The Defense Logistics Agency was presented its second Joint Meritorious Unit Award since 2011 during a ceremony hosted by Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics Frank Kendall at the McNamara Headquarters Complex May 20.
The award recognizes DLA’s “exceptional logistics support” to warfighters, federal agencies and foreign military partners, and for contributing to humanitarian assistance and disaster recovery from Nov. 1, 2011, to Dec. 31, 2012.
“Congratulations on the award. It’s well-deserved and well-earned,” Kendall said. He praised employees for supporting warfighters around the world and for providing lifesaving assistance to victims of Hurricane Sandy in October 2012.
The agency “made a significant impact in the lives of those affected by Hurricane Sandy through their invaluable service support by the delivery of meals, generators, water pumps, blankets, medical supplies and fuel,” the citation reads.
DLA Director Navy Vice Adm. Mark Harnitchek said employees immediately sought missions in the days following the hurricane and didn’t wait for instructions or permission to get critical supplies where they were needed.
“As you guys know, it’s all about speed because we’re helping our fellow citizens, minimizing property damage and in some cases saving lives. We’re a big dog when it comes to logistics, so I turned you guys loose and all sorts of fabulous things happened,” he said.
Logistics support in the aftermath of the hurricane included more than 6 million meals, 72,000 liters of bottled water, removal of 75 million pounds of trash and debris, and 9 million gallons of fuel.
The award also recognizes DLA for keeping warfighters in Afghanistan supplied with repair parts, medical equipment, food and fuel despite the closure of supply routes through Pakistan in November 2011.
Employees who were assigned to the agency for at least 30 days during the award period are eligible to receive and wear the award, which consists of service ribbons for military members, lapel pins for civilians and a unit streamer for the DLA flag. Ribbons and lapel pins will be awarded soon, according to an email DLA Human Resources Director Brad Bunn sent to senior leaders May 6.
The agency also received the Joint Meritorious Unit Award in 2011 for support toward “joint and combined warfighting, operational exercises, humanitarian operations and disaster recovery” from Nov. 1, 2009 to April 30, 2011.
Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics Frank Kendall and DLA Director Navy Vice Adm. Mark Harnitchek attach a Joint Meritorious Unit Award streamer to the DLA flag. Photo by Teodora Mocanu