After more than a year of virtual collaboration, Defense Logistics Agency Troop Support Clothing and Textiles and U.S. Space Force Office of the Chief of Space Operations personnel met in person during a visit to DLA Troop Support’s headquarters in Philadelphia Mar. 8.
Discussions focused on new Space Force uniforms, including various types and components, fabric and end-item contract award timelines and DLA sustainment. Clothing and Textiles and the Space Force uniform development team meet bi-weekly.
Space Force Change Management Team Director Col. James Jenkins and management analyst Cathy Lovelady make up the service’s uniform development team, in collaboration with Tracy Roan, chief of the Air Force Uniform Office. Jenkins and Lovelady attended the meeting in-person, while Roan and others attended virtually.
Space Force is currently developing service dress and physical fitness uniforms, Jenkins said.
“Vision-wise, the service uniform is the number one priority,” Jenkins said. “We’ve prioritized our focus on the service uniform as it’s very important to us culturally, to get out front and talk to Guardians.”
The Space Force conducted roadshows in fall 2021 to garner feedback from Guardians on two service dress uniform prototypes. The team is currently incorporating this feedback, he said.
“The focus is on: how do we deliver the service uniform? What is the timeline to do that? Where are the risks? Where are there opportunities? And because we are a new service, we need to make sure we’re capturing the costs,” Jenkins said.
Clothing and Textiles Director of Supplier Operations Steve Merch recommended the Space Force team look for commonalities among other existing military service uniforms to garner interest from industry partners.
“Part of the challenges from an industry standpoint is, if you’re using different materials and totally different designs on a lot of items there could be struggles there; particularly Space Force compared to other services,” Merch said.
The Space Force team also visited the DLA Troop Support Flag Room to meet the embroiderers that helped produce the first Space Force flag.
Lovelady presented former Flag Room Supervisor Linda Farrell with a personalized memento including a smaller version of the Space Force flag and coin from Space Force Chief of Space Operations Gen. John W. “Jay” Raymond.
“You are Space Force’s Betsy Ross,” Lovelady said.
The Flag Room staff also helped press and prepare a flag that previously flew in space aboard the International Space Station in December2020 with Space Force Col. Michael A. Hopkins, NASA astronaut, to be permanently displayed at the Pentagon.
The Space Force expects to fit test samples of the service dress uniform sometime later this year, dependent upon manufacturing and supply timelines.