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News | July 8, 2022

DLA Energy Americas welcomes a returning commander

By Irene Smith DLA Energy Public Affairs

Defense Logistics Agency Energy Americas changed leadership and bid farewell to Army Col. Raphael Heflin in a change of command ceremony at the Petroleum Club of Houston, Texas, June 30.

DLA Energy Commander Air Force Brig. Gen. Jimmy Canlas presided over the ceremony and welcomed the new commander, Army Col. Josiel Carrasquillo. Carrasquillo previously served as the DLA Energy Americas East commander from 2017 to 2019.

During his two-year command, Heflin and the Americas team supported crisis fuel support to the Federal Emergency Management Agency and Department of Defense lifesaving rescue and recovery operations in response to the historic Texas Winter Storm and Hurricanes Henri and Ida. This support included crisis planning, coordination, accountability, and execution of FEMA priority fuel missions.

While in command, Heflin encountered the unprecedented challenge of a cyberattack resulting in the complete operational shutdown of the Colonial Pipeline, one of the nation’s busiest pipelines supplying more than 45% of the fuel for the East coast. In response to the shutdown, Heflin and the Americas team came up with creative solutions to maintain DoD strategic fuel supply chains and ensure all customers’ requirements were met despite the ongoing tank truck carrier shortages. Thanks to Heflin and his team’s herculean effort during the 9-day shutdown, all customer and Warfighter mission requirements were met.

Heflin received the Defense Superior Service Medal for his achievements.

Recognizing the faithful dedication of the people who worked for him, Heflin addressed the efforts of the Americas workforce in his remarks. 

“You solved the problems that had not happened before ranging from the Colonial Pipeline shutdown, Fuel System Icing Inhibitor shortage, historic wildfires, to the Texas Winter Storm,” Heflin said. “You were the superheroes that always ran to the call and saved the day.”  

Heflin welcomed Carrasquillo and her family back to the DLA Energy Americas team.

“I know this opportunity to serve the Americas family will be a ride you will cherish and will take Americas to new plateaus,” Heflin said. “You bring great experience and perspective, and Americas is fortunate to have you return now as its commander.” 

For the first time in DLA Energy history, a previous regional commander returned to assume command of the DLA Energy Americas. Carrasquillo served as the commander of DLA Energy Americas East, a regional office of DLA Energy Americas. Born in Puerto Rico, she attended the University of Puerto Rico Rio Piedras Campus where she earned a degree in business administration with minor in accounting. In 2000, she received her commission as Quartermaster officer through the Reserve Officer Training Corps, Rio Piedras, Puerto Rico.

“Estoy en Casa,” Carrasquillo said. I am home. “I’m so blessed for this amazing opportunity that the Army has given me. It is a dream come true.”

“Team Carrasquillo is at 110% of commitment. I look forward to working with each of you to build readiness, innovation, and transformation,” Carrasquillo said. “One team, one fight, one family, that is the way we do it. Warfighter ALWAYS! Hooah!”

DLA Energy Americas is in Houston, Texas, with an area of responsibility that includes North, Central and South Americas, plus the Caribbean Island states and territories. It is the largest command within DLA Energy and is responsible for 50% DLA Energy’s worldwide bulk petroleum inventory storage and 50% of DLA’s Energy’s total petroleum annual sales.