Black History Month spotlight: Tony D. Scales

By DLA Energy Public Affairs

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Editor’s note: February is Black History Month and this year’s Defense Equal Opportunity Management Institute theme is “Honoring the Past, Securing the Future.” Throughout the month, we will spotlight Defense Logistics Agency Energy employees who are honoring their history and making a difference through their accomplishments both in their workplace and community.

Describe your job: I’m an inventory management specialist at DLA Energy Hawaii. I manage the supply chain distribution of bulk petroleum products via Commercial Transportation Support Providers and make recommendations to improve distribution efficiency and effectiveness in support of the Warfighter. 

What makes you proud about your job? Collaborating with colleagues, Defense Fuel Support Points, and commercial vendors to maintain petroleum stock levels while enhancing capabilities, reducing costs and ensuring Warfighters can accomplish their mission, training and operational goals.  

What was the biggest influence on your career? The love, support and life lessons from my Mom were the biggest influences on my career. She always told me there are two things no one can ever take from you – your name and your word – the only way to lose those are to give them away. She taught me to always do the right thing because it is the right thing to do.  

Tell us about a recent professional success story. During a recent distribution study, I gathered data to analyze whether DLA Energy Transportation Service Providers are meeting customer resupply requirements. The findings revealed the need for an additional TSP to support routine demand and upcoming surge requirements. With the addition of the new carrier, delivery resupply requirements increased 40% and inventory control significantly improved. 

How do you make a difference? Most of the DLA Energy Hawaii office positions are only one person deep so it is dependent upon our team to backup one another. I continuously volunteer when and wherever needed. From April to August 2019 after a coworker received permanent change of station orders, I assumed all of the additional duties and responsibilities as the primary supply planner while also performing my primary duties. In this role, I led the coordination, procurement and delivery of 702,419 barrels of jet fuel. 

What would you consider your greatest accomplishment? Retiring from the U.S. Navy as a Logistics Specialist Chief Petty Officer after 24 years of honorable service and, as a civilian employee, completing DLA Energy Inventory Management Specialist Pathways to Career Excellence Program. Personally, my greatest accomplishment was becoming a Father to my son.

How do you honor your past? I teach my son our family and cultural history and honoring those who are no longer with us. Since he was three years old (now 23), I’ve taken him regularly to the rural areas of Arkansas, Mississippi, Missouri and Oklahoma to share with him the stories of where we came from. These are the birth places of my Mom, Dad, and grandparents.