DLA is celebrating 60 years of logistics support since it was created Oct. 1, 1961. The theme is “Forged by History, Focused on the Future.”
In this story, we celebrate and honor DLA Energy employee Kelly Dowd who has been with the agency for 26 out of her 33 years of federal service.
For more stories, videos, and graphics highlighting the agency’s history and people, go to the DLA 60th Anniversary page.
What’s your job title?
I am a procurement analyst in DLA Energy’s Procurement Process Support Directorate.
How long have you worked at DLA Energy?
I’ve spent approximately 26 of my 33 years as an acquisition professional at DLA Energy. After graduating from college in May 1988, I joined the “fuels family” at age 22 and began my career in DoD acquisition. I was hired under the DLA Corporate Intern Program, now known as the DLA Pathways to Career Excellence Program, at Defense Fuels Supply Center, Cameron Station, Virginia. Joining DFSC was a natural fit for me because I literally grew up on an oil field. My father, Navy Capt. George Dowd, served as commander of the Naval Petroleum and Oil Shale Reserves, Elk Hills, California, in 1975. The house we lived in was federal property on an oil field in the Elk Hills of the San Joaquin Valley, in Bakersfield, California. So, petroleum is “in my bloodline.”
After graduating from the internship program in 1992, I was hired into the Overseas Bulk Fuels Division. During this time, Cameron Station officially closed under the Base Realignment of Closure initiative and the Defense Fuel Support Center moved to Fort Belvoir. Working in the Overseas Bulk Fuels Division, I was lead buyer for the Western Pacific and Indian Ocean program and performed emergency fuel buys for Somalia in 1993 in support of requirements during the Battle of Mogadishu. After jobs at the Defense National Stockpile Center and the Defense Threat Reduction Agency, I returned to the DLA Energy, where I worked as a Contracting Officer and was promoted to Division Chief of the Utilities Privatization and Energy Savings Performance Contracting programs. In 2007, wanting to gain major weapons experience, I went to work as a Contracting Officer at Naval Sea Systems Command. In 2014, I returned to DLA Energy and served as a procurement analyst and the co-editor of the acquisition newsletter.
What’s your best memory of working here?
The friendships, there are so many! Between the annual Chili cook-off fundraisers, talent shows and summer picnics, it’s not just a team of coworkers but also friends.
What makes DLA Energy a great place to work?
The leadership focuses on the concerns of the workforce. There is a spirit of camaraderie, where everyone is focused on helping each other to succeed.
How have things in the agency changed in your 33+ years of experience?
We’ve gone through an information technology evolution and our physical location changed from Cameron Station where we had World War II era, windowless, warehouse style buildings to the McNamara Headquarters Complex on Fort Belvoir. We’ve evolved with the times and grew to meet the evolving needs of our customers to include natural gas, electricity, utilities privatization for water, wastewater, and electricity. We established Aerospace Energy to support NASA missions and partner with FEMA to provide energy support during natural disasters. I’m sure we will continue to find innovative ways to embrace change together as we make forward progress.