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News | Feb. 14, 2022

Deployer spotlight: Anthony Barlow

By DLA CENTCOM & SOCOM

Editor’s note: This is part of a series highlighting employees who volunteer to serve on Deployment Support Teams. DSTs are critical to DLA operations around the world and rely on volunteers who serve six-month deployments to support equipment and weapons system readiness. 

Blending industrial and tactical safety principles into operations is paramount to success in military operations, and a Defense Logistics Agency Support Team-Middle East safety and occupational health specialist is helping to do just that.

Three men in camo uniform orange safety vests and white hardhats stand outside while one points to the right.
Anthony Barlow, a Defense Logistics Agency occupational health and safety officer, Army Col. Wheeler Manning, DLA CENTCOM & SOCOM deputy commander (forward), and Air Force Senior Master Sergeant Nahkoma Doyle, DLA Disposition Services senior enlisted advisor, tour the DLA Disposition Services yard at Al Udeid Air Base, Qatar, Nov. 23, 2021. Courtesy photo
Three men in camo uniform orange safety vests and white hardhats stand outside while one points to the right.
220209-D-D0441-002
Anthony Barlow, a Defense Logistics Agency occupational health and safety officer, Army Col. Wheeler Manning, DLA CENTCOM & SOCOM deputy commander (forward), and Air Force Senior Master Sergeant Nahkoma Doyle, DLA Disposition Services senior enlisted advisor, tour the DLA Disposition Services yard at Al Udeid Air Base, Qatar, Nov. 23, 2021. Courtesy photo
Photo By: Courtesy
VIRIN: 220209-D-D0441-002

Anthony Barlow volunteered in early 2021 to deploy for six months to Camp Arifjan, Kuwait, from DLA Distribution Warner Robins, Georgia, where he’s an expert in industrial, fire and radiation safety. As part of DLA CENTCOM & SOCOM’s forward presence at Camp Arifjan, Kuwait, he also supports operations in Qatar and Bahrain. 

Deployed safety officers often work in the background supporting a fast-paced environment in which operational missions are executed and future strategic missions are refined. Barlow plays his part by educating employees on workplace hazards and advising on the best ways to mitigate risks. DST-ME Commander Army Lt. Col. Daniel Howser said Barlow influences the organization’s climate and culture by fostering an all-inclusive, transparent safety program.

During Barlow’s deployment, DLA has supported military intervention against terrorist organizations, the conclusion of Operation Freedom’s Sentinel, and the evacuation of Afghanis during Operation Allies Refuge – all while supporting the global COVID-19 effort.

Man in a camo uniform stands against an outdoor wall with an emblem of a bulldog painted behind him.
Anthony Barlow, a Defense Logistics Agency occupational health and safety officer, stands in front of DLA Disposition Services’ “Deploy the Dog” memorial at Al Udeid Air Base, Qatar, Nov. 23, 2021. Courtesy photo
Man in a camo uniform stands against an outdoor wall with an emblem of a bulldog painted behind him.
220209-D-D0441-003
Anthony Barlow, a Defense Logistics Agency occupational health and safety officer, stands in front of DLA Disposition Services’ “Deploy the Dog” memorial at Al Udeid Air Base, Qatar, Nov. 23, 2021. Courtesy photo
Photo By: Courtesy
VIRIN: 220209-D-D0441-003

“My deployment has allowed me to go far beyond my comfort zone,” he said. “Every country and every operation presents a unique challenge and requires a slightly different approach.  There are no one-size-fits-all safety solutions in a tactical environment.”Barlow found his deployment experience so valuable he extended for three months, and he credits his success to his Warner Robins background“At DDWG, one of our core strategic missions is to ensure our warfighters have the necessary parts to maintain certain aircraft, and the mission impact is visible while deployed,” said the 17-year-federal employee. He’s spent four years at DLA.   

Deployments help employees learn more about DLA capabilities and understand the roles of DLA Headquarters and major subordinate commands. 

“I had an idea of what the other major subordinate commands’ missions were, but I had little operational impact,” he said. “The ability to work with all MSCs and to see how operations from my coworkers from DDWG affect the front line is what makes deploying such a rewarding experience.”

Barlow will finish his deployment in March and take his joint tactical and operational experience back to DDWG. 

“Employees are the true process experts, and when something is amiss, they will see it first,” he said. “That level of involvement creates process ownership and improves the safety culture, which in turn will contribute to the goal of eliminating preventable mishaps.”