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News | Sept. 15, 2020

DLA Distribution San Joaquin wins the Commander In Chief’s Installation Excellence Award 

By Annette Silva, DLA Distribution San Joaquin Public Affairs

Defense Logistics Agency Distribution San Joaquin, California, along with their nine DLA organizations that comprise the installation, was selected as a winner of the prestigious Commander In Chief’s Installation Excellence Award.

“Everyone at DDJC is honored to receive this prestigious award. It reflects the dedication and professionalism of every employee from all the organizations on our installation,” said Installation Commander Marine Col. Tiffany Harris.

The Commander in Chief's Award for Installation Excellence recognizes the outstanding and innovative efforts of the people who operate and maintain U.S. military installations. It is presented annually to one installation from each branch of service and DLA in the Department of Defense category.

The distribution center takes pride in serving as DoD’s Western Strategic Distribution Platform and DLA’s primary distribution point to the western U.S., Pacific and Indian Ocean regions. The Distribution San Joaquin team coordinates storage and distribution, materiel logistics, wildfire support, and unitized group rations in support of DoD, interagency partners, foreign allies and first responder customers, to deliver materiel requirements on time, every time.

It would not be possible  for the distribution center  to expertly warehouse and manage over 385,000 national stock numbers valued at approximately $8 billion, and ship more than 1.8 million line items valued in excess of $3.6 billion, without the outstanding working relationships with DLA Installation Management San Joaquin, DLA Information Operations and support from Distribution San Joaquin’s local union American Federation of Government Employees 1546 partners. These organizations are vital to the success of DDJC’s mission providing superb infrastructure support, information technology support and strong partnering with the union and management across the installation.

Award nominees were selected based on performance criteria such as mission support, quality of life, energy and environment, unit morale, safety and health, communications, security, and public relations. Some highlights of Distribution San Joaquin’s winning submission include the following:

Mission Support – The distribution center demonstrated a tremendous level of resilience in the effort of meeting the objective to reposition Class IV materiel from storage at San Joaquin to San Diego, California and Corpus Christi, Texas, in support of the Defense Support to Civil Authorities border security efforts, later named Faithful Patriot. The team oversaw the receipt, processing, staging and onward movement of mission-critical rations and construction and barrier materials, shipping requisitions across three states to 13 customer locations. In total, DDJC shipped over 11,000 cases of meals, 52,000 fence posts, and over 31,000 rolls of barbed and concertina wire in less than four months, meeting directed delivery dates.

DDJC’s operational reach extends beyond the installation with the employment of the DLA Deployable Expeditionary team. This team stood ready to deploy at a moment’s notice to provide distribution capabilities in support of the DoD’s global national security mission requirements, including combat, contingencies, and emergency operations, humanitarian and civic assistance activities, disaster relief, restoration of order, drug interdiction, and stability operations across the whole of government.

In support of Hurricane Dorian, the team over the course of the seven-day operation, they received, processed, staged, and shipped over 300 trailers consisting of bottled water, meals, blankets, cots, tarps, plastic sheeting, generators and personal hygiene kits. Most noteworthy, DDXX ensured countless people displaced and impacted by this ravishing hurricane received much needed assistance and showcased DLA’s ability to strengthen strategic partnerships.

DDJC is the DoD’s sole provider of Unitized Group Rations. They received, stored, built, and shipped all under one roof and never missed a beat when it came to meeting their customers’ demanding requirements. This award-winning team flawlessly built over 240,000 modules and met Troop Support’s requirements for an unprecedented 61 consecutive months and counting.

The Wildland Fire Mission team marked another year of extraordinary service, by providing exemplary warehousing operations and customer service support. This dedicated team of professionals were responsible for the receipt, storage, and shipment of wildland fire equipment in support of the western United States’ government-wide wildland firefighting operation. They expeditiously processed over one thousand expedite orders and 27 thousand routine shipments in support of the time-sensitive, critical and life-saving mission. The team was also extremely responsive with average order to ship time for high-priority orders coming in at 0.81 days and routine orders at 1.23 days, keeping firefighters 100% equipped during one of the worst wildfire seasons on record.

Energy and Environment – The installation implemented innovative and aggressive energy conservation measures throughout the year. One notable project was replacing T5 HO fluorescent light fixtures with LED light fixtures in seven buildings and replacement of old air conditioning units with new energy efficient units in four buildings. As a result, electricity consumption decreased by 1.5% and natural gas consumption decreased by 1.25% as compared to the previous year. Further, to conserve water, new landscaping was put in place around the administrative areas and the softball field was replaced with artificial turf.

The installation is categorized as an Extreme Critical Non-Attainment or, in other words, one of the worst air quality areas. To help reduce emissions and improve the air quality, over 600 employees participated in the Employer Trip Reduction Incentive Program, reducing the greenhouse gas emissions by over 242 metric tons in this past year. In addition, the environmental staff characterized, profiled and manifested out 267.3 tons of hazardous waste generated by San Joaquin’s on-site mission and operational activities inclusive to facility, vehicle and medical maintenance activities and mission hazardous material inventory management.

Quality of Life – The installation keeps the workforce in the forefront. The Post Restaurant Fund completed a full renovation of both post restaurants. These state-of-the-art projects allowed the restaurants to offer an entirely new menu with healthy incentive options, complete with calorie count information. The newly renovated kitchens also offered different food stations, such as a salad bar, grab-n-go food choices, a panini station and pizza-by-the-slice station.

The installation’s top-notch Child Development Center achieved a perfect score of 100% on their reaccreditation visit from the National Association for the Education of Young Children. The NAEYC accreditation served as proof that our CDC met the standards of excellence for the installation’s young children.

Unit Morale – The center’s award-winning Civilian Welfare Fund Council is an essential part of DLA Distribution San Joaquin’s servant leadership team as they worked tirelessly to serve the employees across the installation. The team volunteered countless hours hosting various events and fundraisers aimed at promoting unit cohesiveness. Events included golf and bowling tournaments, quarterly Feel Good Friday givebacks, annual Safety Carnival, holiday social and the annual Employee Appreciation Day.

AFGE Local 1546 organized and hosted the second annual Veterans Outreach Awareness Day. The event brought veteran service providers to the installation and helped raise awareness of veteran advocacy and support programs.

Safety and Health – The safety and health of the workforce is the top priority. The installation is an Occupational Safety and Health Administration Voluntary Protection Program Star site. The center is fully engaged in continuous improvement processes and implemented an effective safety management system. A three-year review demonstrated an ever-strengthening culture of safety. DDJC’s lost time totals dropped from 661 days lost in 2017, to 265 in 2019 – a 60% decrease.

Team San Joaquin continues to raise the bar with employee involvement in the safety program. The installation’s AFGE union partners provided the services of four full-time union stewards to assist and manage the VPP Office, adding eight thousand additional staffing hours to the program. Their responsibilities included management of the six VPP chartered sub-committees, the Safety Buck Store, and providing safety outreach to bargaining unit employees.

Communication – The key to organizational excellence is great communication. During 2019 an initiative to install digital signage throughout San Joaquin installation came to fruition. Four years in the making, exemplary coordination between Distribution, Information Operations and Installation Management enabled the project to move forward successfully. To date, 50 monitors are in place throughout the warehouses, break rooms, and building common areas of the installation. An additional 50 monitors were installed in DDJC’s newly redesigned Consolidation and Containerization Point and the Freight Terminal. These additional monitors were placed at loading doors and strategic workstations and used specifically for workload management to maintain and improve metrics.

Information such as safety topics, CWF morale and team building events, employee assistance program, special events, and audit readiness are populated onto the monitors to keep the employees informed.

Security - The installation’s Security and Emergency Services Division is top-notch. The Pass and Identification Office provided customer service to the entire San Joaquin Valley, a geographical area including six counties covering thousands of square miles. They processed over 3,000 visitor and contractor requests through the creation of 1,700 cards and 1,200 paper passes exemplifying a can-do attitude within the ever-changing mission. With limited manpower, they were able to provide over 1,400 common access cards to the internal workforce and were also able to support the outlying community in addition to neighboring Army and Air Force Military Installations with over 1,300 military dependent identification cards. 

For their efforts, the team was awarded the third place Defense Manpower Data Center Site of the Year Award. Most noteworthy, they beat out 700 locations worldwide for their outstanding performance and overcoming adversity.

Lastly, the installation’s fire department provided support for multiple mutual aid requests to include; multiple requests for the agency’s Critical Incident Stress Management Team, assistance with a 3-alarm fires along with three neighboring cities, and a San Joaquin County joint hazmat team response for an unknown 50-gallon drum dumped in a farmer’s field.

Public Relations – Interaction with the local community is constant and the installation aggressively promotes positive public relations through tours and community events. Employees of the installation took tremendous pride in helping their local communities. Last year, the workforce donated 148 frozen turkeys totaling 2,220 pounds and 300 pounds of non-perishable food items for the less fortunate. 

Additionally, the installation’s active duty military members performed community outreach, further strengthening the bond between the installation’s military personnel and mission with the local community. They participated in Wreaths Across America, Toys for Tots and the Tracy Memorial Day events.

The San Joaquin team also joined forces with Operation Care and Comfort, a veteran based non- profit organization, donating care package items for deployed service members and partnered with local food banks in San Joaquin County, proving canned goods to help stock their food pantry.

Lastly, over 30 official tours explained the mission process of DDJC to visitors to the distribution center. In addition to military customers, the guests included local distribution businesses, civic and fraternal community leaders and various elected officials.

“This award is a testament to the teamwork between Distribution, Installation Management, our AFGE leadership and all the tenants. We are humbled and thrilled to receive this recognition,” concluded Harris.

Each winning installation will receive a commemorative Commander in Chief's Award trophy, flag, and a congratulatory letter from the president of the United States.