SIGONELLA, Sicily (NNS) -- Within the last few years, Naval Supply Systems Command Fleet Logistics Center (NAVSUP FLC) Sigonella experienced a dramatic increase in logistics support operations within the European and Africa Command theaters of operation.
To prepare and respond to future growing needs of fleet and shore-based forces, more than three dozen of the command's military and civilian leaders gathered for its annual leadership conference, Jan 29-31, at Naval Air Station Sigonella, Sicily, Italy, during which time they exchanged ideas and developed solutions to better achieve the command's strategic goals during fiscal year 2019.
"You are all here as leaders to challenge existing assumptions that may be inhibiting our progress, make decisions that improve our processes and, ultimately, make a difference in how we provide logistics support to our areas of operation," said NAVSUP FLC Sigonella's Commander Capt. Dion English during opening remarks to the group.
Presentations during the conference focused on headquarters' and each of its five sites' capabilities and responsibilities. Discussion topics emerged organically among attendees in a spontaneous, open forum format to generate solutions to operational and workforce challenges.
"Candid dialogue about important issues was very important to the success of the conference because it fosters common understanding of the root causes of issues or challenges, and produces best courses of action to go forward," said Bong Cabling, FLC Sigonella's executive director. "For instance, the operational impact of the 12-month rotation of personnel in Souda Bay, Redzikowo, Deveselu and Djibouti prompted the team to highlight key issues to be addressed with external commands and significant issues to be discussed within the NAVSUP swimlane."
Two recurring themes during this year's conference were the importance of taking care of command's workforce, professionally and personally; and recognizing the contributions of Navy Reservists and local nationals to the NAVSUP FLC Sigonella mission.
Mercedes Maestre, a procurement technician at Site Rota and one of several local national (LN) team members in attendance, delivered a presentation at the conference on behalf of her LN colleagues.
"The purpose of my remarks was to present issues to leadership that are important to my colleagues and to propose ideas for solutions, like opportunities for professional development," Maestre said.
NAVSUP FLC Sigonella's Navy Reserve Commander Capt. Charles Kirol was another attendee at the conference.
"By gaining an understanding of FLC Sigonella's goals and manning challenges, we Reservists can rally around our active-duty counterparts with support to drive maximum value for the command," Kirol said.
From the dialogue at the conference, leaders devised action items that will be distributed in the coming weeks for completion.
"Our ability to achieve our objectives this year depends not just upon exchanging ideas and brainstorming solutions, but following through on action items we recorded during our discussions," Cabling said. "Following up enables us to align our approach and answer leadership's mandate of being able to fight and win."
FLC Sigonella is one of NAVSUP's eight globally-positioned logistics centers that provides for the full range of the fleet's military operations. NAVSUP FLC Sigonella delivers solutions for logistics, business and support services to the Navy, Military Sealift Command, joint and allied forces throughout Navy Region Europe, Africa and Southwest Asia.
For more news from Naval Supply Systems Command, visit www.navy.mil/local/navsup/.