Wolfowitz Lauds Top Military Installations
By Donna Miles
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, May. 7, 2004 Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz praised the hard work and dedication of five military installations honored today as the "best of the best" as recipients of this year's Commander in Chief's Award for Installation Excellence.
Speaking at a Pentagon ceremony marking the 20th anniversary of the award, Wolfowitz credited the efforts and innovation of those who operate and maintain outstanding U.S. military installations around the world.
"Our installations are the home of U.S. combat power, and our installation assets are an inseparable element of the nation's military readiness and wartime effectiveness," he said.
Winners of the 2004 Command in Chief Annual Award for Installation Excellence are:
Army -- Fort Stewart, Hinesville, Ga.;
Marine Corps -- Marine Corps Air Station, Miramar, San Diego, Calif.;
Navy -- Naval Air Engineering Station, Lakehurst, N.J.;
Air Force -- Beale Air Force Base, Marysville, Calif.; and
Defense Logistics Agency -- Defense Supply Center Columbus, Ohio.
Each installation was selected from others within its service or agency for making the best use of its resources to sustain the mission, increase workforce productivity and enhance the quality of life of its people, explained Ray DuBois, deputy undersecretary for installations and environment.
Wolfowitz said installations honored, and other outstanding installations throughout DoD, are carrying out the important job of "supporting and sustaining those great men and women" who are guarding the national defense and taking the fight to the enemy.
"We like to talk about combat power and about the 'point of the spear,'" Wolfowitz told the audience. "But a spear requires a long staff. And in the 21st century, that staff is made up of defense installations here at home and around the world."
Wolfowitz said the DoD is committed to ensuring the staff that supports the "spear" remains strong with "the right people, the right weapons and the right support systems, all working together, efficiently and effectively."
He said the department's ongoing transformation effort includes, in addition to new technology and business practices, a commitment to sustaining, restoring and modernizing its installation assets and services. This includes eliminating excess and obsolete facilities that plague U.S. military installation.
"Support for the warfighter requires a long-term, day-to-day commitment to deliver quality training, modern and well-maintained weapons and equipment; a safe, secure and productive workplace; a healthy environment; and good living conditions for service members and their families," he said.