SAN DIEGO, Calif. –
In a virtual ceremony signifying a change of leadership at Defense Logistics Agency Distribution San Diego, California, Navy Capt. Jerome White passed the helm to Navy Capt. Kerri Yarbrough June 5. DLA Distribution Commanding Officer, Navy Rear Adm. Kevin Jones, presided over the ceremony via video teleconference link from DLA Distribution Headquarters in New Cumberland, Pennsylvania.
Because of ongoing risks associated with the global pandemic COVID-19, virtual ceremonies have replaced standard traditional ceremonies while social distancing measures and travel restrictions are in place for military service members and government civilians.
In Navy dress whites and wearing white masks and white ceremonial gloves, Jones virtually passed the DLA organization flag to incoming commander Yarbrough, signifying the official change in command.
Throughout a period of constant change and evolving challenges, White exhibited unmatched execution of his mission and meticulous management of DDDC’s business operations. As a result, DDDC delivered the full range of storage and distribution capabilities to warfighters in the most demanding global environment, shaped the Defense Department’s strategic environment, and supported the priorities of the Secretary of Defense, the Director of DLA and Commanding Officer of DLA Distribution.
During his tenure, White expertly managed a globally responsive organization in a manner that ensured DDDC met or exceeded negotiated performance metrics on behalf of warfighter requirements. He expertly addressed current and future resource requirements, implemented cost-effective approaches to mission accomplishment and provided strategic oversight of a complex business operation that yielded unprecedented results.
White’s extraordinary performance as a distribution center commander enabled outstanding support that bolstered the readiness of the armed services, regional combatant commands and allied nations.
“Since coming to DLA Distribution, J.R. has been an extraordinarily gifted leader and visionary change agent,” said Jones, speaking from Distribution headquarters. “His performance as commander of one of DLA Distribution's most complex and regionally diverse distribution centers was unparalleled.”
Throughout a period of constant change and evolving challenges, White exhibited unmatched execution of his mission and meticulous management of his command’s business operations. The scope of his management responsibilities involved 270 military, civilian and contractor personnel, an annual operating budget of $22 million, an 88 acre industrial complex spanning four sites, including real property, capital equipment and non-capital equipment valued at more than $330 million and a $6 billion inventory consisting of over 94,000 line items.
His team orchestrated the receipt, issue and shipment of over 800,000 items annually with a distribution of 46% to local customers and 54% shipped worldwide, while assuring auditability as well as financial and process excellence while storing, caring for and inventorying over 94,000 unique line items.
White employed a hands-on leadership approach in support of audit readiness and drove his team to achieving 100% accuracy during three continuous annual full financial statement audits. Ultimately, the manner in which he executed his mission underscored the successful mission execution of over 180 local afloat and ashore customers.
In support of military and interagency operations from October to November 2018, he led a team that supported the delivery of 2,360 rolls of concertina wire, 160 spools of barbed wire, 6,560 metal posts and 2,000 boxes of Meals, Ready to Eat in support of the border security mission.
White guided his team’s distribution logistics support at Port Hueneme, the continental logistics hub for the United States Antarctic program.
His team brought to bear DLA’s first public-private partnership where an industry partner utilized DLA Distribution as a third-party logistics provider to store up to $10 million in materiel inventory for Marine Corps helicopters.
“Under White’s leadership, his team delivered results in support of all functions, missions and business operations. He leaves DLA Distribution San Diego, California with a legacy of innovation, positive change, continuous improvement, quality results and a culture of excellence,” Jones said.
For his achievements as DDDC commander, White was awarded the Defense Superior Service Medal.
Incoming Commander Yarbrough, a native of Herndon, Virginia, graduated from the United States Naval Academy in 1997 with a Bachelor of Science in Oceanography and a Master of Business Administration from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, in 2007.
Her sea tours include: supply officer, USS George Washington and USS Ronald Reagan; assistant supply officer and principal assistant for services, USS Dwight D. Eisenhower; supply officer, USS Shoup; material division officer and HAZMAT officer, USS Boxer; and sales and food service officer, USS McKee. During those assignments she completed an unprecedented three carrier hull swap between USS Ronald Reagan, USS George Washington and USS Theodore Roosevelt; and decommissioned USS McKee.
Yarbrough supported two deployments with Commander 7th Fleet and Commander 4th Fleet; supported Humanitarian Assistance/Disaster Relief – Indonesia; Exercises Rim of the Pacific and UNITAS as well as numerous other exercises and operations.
Her previous ashore assignments include: deputy commander Aviation, NAVSUP Weapon Systems Support Philadelphia; director, Integrated Weapons Support Teams, NAVSUP WSS Philadelphia; director H-60 Integrated Weapons Support Team, NAVSUP WSS Philadelphia; staff logistics officer, Maritime Command Northwood, United Kingdom; University of Wisconsin-Madison and manpower requirements officer, Naval Personnel Command, Millington, Tennessee.
A member of the Naval Acquisition Community, she is Life Cycle Logistics Level III and qualified as a Naval Aviation Supply Officer and Surface Warfare Supply Officer.
Yarbrough’s personal decorations include the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Meritorious Service Medal (two awards), Navy and Marine Commendation Medal (two awards) and Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal (three awards).