her time and money to animal shelters and rescue and adoption agencies. Her goal, she said, is to do whatever she can to make the world a better place, if only with small acts of kindness.

"I think community service starts in small towns and makes a big difference in your country," she said. "There are so many things you can do to help better this world and by getting involved, you can meet new people and have fun when it comes to stepping up and leading."

Hineline said her go-getter attitude stems from her interaction with her Marine Corps Junior ROTC instructor in high school. Encouragement from Gunnery Sgt. Lyndon Smith, a retired Marine, was the main reason Hineline joined the Marine Corps.

"He always encouraged me to better myself," she said. "He taught me everything I know when it comes to drill and discipline. So every time I reach a goal or accomplish a hard task, I make a call to thank him for making me such a good Marine."

In addition to her community service and long work hours, Hineline is working toward her goal of continuing to help people when she retires. She is learning American sign language through a course from Coastal Carolina Community College. Her drive and determination to be a well-rounded Marine, she said, also is preparing her to become a well-rounded woman.

"A real woman always has a goal," she said. "She knows what she wants, and she strives to better herself. In order for a female to really get respect, she needs to hold herself to a higher standard."

Hineline said the next step on her journey is to become a drill instructor.

USO Announces Sesame Workshop Tour Dates

American Forces Press Service

March 31, 2010 - The Sesame Street/USO Experience for Military Families, a free traveling USO show based on Sesame Workshop's award winning "Talk, Listen, Connect" initiative and produced in partnership with Vee, is back in the United States after an around-the-world tour.

The show, which is exclusively for military families, kicks off its second swing through the United States on April 17 at Fort Knox, Ky.

Audiences will experience a 25-minute character performance and receive promotional items and outreach materials, officials said.

The Sesame Street Workshop/USO partnership put on its first show at Twentynine Palms, Calif., in July 2008. Since then, The Sesame Street/USO Experience for Military Families has traveled more than 45,000 miles to 76 bases in nine countries. More than 120,000 servicemembers and families have been entertained during 176 shows.

"The momentum that this show has gathered since it first performed for military kids and families is unbelievable," said Gary E. Knell, Sesame Workshop president and CEO. "To see how families come together and then use the messages from the show to talk to their kids is the greatest reward that we could ask for. We at Sesame Workshop are thrilled to continue this work with our partners and friends at the USO and reinforce our commitment to military families."

Sloan Gibson, USO president, noted the positive impact the tour is having on the military community.

"The fact that more than 100,000 troops and family members have attended these shows so far speaks volumes about the tour's relevance to today's military," Gibson said. "We listen to our troops and understand the challenges they face at home, and are proud to call Sesame Workshop our partner in helping to ease the daily stresses on military families."

Disabled Vets Discover 'Miracle on Mountainside'


By Donna Miles
American Forces Press Service

March 31, 2010 - About 400 disabled veterans here for the 24th annual National Disabled Veterans Winter Sports Clinic -- including about 150 veterans of operations in Iraq and Afghanistan -- aren't anticipating pulling April Fools pranks tomorrow. They're expecting miracles today. And halfway through six days jam-packed days of activities designed to push them to new heights and enhance their rehabilitation, those miracles are beginning to unfold.

"I'm already feeling it," said Noah Currier, a medically retired Marine Corps corporal who is among more than 100 first-timers at the clinic.

Currier returned home safely after two combat deployments with the 1st Marine Division's 1st Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion. He was among the first to deploy to Afghanistan after the 9/11 attacks, and was at the tip of the spear during the U.S. invasion into Iraq in 2003.

But three days after he returned from the second deployment, as he was riding back to Camp Pendleton, Calif., Currier's life took a dramatic turn. The fellow Marine driving from San Diego feel asleep at the wheel, and their vehicle hit a tree and slammed down a 20-foot embankment.

Currier was paralyzed from the chest down.

Seven years later, after whizzing down Snowmass Mountain on adaptive skis at his first winter sports clinic, Currier experienced the kind of adrenaline rush he thought he'd lost forever.

"It was absolutely great! Awesome! I had a blast!" he exclaimed. "It's a feeling of liberation. I wish I'd done it a long time ago."

Currier experienced a phenomenon that's come to be known here as the "Miracle on the Mountainside."

It's ever-present at the winter sports clinic, where veterans of all ages are getting introduced to adaptive Alpine and Nordic skiing, rock climbing, scuba diving, trapshooting, wheelchair fencing, sled hockey, snowmobiling and sled hockey, among other activities.

As they push past their comfort zone and try things many thought they'd never be able to again, they discover a new sense of self-confidence and purpose.

"They say, 'Wow, this is something I can do,'" said Darren Cook, a scuba instructor at the clinic for the past 20 years. "And you see them build that confidence, one step at a time."

Retired Army Sgt. 1st Class John Felix said he, too, has felt the Miracle on the Mountainside. The former recruiter admits he took an emotional nosedive watching multiple sclerosis weaken his body. But just two days into the clinic, realizing he still can enjoy the love of skiing he picked up while stationed in Germany, Felix declared himself new man.

"Yesterday was a major accomplishment," he said of his successful downhill run, with an adaptive ski instructor at his side. "It was the first victory I've had in the last three years."

The victory continued as Felix climbed a rock wall, drawing wild applause from onlookers below as he rang the bell at its apex. Felix said he'll take the can-do attitude he's gained here when he returns home from the clinic.

"I now have a whole new attitude," he said. "I feel like I can go back to Connecticut, and whatever challenges come my way, I can say, 'Bring it on. I can handle it.'"

Heeding the advice of Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric K. Shinseki, a disabled veteran himself who opened the clinic March 28, Felix said he's finding encouragement and inspiration from the other participants.

"I see people with a whole lot more serious issues than I'm dealing with doing amazing things," he said. "And the way I look at it, if they can do it, I can definitely do it."

Daniel Pelacios, a former Army sergeant and long-time participant at the clinic, said he was excited to return after a five-year hiatus to enjoy the camaraderie at the clinic.

"What's really great is the chance to see the new guys, bond with them and help them out," he said. "Because no matter what service they were in or when they served, I find that I have so much in common with them."

"I'm learning so much here, from everyone," said Joey King, a former Marine corporal who was confined to a wheelchair four years after leaving active duty, after a 2008 car accident. "I'm asking lots of questions."

King's attendance at his first winter sports clinic is a rite of passage in itself. Although he lives independently, he's been largely confined to his Wisconsin community since his injury and had yet to get on a plane or check into a hotel room. "It's a whole learning experience," he said.

That was before his first time on skis – ever. Although sore from keeping his forearms so tense during the downhill run, King said, he had a blast screaming down the mountain. He was looking forward to trying his hand at snowmobiling and other activities at the clinic. "I'll try anything," he said.

The Miracle on the Mountainside extends to family members attending the clinic with their loved ones. Valerie Wallace said she's amazed in the transformation she's watching take place in her son, Army Sgt. John Barnes.

Barnes was wounded during a mortar attack while deployed to southwestern Baghdad with the 101st Infantry Division in 2006. Since then, he's struggled with a severe traumatic brain injury that's complicated by post-traumatic stress disorder and substance abuse.

Getting Barnes to the clinic was a challenge in itself, his mother admitted, but she said she's already seeing a breakthrough in the making. He spent two and a half hours on a snowboard, arriving at the bottom of the slope dripping in sweat and the kind of ear-to-ear grin that she said has become so rare since he was wounded.

"Just for him to be out here and do all this, you can't wipe the smile off his face," she said. "There really is something special that's happening here."

Hundreds of volunteers who make the winter sports clinic possible say they, too, feel the magic of the winter sports clinic.

"This is a way for us to come and give a little bit back, but in some ways, it's almost self-serving to be here," said Scott Romme, who has returned to the clinic for the past 10 years to teach scuba diving. "It puts life in perspective. And in a lot of ways, I think we get more out of it than the veterans."

As he talked about the winter sports clinic – a vision he came up with more than two decades ago to help disabled veteran recuperate –clinic director Sandy Trombetta tried to describe what happens during the Miracle on the Mountainside.

Many veterans lose a sense of who they are when they become disabled, he said, but he credited the tremendous support they receive here, along with the healing power of the mountains, with helping them re-establish their identify.

"It's a mind, body, soul experience that affects the spirit," Trombetta said. "And what really makes the difference here are those mountains. It's Mother Nature. You can't come here and not be overwhelmed by the grandeur of these mountains. It's overwhelming."

The winter sports clinic, which continues through April 3, is jointly sponsored by the Department of Veterans Affairs and Disabled American Veterans.

DOD to Host Static Display of Gunslinger Package for Advanced Convoy Security (GunPACS) Vehicle

March 31, 2010 - The Department of Defense will host a display of a Gunslinger Package for Advanced Convoy Security (GunPACS) outfitted vehicle on April 1. The GunPACS display will be held in the North Parking area of the Pentagon Reservation, adjacent to the Pentagon Conference Center, at 11:30 a.m. EDT.

GunPACS is an integrated package of hardware and software which, when installed on a vehicle, provides enhanced situational awareness, immediate threat detection, and cooperative engagement capabilities for group and combat logistics elements. Utilizing networked data fusion, such cooperative engagement enables more accurate and effective fire to protect convoy elements. This security package highlights the department's capacity to rapidly develop, demonstrate, and deliver capabilities to the warfighter for the current fight.

GunPACS capabilities will be on display and available for photographs. Subject matter experts from the program office and its partners will be available to take queries.

Media should arrive at the Pentagon North Parking Security Entrance, near the Pentagon Conference Center, no later than 11:15 a.m. with proof of affiliation and two forms of photo identification. After checking in with the Pentagon Force Protection Officers at the North Parking Entrance, please procede to the display based on their specific instructions. Please e-mail jennifer.elzea@osd.mil no later than 9 a.m. on April 1, if you plan to attend.

New DVD Helps Children Deal With Deployment


By Elaine Wilson
American Forces Press Service

March 31, 2010 - Defense and USO officials joined military families at the U.S. Navy Memorial here yesterday to celebrate the launch of a new DVD created to help military children cope with a parent's deployment. "With You All the Way" -- a joint effort by the Defense Department, USO and the Trevor Romain Co. -- offers school-age children help with preparing for and dealing with all stages of deployment, from pre-deployment to separation to reintegration.

"We are grateful for the dedication and creativity of people like Trevor Romain and the generosity of groups like the USO," said Barbara Thompson, director of the Pentagon's office of family policy and children and youth. "With [their] support, we are better able to help bridge the gap that results from months and miles of separation between children and their parents. This is no small feat and the worthiest of missions."

The free DVD is slated to be distributed through USO centers and Military OneSource in May as part of a children's deployment kit that also contains a stuffed bear called Cuzzie, postcards, a journal and a set of dog tags inscribed "With You All the Way."

"The USO is devoted to supporting the military family, especially military children who aren't able to choose their situations," said Sloan Gibson, USO president. "Our partnership with Trevor Romain allows us to bring unique programming to these individuals, giving them resources to handle some of the tough circumstances and sacrifices that come with being a military child."

Thompson echoed his remarks, calling the DVD a "fantastic resource."

"The DVD helps to let [military children] know that even though it may feel like they are alone, we are with them all the way," she said yesterday.

The DVD follows main characters Jack and Skye as they help their friends Darrell, Pablo and Brittany deal with different aspects of deployment. Darrell's brother is preparing to deploy, Pablo's mother has deployed again, and Brittany is adjusting to having her father back home. It also includes interviews with military families who discuss how they work to stay connected. Noted children's author and motivational speaker Trevor Romain interacts with the characters and guides viewers through the DVD.

When faced with deployment, Thompson noted, parents and children often deal with a gamut of emotions ranging from anger and fear to worry and uncertainty.

"But something else that I know ... is that together they work hard to stay connected and to work through all those feelings," she said.

While it's a natural impulse to want to bottle up or hide feelings, the weight of doing so can take its toll, Thompson said, using the "doughboys" from World War I as an example. They "had a song that told them to 'pack all your troubles in your old kit bag and smile, smile, smile,'" she said.

"Can you imagine how heavy your kit bag – your backpack – would be if you packed it full with your worries?" she said. "Since 1915, we've learned that although you can pack your worries away, you may only want to do so for a while. It might be healthier to take those troubles out of the bag and deal with them."

Thompson lauded the efforts of Romain, who worked closely with the USO and military to ensure the DVD met the needs of military children.

In a blog about the DVD, Romain said he decided to start the project about three years ago after he went on several overseas tours with the USO. "After visiting with these kids, it became very apparent that a resource was needed to help them with deployment," he wrote.

Children relate to his characters because they share many of the same concerns, he wrote. "We try to never shy away from being real and telling the story from a child's perspective.

"If this DVD can give these kids just a little support, some hope and inspiration, and validation of what they are feeling, it will make me extremely happy and proud," he added.

DIA Deputy Discusses Role of Women in Intelligence

By Christen N. McCluney
Emerging Media, Defense Media Activity

March 31, 2010 - The deputy director of the Defense Intelligence Agency celebrated Women's History Month by discussing the contributions women are making to the intelligence field. "I am certainly aware of all the women who have come before me, all of the women who have accomplished truly remarkable things and have blazed the path," Letitia A. "Tish" Long said during a Pentagon Channel interview March 26.

Chosen by Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates to be the next director of the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, Long will become the first woman to lead a major U.S. intelligence agency when she takes office this summer. She emphasized that the intelligence and defense communities have gained a tremendous amount by incorporating not just women, but also more minorities, in the field.

Long started her career building intelligence collection systems for submarines and has more than 30 years of engineering and intelligence experience.

"Intelligence is crucial to good decision making. It's been a good motivator for me," she said, referring to a quote from George Washington that lines the DIA hallway. "There's no issue too small or a problem too large that can't be tackled. We may have to come at it from multiple directions and revisit it several times, but we need to solve those issues and bring opportunities to the table.

"When you have a more diverse population working on any type of intelligence problem," she continued, "you are going to get a broader range of solutions. It's not just cultural or ethnic diversity that produces success, but the cognitive diversity also." Long credits her success to hard work and having good mentors throughout her career, and she encourages other women blazing trails to do the same.

"It's a part of giving back and a part of learning," she said. "I know I'm succeeding if I can look around a room and see three people that can take my job, because it is about mentoring, training and bringing folks along."

She also encourages more women to get involved in intelligence.

"If you are capable, challenge the norm," Long said. "We need all members of our society contributing, and women bring different perspective, lots of great ideas and a lot of capabilities."

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Army Guard Battles Soldier Suicides

By Army Staff Sgt. Jim Greenhill
National Guard Bureau

March 30, 2010 - With 2010 suicide numbers slightly above last year's and coming off the worst January on record, the Army National Guard is emphasizing resilience, transition programs and the importance of asking for help. "We are alarmed by the suicide rates we're seeing inside the Army National Guard," Army Maj. Gen. Raymond W. Carpenter, the component's acting director, told the Senate Appropriations Committee's subcommittee on defense in March 24 testimony.

Suicide confounds easy explanation, and deployment might not be the whole answer.

"Almost half of the suicides we're experiencing are from soldiers who haven't even deployed," Carpenter said. "There's more to this than just the mobilization and deployment piece."

Senators and National Guard leaders discussed unemployment, financial distress, a challenging economy and reluctance to ask for help as contributing factors.

Army National Guard suicides increased 75 percent in 2009, according to Sen. Daniel Inouye, the committee chair. Carpenter said 24 suicides are currently being investigated for 2010, a slight increase over the 22 who had taken their own lives during the same period in 2009.

"Our deploying soldiers and airmen are facing challenges that none of us on this panel certainly ever did in our military careers," said Air Force Gen. Craig R. McKinley, chief of the National Guard Bureau. "The stresses, the strains, the financial difficulties, the times we live in, the stress on the family, the fact that we've had continuous rotations, obviously have created an environment where many of our young soldiers and airmen struggle to make ends meet."

The Air National Guard leverages Army National Guard programs and adds its own initiatives, Air Force Lt. Gen. Harry M. Wyatt III, the director of the Air National Guard, said. Those include existing wing family support coordinators and new behavioral health professionals.

"These individuals will be provided to the adjutants general to be placed within their states at his or her direction," Wyatt explained.

The Guard is making the behavioral health professionals available to all servicemembers. "It's not just exclusively a service provided to the National Guard," Wyatt said. "It's made available to all members of the military."

The Air Guard also is working to assure programs at active duty bases and posts are available to reservists.

"Some of the returning National Guard members are not honest on their post-deployment health assessments, simply because they don't want to be delayed going home," Sen. Patty Murray noted.

Carpenter said the Army is reevaluating those assessments – the first time a study has been done on the Guard and Reserve process in almost three decades.

"The initiative that's being considered at this point is for the soldier to be honest with whatever emotional or physical problems they might have, be allowed to go home and be with their families, and then allow them to return to get the necessary treatment," Carpenter said.

"There's more to this war than just crossing the berm for Baghdad," he said. "The bottom line ... is preparing people for situations that are almost overwhelming. ... We've got to build a resiliency out there to be able to sustain those tough times and to be able to not look at suicide as a viable option."

Army National Guard pieces of the solution include the active duty Army's Soldier Fitness Program and a partnership with the Army Reserve in the Helmets to Hardhats program.

Individual states also have pioneered programs designed to reduce soldier and airman suicides, such as the Kansas National Guard's Flash Forward and the Michigan National Guard's Buddy to Buddy program.

MILITARY CONTRACTS March 30, 2010

NAVY

PAE Government Services, Inc., Los Angeles, Calif., is being awarded an $83,868,260 cost-plus-award-fee, indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity (IDIQ) modification under a previously awarded cost reimbursement and IDIQ contract (N33191-07-D-0207) to exercise Option 3 for base operating support services at Camp Lemonier and forward operating location Manda Bay. The work to be performed provides for, but is not limited to, comprehensive support functions in the following annexes: general information at Annex 1; management and administration at Annex 2; public safety at Annex 4; air operations at Annex 5; ordnance at Annex 7; supply at Annex 10; laundry services at Annex 11; morale, welfare, and recreation at Annex 12; galley at Annex 13; housing at Annex 14; facilities support at Annex 15; utilities at Annex 16; base support vehicles and equipment at Annex 17; and environmental at Annex 18. The total contract amount after exercise of this option will be $295,243,649. Work will be performed in Djibouti, Africa, and Kenya, Africa, and is expected to be completed by April 2011. Contract funds will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The Naval Facilities Engineering Command Europe and Southwest Asia, Naples, Italy, is the contracting activity.

Raytheon Technical Services Co., Indianapolis, Ind., is being awarded $49,912,663 for delivery order #7130 under a Basic Ordering Agreement contract (N00383-07-G-008D) to repair components for the APG 65/73 radar systems used in support of the F/A-18 aircraft. Work will be performed in Indianapolis, Ind. (55 percent); El Segundo, Calif. (30 percent); Forest, Miss. (12 percent); and Andover, Mass. (3 percent). Work is expected to be completed by December 2012. Contract funds will not expire before the end of the fiscal year. This contract was not competitively procured. The Naval Inventory Control Point, Philadelphia, Pa., is the contracting activity.

TEC-AECOM, JV, Charlottesville, Va., was awarded a maximum amount $40,000,000 indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract on March 29 for environmental planning and engineering services for National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and Executive Order (EO) 12114, "Environmental Effects Abroad of Major Federal Actions - Ship Homeporting Issues," at various Navy and Marine Corps facilities and other government facilities worldwide. The work to be performed provides for the preparation of various documents to support the proposed infrastructure-related actions with respect to ship homeporting issues. The preponderance of documents to be prepared under this contract are NEPA documents including the following: categorical exclusions, environmental assessments, and environmental impact statements, as well as environmental reviews and environmental studies under EO 12114. Examples of tasking may also include homeporting of ships, new construction, renovation, base realignment and closure actions, proposed operational actions, and demolitions. Work will predominantly be performed in Virginia (20 percent), Florida (20 percent), California (20 percent), and Washington (20 percent). Work may also be performed within the Naval Facilities Engineering Command Atlantic area of responsibility and the adjacent waters of the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans, including the continental United States, the Caribbean, Europe, and North Africa (20 percent). Tasks associated with this contract may be assigned anywhere in the world. The term of the contract is not to exceed 60 months, with an expected completion date of March 2015. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This contract was competitively procured via the Navy Electronic Commerce Online Web site, with five proposals received. The Naval Facilities Engineering Command, Atlantic, Norfolk, Va., is the contracting activity (N62470-10-D-3008).

BAE Systems, Inc., Nashua, N.H., is being awarded a $9,233,109 modification to a previously awarded cost-plus-incentive-fee contract (N00039-09-C-0129) for the production of the first optional compact low frequency active transmit system and spares. This contract includes additional options which, if exercised, would bring the cumulative value of this contract to an estimated $29,709,200. Work will be performed in Hudson, N.H., and is expected to be completed by September 2011; if all options are exercised, work will be completed by December 2014. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This contract was not competitively. The Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command, San Diego, Calif., is the contracting activity (N00039-09-C-0129).

Boeing Co., St. Louis, Mo., is being awarded a $6,395,328 firm-fixed-price delivery order against a previously issued Basic Ordering Agreement (N00019-05-G-0026) for 144 retrofit kits under the Engineering Change Proposal 6240R1, "FT 50 18K Main Landing Gear Sidebrace Fitting Failure - Revision for Retrofit" for the F/A-18E/F aircraft. Work will be performed in El Segundo, Calif., and is expected to be completed in October 2014. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The Naval Air Systems Command, Patuxent River, Md., is the contracting activity.

Northrop Grumman Shipbuilding, Inc., Newport News, Va., is being awarded a $13,200,000 modification for planned and growth supplemental work under a previously awarded contract (N00024-08-C-2100) for the accomplishment of the fiscal 2008 Extended Drydocking Selected Restricted Availability (EDSRA) of USS Enterprise (CVN 65). As a result of this contract modification, the total estimated amount of this contract will be $654,854,987. This contract modification is in accordance with the overall program plan for the CVN 65 EDSRA. EDSRAs are similar to overhauls in that they restore the ship, including all subsystems that affect combat capability and safety, to established performance standards. Additionally, an EDSRA provides an opportunity to perform hull inspections, recoating, and other maintenance related evolutions below the waterline that cannot be accomplished while the ship is waterborne. The EDSRA provides sufficient time to perform more extensive repairs and testing than are possible during an extended selected restricted availability. Work that results from subsystem open and inspects is added to the contract as it is identified. Work will be performed in Newport News, Va., and is expected to be completed in April 2010. Contract funds in the amount of $13,200,000 will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The Naval Sea Systems Command, Washington Navy Yard, D.C., is the contracting activity.

Raytheon Co., El Segundo, Calif., is being awarded a $6,223,862 modification to a previously awarded firm-fixed-price contract (N00019-06-C-0310) for integrated logistics support of the advanced targeting/forward looking infrared pods for the F/A-18C/D and F/A-18E/F aircraft. Work will be performed in McKinney, Texas (98 percent), and El Segundo, Calif. (2 percent), and is expected to be completed in January 2011. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The Naval Air Systems Command, Patuxent River, Md., is the contracting activity.

U.S. SPECIAL OPERATIONS COMMAND

L-3 Communications Corp., EOS Division, Garland, Texas, is being awarded a two-year indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract for the purchase of MX 10160 image intensifier assemblies in support of U.S. Special Operations Command Headquarters Procurement Division. The work will be performed in Tempe, Ariz., and is expected to be completed in 2012. The estimated value of the contract is $30,000,000. The contract number is H92222-10-D-0012.

L-3 Communications Vertex Aerospace, LLC, Madison, Miss., is receiving a firm-fixed-price modification of $6,260,514 for exercise of option periods one and two, providing an additional six months of lease services of four helicopters for pilot training in support of U.S. Special Operations Command, Air Force Special Operations Command, beginning on April 1, 2010, and ending Sept. 30, 2010. Work will be performed at Hurlburt Field, Fla. The contract modification number is H92222-09-C-0048-P00005.

AIR FORCE

Wyle Laboratories, Inc., Huntsville, Ala., was awarded a $23,847,566 contract which provides for the Reliability Information Analysis Center to research, test, develop, and deliver concept recommendations, architecture analysis, ontological models, alternatives analysis, life-cycle costs estimates, prototype development assessments, and prototype tools. At this time, $797,000 has been obligated. 55 CONS/LGCD, Offutt Air Force Base, Neb., is the contracting

Senior Executive Service Appointments and Reassignments

March 30, 2010 - Secretary of Defense Robert M. Gates announced the following Department of Defense Senior Executive Service appointments and reassignments:

Appointments

Donald J. McKenzie has been appointed to the Senior Executive Service and is assigned as assistant director, integrity and quality assurance, Defense Contract Audit Agency, Fort Belvoir, Va. McKenzie previously served as deputy director, field detachment, Defense Contract Audit Agency, Chantilly, Va.

Thomas P. Michelli has been appointed to the Senior Executive Service and is assigned as executive director, enterprise solutions, information operations, Defense Logistics Agency, Fort Belvoir, Va. Michelli previously served as supervisory information technology specialist, information operations, Defense Logistics Agency, Fort Belvoir, Va.

Larnell B. Exum has been appointed to the Senior Executive Service and is assigned as deputy assistant secretary of defense for House affairs, Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Legislative Affairs, Washington, D.C. Exum previously served as deputy chief, Senate Army liaison for the Department of the Army, Washington, D.C.

Retired Vice Adm. Bruce MacDonald has been appointed to the Senior Executive Service and is assigned as director, Office of the Convening Authority, Immediate Office of the Secretary of Defense, Washington, D.C. MacDonald previously served as the judge advocate general of the Navy, Washington, D.C.

Reassignments

David B. Bennett has been assigned as deputy program executive officer, Global Information Grid Enterprise Services, Defense Information Systems Agency, Falls Church, Va. Bennett previously served as deputy program executive officer, command & control capabilities, Defense Information Systems Agency, Falls Church, Va.

Martin R. Gross has been assigned as deputy program executive officer, command & control capabilities, Defense Information Systems Agency, Falls Church, Va. Gross previously served as deputy program executive officer, Global Information Grid Enterprise Services, Defense Information Systems Agency, Falls Church, Va.

Ramona L. Lush has been assigned as deputy director, property, plant, and equipment policy, Office of the Secretary of Defense (Acquisition, Technology and Logistics), Washington, D.C. Lush previously served as the deputy director, acquisition management, Office of the Secretary of Defense (Acquisition, Technology and Logistics), Washington, D.C.

Transcom to Receive 'Unsung Hero' Recognition


By John J. Kruzel
American Forces Press Service

March 30, 2010 - The U.S. military command responsible for moving troops and cargo around the world will receive recognition for its role as one of the Defense Department's unsung heroes, Pentagon Press Secretary Geoff Morrell said today.

Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates is slated to travel to U.S. Transportation Command headquarters at Scott Air Force Base, Ill., on April 1 to bestow the Joint Meritorious Unit Award.

"Secretary Gates believes the members of Transcom are among the unsung heroes of our military efforts around the world, and this award allows him to personally thank this dedicated and unheralded team of professionals," Morrell told Pentagon reporters today.

The department award honors organizations that demonstrate outstanding support of the nation's men and women in uniform, Morrell said.

Over the last three years, Transcom has moved more than 5 billion gallons of fuel, 8.5 million short tons of cargo and 5 million passengers, Morrell said, noting that "these numbers only tell part of the story."

"Without their tireless work," he said, "our missions in Iraq, Afghanistan, and indeed around the world, would eventually grind to a halt."

A centerpiece of Gates' agenda as defense secretary has been to field mine-resistant, ambush-protected vehicles, or MRAPs, to troops in Iraq, and smaller versions to servicemembers in Afghanistan as quickly as possible. The vehicles, which feature a V-shaped hull that deflects the impact of roadside bombs, has been credited with saving lives and limbs since being adopted downrange.

"Transcom has responded superbly to this urgent requirement and, since late 2007, has delivered roughly 450 vehicles per month," Morrell said.

Beyond the battlefield, Transcom also played an instrumental role in U.S. relief efforts in Haiti following the devastating earthquake there last month.

"In responding to the catastrophic earthquake in Haiti," Morrell said, "Transcom has provided over 2 million meals, more than 5 million liters of water to the island, in ongoing humanitarian and disaster-relief operations."

Joining Gates at the award ceremony will be Army Gen. David H. Petraeus, commander of U.S. Central Command, who oversees operations in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Transcom, which was established in 1987, has transported tens of thousands of sick or injured troops out of the current conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan. Due in large part to the command's efficiency, defense officials have said, a medical evacuation back to the United States takes only a fraction of the amount of time it took in Vietnam.

Clinic Provides Disabled Vets Pathway to Paralympics


By Donna Miles
American Forces Press Service

March 30, 2010 - Air Force veteran Sean Halsted was a decent skier before he fell 40 feet out of a helicopter while on a fast rope during a search-and-rescue training exercise in 1998. Paralyzed from the waist down, he feared his active days were behind him. Three years after his accident, Halsted reluctantly attended his first National Disabled Veterans Winter Sports Clinic.

"I thought it was crazy for anybody to be in a wheelchair up on the mountains," he said. "I knew how hard it was to walk bi-pedally in the snow. Why would anybody want to do it in a chair?"

But Halsted discovered Nordic skiing and was hooked. "I got to a level where I said, 'Wow, this is fun,'" he said, excited about the chance to once again ski with his brothers in arms.

Halsted soon began skiing competitively, rising to become the world's 10th-ranked adaptive cross-country skier. This year, he returned to the clinic a champion after showing the world his stuff during the 2010 Paralympic Winter Games in Vancouver, Canada.

Halsted was among five disabled veterans, two of whom served in Iraq and Afghanistan, represented on the U.S. ski team at the Vancouver games.

Army Staff Sgt. Health Calhoun, who lost both legs to a rocket-propelled grenade attack while serving in Mosul, Iraq, with the 101st Airborne Division, competed in alpine skiing. He also served as the U.S. flag bearer during the opening ceremonies.

Army Sgt. Andrew Soule competed as a biathlete and cross-country skier, winning the bronze medal in the sitting 2.4-kilometer pursuit biathlon. Soule had both legs amputated above the knee after an improvised explosive device detonated beneath his Humvee in Afghanistan in 2005.

Chris Devlin-Young, a Coast Guard veteran, returned for his fourth Paralympics as an alpine skier with four medals – two gold and two silver -- under his belt.

And Army Sgt. Patrick McDonald participated in his first Paralympics games this year, making the team after only two years of wheelchair curling.

All four veteran Paralympic skiers got their first exposure to adaptive skiing at the National Disabled Veterans Winter Sports Clinic here. And as Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric K. Shinseki noted March 28 during the opening ceremonies for this year's clinic, the experience changed their lives.

Shinseki, who led the U.S. delegation during the opening ceremony for the Vancouver games, said he was "absolutely blown away" by what he discovered there. Here at the winter sports clinic, he encouraged the 400 participants to take inspiration from their example.

"Life may have changed for these athletes, but they did not. They would not let themselves be handicapped by limitations," he told the disabled veterans, about 150 of whom served in Iraq or Afghanistan. "Life has changed for many of you, but you have not. I hope you are as excited about the experiences and the challenges that lie before you as we are."

Many more disabled veterans have what it takes to follow in the Paralympians' tracks, he said. They're "tough former military people who have been highly disciplined, highly motivated [and] done some of the most difficult missions in the world."

Shinseki said he hopes the winter sports clinic will encourage some to take that capability and "step into the unknown" as their Paralympic comrades did.

Halsted said doing so helped him conquer his personal fears. "What used to be a mountain is now a molehill," he said.

Like Halsted, Devlin-Young said he reluctantly agreed to participate in the first clinic in 1985, three years after a C-130 aircraft crash left him a paraplegic. He was mad at the world at the time about losing use of his legs and had little interest in trying out skiing, he said.

But the first time down the hill, he was hooked. "It gave me adrenaline and control. It gave me my life back," he said.

Shinseki conceded that not every disabled veteran who aims to become a Paralympian will make it. "In fact, the vast majority of them won't," he acknowledged. "But the vast majority of them have a chance to live life differently than they might have had they not had this experience."

Even if they never get selected to the Paralympic team, "if they live the other 51 weeks of their year with the same drive and energy and commitment and discipline about being the best, they are going to live different lives," he told American Forces Press Service. "It is not going to be a life of dependence and regretting what might have been. They will discover that there is a lot of living left to do, and they will go out and get it."

The military Paralympians "are folks who have decided they are not going to let anything stand in their way," Shinseki said. "If we could capture 10 percent of that mental commitment and pass it on to the 400 that are here this week, the result is: I won't see them in hospitals. They won't be lying around in hospital beds or on couches. They are going to be up living life, doing more than they ever thought they could."

The winter sports clinic, called the "Miracle on the Mountainside," offers a window to what's possible, Shinseki said. "For us, Snowmass is about giving folks that opportunity – that rehabilitative, recuperative opportunity – to discover their own miracle," he added.

Several other veteran Paralympians are here at the winter sports clinic helping inspire their fellow disabled veterans. Army veteran Jim Martinson, an Army veteran who also got his first exposure to adaptive skiing at clinic, went on to win the gold medal in downhill skiing at the 1996 Paralympics in Albertville, France.

Earlier this month, as he attended the Vancouver games as a delegate, Martinson said, he recalled his own experience at the winter sports clinic as he watched other military veterans compete.

"I remember getting in that monoski and learning how to ski and coming to this program in the beginning days [of the clinic]," he said. "I can't wait to go to the next Paralympics, and I can't wait to see someone from this group" competing, he said.

Army veteran Chad Colley, who earned two gold medals at the 1996 Paralympics in Albertville, France, said he's not out to make every participant at the winter sports clinic a ski racer. "What we want to do," said the Vietnam veteran who lost both legs and an arm, "is expose them to the potential they might not even know they have."

Also at this year's clinic are Air Force veteran Peter Axelson and Army veteran Russell Wolfe. Axelson competed in the 1986, 1988 and 1990 Paralympics, earning seven medals. Wolfe began competing in archery at the 1999 National Veterans Wheelchair Games. He went on to compete as an archer on the U.S. Paralympics Team in 2004 and 2008.

Sandy Trombetta, founder and director of the National Disabled Veterans Winter Sports Clinic, called these Paralympians' accomplishments an example of "the great things that veterans with disabilities can achieve."

To this year's participants, he posed the question: "Who among you will be the next to break down your personal barriers and represent our country in the next Paralympics?"

Force Structure Actions at Joint Base Lewis-Mcchord, Washington Announced

March 30, 2010 - The Department of the Army announced today the planned activation of the National Center for Telehealth and Technology at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash.

This stationing action represents an increase of eight military and 67 civilian authorizations and is expected to be completed in April 2010.

The mission of the National Center for Telehealth and Technology is to foster, develop, research, and deploy technology solutions for psychological health and traumatic brain injury and deliver relevant, evidence-based applications for our warriors, veterans, and their families.

This force structure action complies with the recommendations of the President's Commission on Care for America's Returning Wounded Warriors (Dole/Shalala Report) and the assistant secretary of defense (health affairs) memorandum, Defense Center of Excellence for Psychological Health and Traumatic Brain Injury.

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.

Sailor Takes on New Challenges


By Elaine Wilson
American Forces Press Service

March 30, 2010 - Navy Lt. j.g. Kara Sartain has risen in the ranks and in her career through a combination of hard work and sheer determination. In less than five years, she earned a college degree, went from enlisted sailor to naval officer and tackled a new job that was a 180-degree shift from before.

Her drive, she said, comes from a desire to excel. "I always feel like I could be doing more, giving more," she said. "I don't want to ever peak."

Sartain joined the Navy in 2001, seeking to expand her horizons beyond her small hometown of Woodstock, Conn. She walked into the recruiter's office knowing exactly what she wanted to do in the Navy.

"I told the recruiter, 'Give me something medical,'" she said. Her father had died of cancer when she was 12, sparking her interest in the career field.

"Since I couldn't help my father, my situation, I wanted to help others," Sartain said. "Plus, there's something selfless about serving others."

Sartain was 17 at the time and still in high school. After a year in the delayed enlistment program, she entered the Navy and served as a corpsman at the National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, Md., for several years, serving in intensive care units.

"I liked the job a lot," she said. "It seemed to come natural for me. I couldn't get enough."

While working in a cardiac intensive care unit, she was selected to serve on the medical team that cares for the president when he comes to Bethesda. "I felt like I got lucky," she said.

She rose in the ranks to petty officer 3rd class, but felt she had stalled at that point and "wanted something more." Then one day she saw some midshipmen in "funny" outfits and found out they were cadets in the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Md. "I decided I wanted to go there," she said.

Sartain worked on her application package for more than a year. Her SAT scores resulted in her application being turned down, but she didn't take no for an answer. "I took them over and over, and they were finally high enough," she said.

The Navy first sent her to a prep school in Rhode Island to brush up on her academics. She then attended the academy from 2004 to 2008.

"I had to work super hard," Sartain said. "I was surrounded by super smart kids. I worked weekends and nights, and I passed."

Through it all, Sartain found time to fall in love with an enlisted sailor who also went on to become an officer. They married a week after she graduated from the academy.

Unable to gain entry into the academically challenging medical officer career field, Sartain graduated as a surface warfare officer and asked to be stationed on the USS Bainbridge to stay close to her husband. She oversaw a division of 18 sailors who were in charge of boat handling, anchoring and the flight deck. "Here I was, a little blonde girl from Connecticut, in charge of a rowdy group," she said. "But they were awesome."

She next moved on to become an auxiliaries officer, overseeing a division of seven. "We own all of the auxiliary systems on board -- the air conditioning unit, refrigeration systems, galley equipment – anything with a motor," she explained.

The key to success, she said, is "being flexible. It's a fast-paced mission."

Last year, Sartain participated in the highly publicized rescue of Capt. Richard Phillips after Somali pirates attempted to hijack the ship Maersk Alabama.

Always up for new challenges, Sartain said she and her husband would like to be stationed overseas, and she hasn't given up on her quest to enter the medical field.

"I'm working on a package to serve in the medical service corps," she explained, noting that, this time around, she would be serving in administration.

"It's all gone by so fast," she said. "I've been to four or five countries already and work with some awesome people. It sure got me out of my small hometown."