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NEWS | March 25, 2022

“Home of the Ultimate Weapon” hosts USARC Conference

By Senior Airman Matt Porter 87th Air Base Wing

The Army Support Activity Fort Dix served as the host for the U.S. Army Reserve Command’s Senior Leader and Garrison Commander Conference held March 23-24, 2022.

U.S. Army Maj. Gen. Gregory Mosser, U.S. Army Reserve Command deputy commanding general, led the two-day conference where garrison command teams and senior leaders from across the U.S. Army Reserve came together to lay the foundation for training, readiness, and garrison infrastructure advancement over the next 10 years.

The goal of this vital forum is to forge the resilient garrisons of the future by overcoming challenges in resources through innovation and prioritization of key partnerships within and without the U.S. Army Reserve, according to Mosser.

ASA Fort Dix serves a unique role as the only U.S. Army Reserve garrison on a joint base and the only tri-service joint base in the Department of Defense.

“There is no greater example of a resilient garrison than what I’ve witnessed during my command,” said Col. Jon Brierton, ASA Fort Dix commander. “From the pause in training during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, to the constrained resources that followed, and recently supporting over 10,000 Afghan refugees with Operation Allies Welcome, we overcame unprecedented obstacles to successfully carry out the mission.”

ASA Fort Dix is responsible for a 28,000–acre range and training area complex, which contains 14,000 acres of maneuver space, 62 live–fire ranges, 36 bivouac sites and a contingency operating location.

Under normal circumstances, the garrison, dubbed the “Home of the Ultimate Weapon,” facilitates the training of more than 250,000 personnel from across multiple services every year.

“Hosting this conference was key to establishing ASA Fort Dix as the preeminent training and readiness platform for the U.S. Army Reserve,” Brierton said. “Being able to learn from senior leadership during this conference and showcase the garrison at the same time is invaluable towards achieving our goal.”

The conference discussions centered mainly on the Facilities Investment Plan. The FIP is a 10-year prioritized plan coordinated across the U.S. Army that invests in required infrastructure to maximize the effectiveness of every dollar.

“Amateurs talk tactics, professionals talk logistics and resource management,” said Maj. Gen. Rodney Faulk, 99th Readiness Division commanding general. “We need innovative and practical thinking applied to investments for our garrison infrastructure. If something is new and shiny, we must make sure, above all, that it works. Now is not the time to purchase for the sake of purchasing, or to train for the sake of training, our efforts must be purpose driven with a high impact on readiness.”

A goal of the conference was to generate innovative solutions that directly impact garrisons like ASA Fort Dix.

As weapon systems and the operational environment evolve, it’s crucial that infrastructure improvement projects continue to leverage garrisons as platforms to train, sustain, mobilize and deploy, according to Brierton.

“Improvements to the garrison infrastructure and personnel quality of life not only benefits the U.S. Army Reserve, but all the other services that train using our facilities,” said Brierton. “We’re in a unique position to support the training and readiness of the tri-service as a result of the plans set into motion with this conference. A rising tide lifts all boats.”