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Taking care of business

Brig. Gen. Alice Trevino, Air Force Installation Contracting Agency Commander, awarded the 39th Contracting Squadron with the Outstanding Small Contracting Unit Award in Orlando Fla., April 2, 2019. During the award period, the 39th CONS managed a portfolio valued at $950 million and supported more than 1,000 contractors for Incirlik Air Base and its geographically separated units. (Courtesy Photo)

Maj. Gen. Cameron Holt, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Contracting, Office of the Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics, awarded the 39th Contracting Squadron with the Outstanding Small Contracting Unit Award in Orlando Fla., April 2, 2019. During the award period, the 39th CONS managed a portfolio valued at $950 million and supported more than 1,000 contractors for Incirlik Air Base and its geographically separated units. (Courtesy Photo)

INCIRLIK AIR BASE, Turkey --

More equipment. More supplies. More services. You got it, they bought it.

The 39th Contracting Squadron uses knowledge of the federal acquisition regulations to bolster the Air Force’s capability to support the base, the mission and its mission partners.

“We’re mission focused business leaders,” said Maj. Joe Misch, 39th CONS commander.  “We’re negotiating contracts and taking the initiative to ensure our mission partners are getting the things they need expeditiously. It is also our job to get a good business deal for the U.S. tax payer.”

With a mere 40 people, the unit managed a portfolio valued at $950 million and supported more than 1,000 contractors for Incirlik and its geographically separated units.

“We have a small squadron with big results,” said Misch. “We’ve managed to execute U.S. Air Forces Europe-U.S. Air Forces Africa’s largest service contract, which provides uninterrupted support to Incirlik’s missions like Operation Inherent Resolve. This includes all of the facility maintenance across the base, dining, services and vehicle operations.”

During the 2018 fiscal year, the squadron was able to rapidly and effectively complete requirements and proactively track and identify each unit’s needs in advance to secure an additional $16 million for quality of life projects. Despite them having a team with only 6.5 years of experience, their efforts led to the unit being named the Air Force’s Outstanding Operational Small Contracting Unit.

“We’re not sitting back waiting for a problem to drop on our desk,” said Misch. “We’re leaning forward and identifying issues in advance so we can make sure the mission continues. We strive to be fire marshals not fire fighters because fire marshals prevent fire from ever starting.”

In addition to managing the large work load and quickly obligating money for the units, the squadron also sought ways to improve by contributing to a larger Air Force goal: saving money.

“We’re executing and getting money for the base, but we’re also saving money in the process,” said Tech. Sgt. Xavier Robertson, 39th CONS contracting officer. “We’re moving efficiently and taking care of business.

“The Air Force has a billion dollar cost savings goal which has really been a focus for our career field and we added to that goal,” added Robertson. “For example, by combining Wi-Fi services under one contract throughout the installation, we saved $2.5 million.”

Securing contracts, saving money, and winning awards; that’s just how 39th CONS is taking care of business.