F. E. WARREN AIR FORCE BASE, Wyo. --
To the everyday Airmen of F.E. Warren Air Force Base, Wyoming, where the money is going on base and how projects get planned may not be something they know or even care about. Little do they know, projects are to benefit.
“It’s hard to narrow down the amazing work the acquisition teams accomplish on the daily basis into a single project I’m most proud of,” said Major Bryce Fiacco, 90th Contracting Squadron commander. “Certainly the many roofs we’ve replaced and are continuing to replace across the base enable functions like our Maintenance Group to continue their critical role in support of the base’s mission.
While the infrastructure sees improvement, the equipment side isn’t left out.
“This past year we were able to get the Force Support Squadron much needed new equipment for the dining facility,” said Major Nelson Mitchell, 90th Comptroller Squadron commander. “Also, being able to provide the Communication Squadron with much needed infrastructure is cool. All the other quality of life items we have been able to purchase is nice as well.”
Many of the projects are decided upon by a group rather than just one individual.
“Acquisition decisions are never made by a single individual within the government,” said Fiacco. “Instead, it is a team effort of the comptroller, contracting, the Small Business Administration, the requirement owners, and, of course, leadership.”
Having a team decide on projects is a sure way to make sure all the Airmen on base are being considered when decisions are made rather than what one person thinks the base needs.
“We have corporate meetings that decide prioritization of requirements because money is a finite resource,” said Mitchell. “There is never enough to go around, so we have these meetings for prioritization and ensuring.”
As far as plans for the future go, that is dependent on the needs of the base.
“The needs of the base are constantly changing, shifting, and evolving to improve our mission capabilities and Airmen’s quality of life,” said Fiacco.
While some ideas are still in the works, there are some projects that are set in stone albeit a ways out into the future.
“The really big stuff like the new Helicopter and GBSD are coming but those still down the line,” said Mitchell. “In the immediate future we are here to support the ever changing needs and wants of the base.”
The amount of money that goes into a project isn’t necessarily indicative on the impact it can have on the airmen and a community.
“The dollar value of the project itself isn’t aligned to its significance. The innovations which Airmen around the base find everyday can have enormous impacts and cost very little,” said Fiacco. “Higher dollar values may look great on an awards package, but I’d much rather a project which improves our capabilities, regardless of the price.”
Dollar values don’t mean much to leadership if at the end of the day the Airmen aren’t benefitting from it.
“In the end as long as it improves the environment Airmen work in to complete the mission, that is what matters,” said Mitchell. “In previous locations, I have been able to pull off $10 million Intel training building upgrades and $10 thousand upgrades for grills located in the dorms.”
When asked if he preferred bigger or smaller projects, Mitchell said both can have a tremendous impact to capabilities of quality of life.
“The ‘thank you for getting that for us’ or ‘you have no idea how much this means to us’ is what matters,” Mitchell said.
With the additional funds acquired their team were able to buy down other projects like the plan to resurface the parent child area at Freedom Hall and to also replace the roof for building 324.
With the past success of everyone involved in the decision making on what projects get funded, it’s safe to say the Airmen of F.E Warren Air Force Base have a team with their best interest in mind.