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News | Aug. 19, 2021

Winds of change blow in Oklahoma City

By Leon Moore DLA Aviation Public Affairs Office

Defense Logistics Agency Aviation at Oklahoma City has a new leader. Air Force Col. James Malec relinquished command to Air Force Col. Jason Kalin during a change of command ceremony held at the Tinker Event Center on Tinker Air Force Base, Oklahoma, Aug. 13.

DLA Aviation Commander Air Force Brig. Gen. David Sanford presided over the ceremony. He began his remarks by thanking family, friends and distinguished guests for attending. He then turned his attention to praising the outstanding job the DLA Aviation at Oklahoma City team did during Malec’s four-year tour.

“Colonel Malec has performed exemplary, facing many challenges, but has molded a strong team that provides consistent, outstanding support to our joint force partners.” Sanford said.” However, he will be the first to tell you any successes are a direct reflection of the hard work and dedication of the Aviation team at Tinker.”

He then highlighted a few team accomplishments:

  • Increased shop service center on time delivery from 92.3% to 94.3%.
  • Reduced order response time failures by 1.7%.
  • Led the team through the difficult task of implementing the Generation 3 industrial prime vendor contract.

“James, thank you for all that you’ve done for the DLA enterprise and for our warfighters around the world. You are an exceptional frontline leader,” Sanford said.

Sanford then welcomed Kalin to the team, challenging him to build upon Malec’s successes and to make DLA Aviation at Oklahoma City an even better place than he found it.

“I am confident that you are the right person to lead this outstanding DLA team to accomplish the challenges ahead and to take advantage of upcoming opportunities to serve our customers here at Tinker and around the globe,” he said.

After Sanford gave his remarks, Malec stepped to the podium, thanking his team and reflecting on his time in command, focusing on the challenges associated with providing support to the warfighter through the COVID-19 pandemic.

“This last year and a half have been challenging, but we got through it. We continued to get the job done, 30,000 transactions a month, $900 million a year in consumable sales. It’s been truly exceptional. It’s been the best assignment I ever had. You made life much easier for me,” Malec said.

The time-honored tradition of relinquishing command portion of the ceremony followed Malec’s speech. It’s symbolized by the passing of the organization’s colors from the outgoing commander to the senior commander. The colors are then passed from the senior commander to the incoming commander, signifying the passing of authority, responsibility, trust and mission from the senior commander to the incoming commander.

After receiving the organizational flag from Sanford, Kalin spoke, thanking family members, previous supervisors, co-workers, mentors and friends for their love and support over the years.

Kalin also delivered a message to his new organization.

“Thank you for the warm welcome. I’m blessed, humbled, proud and eager to serve as your commander. I am thrilled to lead this organization, serve by your side and look forward to advancing the organization’s relationships, while collaborating with its many, many partners in support of the warfighter. I promise you my best effort every single day,” he said.

Kalin didn’t have to travel far to assume command of DLA Aviation at Oklahoma City as his previous assignment was serving as deputy commander of the 76th Aircraft Maintenance Group on Tinker.