AFCEC Celebrates Ten Years of Supporting the Installation Battle Ready, Built Right > Air Force Materiel Command > Article Display

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-LACKLAND, Texas – On October 1, 2012, Air Force leaders activated the Air Force Civil Engineering Center to provide centralized civil engineering support and expertise. Ten years later, AFCEC is celebrating a decade of providing “Battle Ready, Built Right” support to installations around the world.

“‘Battle Ready’ is our connection to the fighter,” said Joe Sciabica, AFCEC’s first director. “Everything we do is to support the men and women around the world who accomplish the Air Force mission. ‘Built Right’ is a standard…for our buildings and infrastructure, and for all of EC company.”

A year before the merger, the Air Force suffered major budget cuts — more than $33 billion over a five-year period — and lost 1,600 civilian CE positions. Air Force leaders saw the centralization of functions managed by the Air Force Center for Engineering and the Environment, the Air Force Real Property Agency, and the Air Force Civil Engineer Support Agency as the best solution to take care of the CE business.

“We were basically trying to build an airplane while it was flying,” Sciabica said. “The biggest challenge was establishing new processes to support a wider range of capabilities across more than 180 installations.”

One of the most critical needs was to ensure facilities received accurate support funding for critical base assets. AFCEC leaders focused on real estate accountability and record keeping and establishing a transparent process for strategic storage and stacking of facility maintenance, restoration and upgrade requirements .

With the support of a dedicated team, AFCEC reached full operational capability in just over a year, Sciabica said.

Less than two years after reaching FOC, AFCEC joined five other realigned agencies to support the new Air Force Installation and Mission Support Center. As the primary subordinate unit of mid-level headquarters, the AFCEC plays a critical role in providing CE-related installation and mission support capabilities to all Air Force installations and of the space force, to the main commands and to the units of direct report.

“The transition under AFIMSC was a much easier process because by then AFCEC had already established a culture. We worked together inside and outside the office through meetings and discussions. ‘team-building events, like holiday parties and chili kitchens, to better understand who we all were and our goals for the organization,’ said Gaye Schwarm, secretary for the past six years. and AFCEC commanders. “During those times, we became a family.”

With the motto “Your Success is Our Mission”, AFIMSC built on the trust and relationships AFCEC had built with MAJCOMs and Mission Support Groups to advance installation and deployment capabilities. mission support.

As part of AFIMSC, AFCEC implemented the priority capabilities that Sciabica and company launched ten years ago.

AFCEC created the first integrated priority list in 2014, taking detailed information from MAJCOMs and facilities and assigning scores to build an ordered two-year asset management list focused on risks to Airmen and missions. Today, the Air Force’s comprehensive asset management plan supports a five-year perspective to plan and prioritize FSRM projects and target critical installation needs.

When Brig. General William Kale assumed command in August, AFCEC had recently completed the deployment of NexGen IT to 179 installations. The seven-year effort was a total transition to a single enterprise system data source.

“Having accurate records and real-time data is a powerful business intelligence tool,” Kale said.

Over the years, AFCEC has deployed a suite of tools and resources that provide decision makers with the business intelligence and enterprise insight they need to meet new and emerging mission requirements. From the KC-46A Pegasus and F-35A Lightening to the future B-21 Raider stealth bomber and T-7A Red Hawk, AFCEC has managed billions of dollars in military construction to provide the infrastructure needed to expand its global reach .

“What we do extends beyond the flight line and the runway,” Kale said. “Facilities are where our Airmen and Guardians live, train and work…they are power projection platforms and communities.”

In 2019, the Air Force Housing Privatization Team launched a responsive plan to address resident health and safety issues. AFCEC has launched 51 initiatives to improve housing quality and maintenance, empower residents, and improve the overall resident experience.

“We are committed to providing Airmen, Guardians and their families with access to safe, quality homes and secure communities,” Kale said. “We listened to our families, heard their needs and took action.”

Among the improvements, residents now have a Tenant Bill of Rights, Resident Advocates, an increase in staff at base military housing offices, and a process in place to elevate health and safety concerns.

The Housing Improvement Plan was not the first time AFCEC was tasked with developing and leading a company-wide response plan to an emerging health and safety issue.

In May 2016, the Environmental Protection Agency established lifetime health advisories for two organic chemicals within a group of synthetic fluorinated chemicals known as per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, or PFAS. The chemicals were commonly used in non-stick cookware and stain resistant fabrics. They were also components of the water-based fire-fighting foam used to put out petroleum fires.

AFCEC conducted a three-step approach to identify AFFF releases, respond to drinking water impacts, and prevent and protect against future releases. In total, AFCEC has spent more than $1.34 billion on PFAS actions, eliminated more than 979,000 gallons of legacy AFFF, and retrofitted vehicles with Eco System Kits at all facilities.

AFCEC’s mission continues to evolve to meet emerging needs. When Hurricane Michael destroyed most of Tyndall AFB in October 2018, AFCEC was among the first to respond. The massive recovery and reconstruction effort at Tyndall, followed by a devastating flood at Offutt AFB, Nebraska, in March 2019 demanded a strategic reserve of expertise that AFCEC was uniquely positioned to provide.

AFCEC created the Natural Disaster Recovery Division to recover and rebuild bases with adaptive, resilient, right-sized, and financially sustainable infrastructure that enhances combat power. At Tyndall, the division is tackling a five- to seven-year reconstruction effort that includes 44 new military construction and 260 FSRM projects valued at $4.9 billion.

Today, AFCEC’s 2,200-person team, based in 72 locations around the world, offers seven core capabilities: built infrastructure investment and recapitalization, energy assurance, compliance and environmental restoration, integrated base response and recovery, real estate and property management, civil engineer business health assessment. and Integrated planning of infrastructure investment needs.

Looking to the future, the focus is increasingly on innovation and new technologies, but Kale said AFCEC’s central goal is to be a one-stop-shop for CE support. .

“We equip the field with new CE technologies and building the facility of the futurebut our most important job is to answer the call for help and provide the CE community with responsive and comprehensive civil engineering expertise and support.

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