AFIMSC beats fiscal clock to boost installations disaster resiliency  

  • Published
  • By Mila Cisneros
  • AFIMSC Public Affairs

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-LACKLAND, Texas – The Air Force Installation and Mission Support Center successfully closed out a year-long effort to increase infrastructure resiliency at Air Force installations in the wake of winter storm Uri. 

AFIMSC received $330 million in disaster relief funding from the Department of the Air Force in April 2021 to address the challenges brought by the historic winter storm in February 2021. The storm impacted 28 installations across the U.S., disrupting missions and damaging infrastructure.  

Since then, the initiative, led by the Air Force Civil Engineer Center, funded over 78 wide-ranging infrastructure repair and modernization projects across 23 installations to restore lethality and readiness, and Airmen resilience.  

“Reliable and resilient infrastructure is critical to keeping the Air Force and Space Force missions going,” said Col. George Nichols, deputy director at AFCEC’s Facility Engineering Directorate. “It is of utmost importance for us to provide full-spectrum design and construction execution support to safeguard and strengthen our installations against natural vulnerabilities, ensuring our installations and those operating them remain safe and mission ready.” 

AFIMSC needed to utilize all the money by the end of the fiscal year 2022 to meet the Congressional intent and timeline requirements, said Roxanne Bragg, Program Budget Analyst in the Resource Management Directorate.  

To accomplish that, several AFIMSC offices unified their efforts in record fashion to execute on time.  

The initiative needed a proactive planning approach and collaborative engagement between AFIMSC’s Installation Support and Resource Management Directorates, AFIMSC detachments, the Air Force Installation Contracting Center, AFCEC and those installations impacted to determine projects that met funding requirements, distribute necessary funds to the installations, award those projects, track progress and ensure the effort stayed on time and target.  

“Hard work and teamwork were critical to keeping the effort moving through many levels of approvals as we worked tirelessly to identify the projects and ensure the full amount was obligated by the end of September 2022,” said Brenda Roesch, chief of facilities engineering at AFIMSC’s Installation Support Directorate. “However, the real credit in getting the project across the finish line belongs to the facility engineering directorate who took oversight of the entire effort across the Air Force, working jointly with installations and detachments to ensure success.” 

In addition, the AFCEC Strategic Design and Construction Division within in the directorate assisted in prioritizing projects during the approval process and executed four design and two construction projects, with a combined value of $44.5 million.  

It is a significant team accomplishment and a true AFIMSC team effort with each office showing great dedication to supporting our Air Force installations with capabilities they need to enhance warfighter readiness, said Dr. Tim Sullivan, chief of the Technical Services Division in the Facility Engineering Directorate.  

Working in unison, the AFIMSC team coordinated many moving pieces throughout the year and withstood many challenges, to include delays in acquisitions or high bids, to meet the September 2022, obligation deadline.  

“Thanks to the unity of effort partnership between all stakeholders, we exceeded the requirements and met the goal of fully executing the disaster relief funds,” Sullivan said.  

The portfolio of projects includes anything from the demolition of facilities to repairing HVAC, damaged pavements or airfield surfaces.  

Essentially, the original list of qualifying projects was identified by AFIMSC headquarters, with additional projects that increased installation resiliency and met the funding requirements coming from installations impacted by the winter storm, Sullivan said. 

Damage caused by bursting water pipes was the most common problem identified. 

Restoring infrastructure to full mission capability is the key component to increasing installation resiliency, Nichols said, and the funding used to replace, repair and modernize facilities will also enhance their resilience to future natural disaster events.  

Whether it is a repair or renovation project, this effort will rebuild all facilities to meet the latest criteria, incorporate current construction standards and implement innovative technology to make infrastructure more sustainable and cost-efficient.  

The disaster relief funding process demonstrated the importance and benefits of the AFIMSC enterprise working together, Sullivan said, with AFIMSC planning to use its recent success as a model to execute the facility sustainment, restoration and modernization program going forward.  

“We came together very quickly to support installations and will continue to work collaboratively to deliver built infrastructure to the Air Force enterprise,” Sullivan said.