By Navy Reserve Ensign Ashley Schoonmaker
DCMA Eastern Region Command
Active duty and reserve members attached to the Defense Contract Management Agency participated in a two-day war-gaming exercise to support the initial mobilization of an Operational Contracting Support Integration Cell, also known as an OCSIC, Aug. 6-7.
Twenty-eight military personnel from across the agency, and employees from the DCMA Combat Support Center, participated in the virtual session to explore the complexities of setting up an OCSIC in theater using a fictional scenario to support the de-escalation of a foreign government takeover of an allied government.
The exercise explored elements of setting up and using contract support during a scenario simulating the takeover of a partner nation by terrorist organizations. Team members identified the support requirements for establishing a force, identified the sources of supply for those requirements, and developed a concept of contracting support needed to support the first 90 days of the deployment of a joint task force by U.S. Africa Command. Additional topics covered during the exercise included reviewing material related to the Joint Requirements Review Board; contracting officer representative duties and responsibilities; engineering roles and responsibilities; performance work statements; and quality assurance surveillance plans.
During the training, the team learned from Army Reserve Maj. Ed Fonseca, who recently returned from commanding U.S. Central Command OCSIC in Kuwait, and Navy Lt. Justin Wright, who was a COR in Naples, Italy. In addition, the group also heard from Navy Capt. Jason Klingenberg, commander of DCMA Boston, as well as Rodney Palmer and Kevin Landy from the DCMA Combat Support Center.
The participants said they gained valuable experience during the virtual exercise.
“This training, sharing of experience, and overall familiarization of the material is critical,” said Army Maj. Alfonso Aldaz, administrative contracting officer with the DCMA Eastern Region Command.
Navy Reserve Lt. Cmdr. Gustavo Macias from the DCMA Western Region Command said the guest speakers provided a way for the group to learn more in-depth from each other.
“It is one thing to read about it in a newsletter or from a Defense Acquisition University training module, but it is another thing when I hear it from people who have lived it,” said Macias. “The training session incorporated top-notch presenters and speakers. Everything they said during their presentations was of great value. The team breakout assignments enhanced our knowledge, and we took what we learned from the presenters and applied it to produce content with deliverables that would be expected of us to provide in a forward deployed environment.”
Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Adam Rising, DCMA senior enlisted advisor, said he was glad the group could come together to gain more OCSIC experience.
“Valuable exercises like these are the way to ensure that when put in an OCSIC environment, every sailor, soldier and airman has the knowledge and skills to thrive and win,” he said.
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