Battalion strives for community of excellence: Possible $2M for more KMC services

Christine June
415th Base Support Battalion

***image1***The 415th Base Support Battalion is in the running for as much as $2 million, which will go back into their KMC programs and services.
The battalion is now competing against five other military communities within Europe at the 2004 Army Communities of Excellence Award for the Installation Management Activity-Europe competition level. They were the only one selected as a semi-finalist out of four BSBs in the 26th Area Support Group.
“I feel elated, absolutely elated,” said Lt. Col. David W. Hall, who relinquishes his two-year command of the 415th BSB 10 a.m. today at the Armstrong Community Club, Vogelweh Housing. “What this could mean is a whole bunch of money being pumped back into the community so the battalion can do additional projects and improve the quality of life even more. That’s why we want to win.”
Inspectors, contracted from the United States, will scrutinize the 415th BSB for the IMA-E competition Thursday and Friday.
“The inspectors are here to ensure that we are in fact meeting the criteria to become an Army community of excellence,” said Mary Pat Begin, 415th BSB Programs, Analysis and Integration Office analyst and who spearheaded the writing and preparation of the 415th BSB award submission. “The ACOE is based on the Army performance improvement criteria, which are specifically developed to drive us to continuously improve leadership, strategic planning, customer focus, information management, process management and the end business results.”
Ms. Begin said the Army Communities of Excellence Awards are presented annually to installations for exemplary efforts to provide support to their communities. The award recognizes continuous business process improvement, individual dedication to efficiency and customer care.
“The driving force being the fact that we are dedicated to support and give our customers the best,” she said. “This package recognizes how hard our folks work at constantly improving what they do every day.
“The 415th BSB continuously gives above and beyond what the standard of expectation is even when mission demands are up, and budget and manpower dollars are down,” said Ms. Begin.
Competition results of the IMA-E competition are scheduled to be announced Sept. 10 with the top three finalists then competing with other region winners at the U.S. Army IMA level in Washington, D.C.
If the 415th BSB wins that competition, they will earn $2 million for the KMC. Second place winners generate $1 million for their communities, and third place winners receive $750,000. Packages must be sent to the Army level competition by November, and results will be announced after the first of the year.
The time period covered in the award is 2003 and the beginning months of 2004. During that time, the battalion’s employees created improved customer service programs such as the web-based online request form for pick-up and delivery of household goods and personal property.
This program was one of the battalion’s five best practices that are now being used throughout the Army. A best practice is a superior method or innovative practice that contributes to improved performance of a process, which is better, faster and cheaper.
The other 415th BSB’s best practices are the Transportation Motor Pool Automated Vehicle Dispatch Program, transportation vehicle car wash, Family Readiness Group Leader training, and Anti-Terrorism and Force Protection Plan.
The battalion also built several community projects during the award time period such as Pulaski Park, which has a playground, picnic area and running track.