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News | Nov. 4, 2022

Industry Day brings contracting partners from around the world to Battle Creek, Michigan

By Jason Shamberger DLA Disposition Services

Defense Logistics Agency Disposition Services Contracting hosted the first ever Industry Day within the Hart-Dole-Inouye Federal Center in Battle Creek, Michigan, offering an opportunity for industry partners to learn about the Disposition Services mission.

“We pride ourselves on giving items back to the military but when that fails, we have to provide ultimate disposal,” said Director Mike Cannon while addressing those in attendance. “What we are looking for today is - I want you all to learn what our requirements are to support the warfighter and learn how you can you support us.”

Attendees of the two-day event were able to hear representatives speak on multiple topics as subject matter experts addressed not only the current strengths within the agency but also the opportunities for innovation and improvement.

“The biggest benefit is that they put up the things they are struggling to get rid of,” said Julie-Cristie Neal, CEO of U.S. Exporters – a purchasing, shipping and licensing firm based out of Tennessee. “Seeing that challenges me to come up with answers for that – which is something that I can do. Listing those things really gives me a way to think outside of the box for innovative solutions.”

While some attendees such as Neal are learning how they can work with the agency for the first time, others are looking to continue and expand their positive working relationship with Disposition Services.

“I have been working for two years with DLA and it just seems to get better over time,” said Joe DeVillez the Director of GovPlanet Operations. “We have worked closely with several people from Disposition Services, but this was the first time we have gotten a chance to meet each other which was wonderful. It’s been a great learning experience and a great chance to meet everyone.”

Partners such as DeVillez and his team traveled from Ohio, parts of Michigan and Georgia while others in attendance made the journey from as far away as Germany. Contracting Director Tracy Hart, explains the importance of having partners from all regions of the world participate in this interactive forum.

“We’re looking for two-way feedback,” said Hart. “It’s important to have outreach with industry to strengthen the collaboration between government and industry. We’re looking at them to help bring innovation and new ideas to the table and how they can help us with our challenges and what we can do to write better contracts.”

Hart went on the express her pleasure with the event as participation included a wide range of regions and industry sectors present.

“We’re very pleased with the turnout,” said Hart. “We have a good mix of experienced and inexperienced contractors, large and small, hitting several states and countries. And we have representatives from different industry sectors whether it be hazardous waste disposal service contracts, operational or public sales contracts.”

Note: Industry Day attendance and participation does not imply or constitute DOD or DLA endorsement. The Defense Department or DLA do not approve, endorse, or authorize external companies, products, or services.