Local 'loggie' lauded

3 Aug 2004 | Lance Cpl. Andrew D. Pomykal

Robert Mack Mills Sr., a Marine Corps Base senior general supply specialist, was recently named  "Civilian Logistician of the Year." The deputy commandant for installations and logistics recognized the 55-year-old for "superior performance" while managing a diverse civilian and military workforce in the supply division, business and logistics support department.

Mills, who began his civil service career as an office machine repairman in 1969, supervises more than 80 military and civilian employees and executes numerous programs for the division in support of operational forces.

At his suggestion, the base implemented a vendor-owned and managed furniture and equipment stock concept program that reduced the Marine Corps-owned

inventory, consequently saving precious dollars.

"Through this, the Marine Corps doesn't have any money tied up in inventory, resulting in direct savings," touted Mills. "It also reduces management oversight of the

budget process, essentially eliminating a level of bureaucracy."

Awards are given annually for the top logistics officer, enlisted, civilian and organization or team.

A statement released from the commandant's office declared; "all nominations for the 2003 Marine Corps awards for logistics excellence were truly outstanding, and all nominees are to be congratulated."

"Mills epitomizes the term 'civilian Marine,'" said Nancy C. Kalm. "Due to his loyalty and love of the Marine Corps, he has tirelessly worked to provided the

Marines at Camp Lejeune superior logistics support." Kalm is the deputy, assistant chief of staff, Business and Logistics Support Department.

A panel of logistician experts, both military and civilian, selected the award winners based on exceptional achievements.

"Because of his efforts, Marines have had better training, equipment and spaces to live and work," said Kalm. "Robert, like so many other civilians working at Camp Lejeune, takes great pride in working for the Marine Corps and making a contribution to our nation. Mr. Mills is truly deserving of this honor, and we are extremely proud of him."

The award is given for the most outstanding contribution in the Marine Corps logistics field, developing or advancing concepts, doctrine, technology or procedures that contribute towards the logistics transformation or demonstrating continual resourcefulness and responsiveness by meeting operational and or strategic challenges. Other contribution categories include, but are not limited to: improving logistics response time, ownership cost reduction, innovative logistics planning and execution that merits adoption for common use.

"The initiative that we're most proud of is the Combined Issue Facility," said Mills. Lejeune stood up the first one which served as a model for rest of the Corps.

Other logistical initiatives Mills is currently working include contracting with furniture manufacturer UNICOR, a function of the Federal Prison Industries, as a quick delivery source for furniture tailored specifically for Lejeune and this year's Whole Room Concept barracks furniture replacement program. Among other ventures, he is also involved in establishing a hazardous materials center and inventing ways to further streamline supply customer service and support.

"The ultimate initiative is to provide a 'one stop' shop for our fighting forces, whether in garrison or deployed," said Mills. "With that, force commanders can focus on the frontline fighting and not be concerned about supplies because ... logistics is gonna be there."

Mills was born and raised in Cedar Fork near Beulaville, N.C., but now considers Jacksonville home.