With three major milestones complete, Air Force Materiel Command officials are ready to consolidate the number of centers as part of its command-wide transition to the 5-Center construct.
Centers will be activated at Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio, and Tinker AFB, Okla., in the coming weeks. At Edwards AFB, Calif., the Air Force Flight Test Center will be redesignated the Air Force Test Center to reflect an expanded mission to cover all test activities. At about the same time, AFMC will begin the process of consolidating the centers from 12 to five.
The 5-Center construct was announced in November 2011 as a major part of AFMC’s response to a Department of Defense challenge to find efficiencies and save tax dollars. By reducing and consolidating overhead, the command will improve the way it accomplishes its diverse mission and will provide better support to the war fighter. This effort will save about $109 million annually.
“We are transitioning the command in a way that will create opportunities for more efficient and responsive support to the war fighter while also saving the taxpayer money,” said Gen. Janet Wolfenbarger, AFMC commander.
AFMC moves forward with the 5-Center construct having met three critical requirements. The Senate has confirmed AFMC’s new general officers to lead the consolidated centers, two Congressionally mandated reports have been delivered to Congress, and Headquarters Air Force has formally approved the transition.
At Wright-Patterson AFB, the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center will activate on July 9; however, the activation ceremony will take place on July 20 in conjunction with Aeronautical Systems Center becoming part of AFLCMC and the retirement ceremony for Lt. Gen. Thomas Owen, commander of the ASC. Also on July 9, Air Force Security Assistance Center will become the Air Force Security Assistance and Cooperation Directorate. It will continue its foreign military sales mission as part of AFLCMC from its Wright-Patterson AFB location.
The Electronic Systems Center at Hanscom AFB, Mass., will become part of AFLCMC on July 16 and will continue its critical mission at Hanscom AFB as it does today. The dual mission of test and air armament development at the Air Armament Center at Eglin AFB, Fla., will become part of the Air Force Test Center at Edwards AFB and AFLCMC, respectively. The air armament development portion of AAC will become part of AFLCMC on July 18.
AFLCMC will be led by Lt. Gen. C.D. Moore II, presently the AFMC vice commander.
On July 10, the Air Force Sustainment Center will be activated at Tinker AFB and will be led by Lt. Gen. (sel) Bruce Litchfield. It will consolidate oversight of the command’s sustainment mission now carried out by air logistics centers at Tinker AFB, Robins AFB, Ga., and Hill AFB, Utah, along with the Air Force Global Logistics Support Center at Scott AFB, Ill. The logistics centers will be redesignated as air logistics complexes.
The center at Tinker AFB will be redesignated on July 10. AFGLSC at Scott AFB will see its mission transition to AFSC on July 11. The Hill AFB center will transition to a complex on July 12, while Robins AFB’s center will transition to a complex on July 17.
At Edwards AFB, the redesignated Air Force Test Center will begin operations on July 6, however a formal ceremony to mark the transition will be held July 13. Also on July 13, the 95th Air Base Wing at Edwards AFB will transition with its people and mission moving to the 412th Test Wing. The test center will be led by Brig. Gen. Arnold Bunch Jr. The center will oversee the command’s test mission maintained at Edwards AFB, Eglin AFB and Arnold AFB, Tenn.
On July 18 at Eglin AFB, the 96th ABW will be redesignated the 96th TW. The people and mission of the current 46th TW will transition to the newly designated 96th TW. Both the Eglin and Edwards AFBs’ test wings will then align to the AFTC.
On July 6, the Arnold Engineering and Development Center at Arnold AFB, Tenn., will be redesignated as a complex and align with the test center at Edwards AFB.
The life cycle management, sustainment and test centers will be joined by the present Air Force Research Laboratory at Wright-Patterson AFB and the Air Force Nuclear Weapons Center at Kirtland AFB, N.M., to complete the five-center line-up.
When complete, the actions delineated above will lead up to initial operational capability on Oct. 1, and full operational capability by mid-2013.
Gen. Wolfenbarger took command of AFMC on June 5, replacing Gen. Donald Hoffman. Lt. Gen. Moore will be replaced as vice commander by Lt. Gen. (sel) Andrew Busch, presently the commander of the Ogden Air Logistics Center at Hill AFB.