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NEWS | Jan. 8, 2013

SPAWAR celebrates 2012 accomplishments

By Capt. Mark Glover Space and Naval Warfare Systems Center Atlantic commanding officer

I'd like to bring to your attention some of the great things that have happened at Space and Naval Systems Center Atlantic recently. A celebration to commemorate the rapid acquisition, integration of electronics and delivery of more than 27,000 mine-resistant, ambush-protected vehicles sent to Iraq and Afghanistan was held at SSC Atlantic's Vehicle integration facility Dec. 10, 2012, at Joint Base Charleston - Weapons Station, S.C.

The MRAP vehicle program has been a group effort; it could not have been done without the Joint Base Charleston team. I'd like to thank our fellow shipmates at the 841st Army Battalion who loaded hundreds of vehicles at a time for shipment through the deep water port, the 437th and 315th Airlift Wings for rapidly delivery of the vehicles into theater by C-17s and for the work done by the Army Strategic Logistics Activity - Charleston and other joint base partners to make sure these lifesaving vehicles were delivered to warfighters as expeditiously as possible .

Former Secretary of Defense Robert Gates and current Deputy Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter said, "The MRAP program was the first major defense acquisition program to go from concept to full-scale production in less than a year since World War II."

Initially integrating five vehicles a day at the SPAWAR vehicle integration facility, the team ramped up to full-rate production of 50 vehicles per day by early December 2007. The integration team continued to meet the demand signal rate and completed the integration of as many as 75 MRAP vehicles in a single day.

During the ceremony, Christopher Miller, SSC Atlantic Executive Director, echoed the praise of the other speakers at the event.

"I am proud to be associated with this historical life-saving campaign," said Miller. "During the past five years, there have been many congressional and senior defense and military officials visiting SPAWAR; the first thing they want to see is the MRAP Vehicle integration facility and to thank the dedicated workers who have worked around the clock to make it happen. Many of our SPAWAR/Industry workforces are veterans; each one of them understand that every day when they come to work they are helping to save the lives of warfighters."

A new banner now hangs in the SPAWAR vehicle integration facility which reflects the more than 27,000 MRAP/MATV vehicles integrated. Everyone involved can take great pride in this modern day example of working together for a direct result to save the lives and limbs of the warfighters making sacrifices for the freedoms we enjoy.

I'm also pleased to announce SSC Atlantic was awarded the 2012 Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics Workforce Development Gold Award for large organizations Dec. 17, 2012, at the Pentagon's Hall of Heroes.

The award, accepted by Miller, recognizes SSC Atlantic as a DOD acquisition, technology and logistics organization with more than 500 employees that has made exemplary contributions to career-long development of its acquisition workforce.

"This award is an honor and a true testament to SSC Atlantic's commitment to providing an outstanding working environment for our workforce," said Miller. "This prestigious award demonstrates the exceptional dedication and work of the entire SSC Atlantic team."

SSC Atlantic's career development contributions included tuition assistance, graduate programs, leadership development programs and specialized training focused on building capability to deliver new technologies to customers.