Brig. Gen David A. Ottignon, 1st MLG commanding general, began the conference by welcoming Brig. Gen Charles G. Chiarotti, 2nd MLG, Brig Gen. Tracy W. King, 3rd MLG and Brig. Gen. Patrick J. Hermesmann, 4th MLG, and all in attendance and affirmed the importance of holding the meeting.
“This is a victory already in my mind is that we’re just sitting at this table” said Ottignon. “That to me is the single most important thing so that we can have a dialogue and communicate.”
Attending were members of each CG’s staff and representatives from Installations and Logistics at Headquarters Marine Corps. Combining their efforts and information, the conference addressed various topics and proposed plans that will help them stay on the same page while simultaneously operating within their specific operational capabilities and capacities.
Colonel Jamie Collazo, assistant G-3 chief of staff, 1st MLG, attended the conference and was very deliberate in his description of what the conference had covered and achieved.
“As we address the drawdown of forces… the logistics community has been resized and reorganized to fit that structure and we have competing priorities that we need to address as a whole body and we need to provide recommendations to Headquarters Marine Corps in the best way we can to solve some of those shortfalls,” explained Collazo.
At the forefront of their discussion was the impending reorganization of the MLGs to be better prepared to support their respective Marine Expeditionary Force and subsequently accomplish their mission. As a primary function of a MLG, each discussion held tied directly back to the support that the logistics groups would be able to offer their MEF.
“Some of the salient issues that we have today is how we have to organize to meet the fiscal year 17 requirements and continue providing forces to I MEF with a warfighting mission and as a deployable MEF,” described Collazo. “We have to compare [our structure] with the other MLGs and even though we are task organized similarly, we’re addressing completely different scenarios and operational requirements.”
Brig. Gen. Ottignon explained to the conference the need to be able to effectively compare their individual goals and needs and take those conclusions up the chain of command in the most organized way possible so that they can make informed and deliberate change.
“I think each one of us need to look at our MEF commanders, what his requirements to fight his force are and what you’re limitations and strengths are,” explained Ottignon. “We’re all going to be different stories but we all have some commonality and we have to be able to articulate what the differences are and what we need.”
Collazo concurred with the general’s statement and explained that the force reduction is a driving factor in the MLG’s need to be flexible and have effective plans for reorganization.
“As we address the drawdown of forces… the logistics community has been resized and reorganized to fit that structure and we have competing priorities that we need to address as a whole body and we need to provide recommendations to Headquarters Marine Corps in the best way we can solve some of those shortfalls,” stated Collazo.
This is the fourth time the four CGs of the logistics community have come together to better plan for the future of their units. Discussed at the conference was how to formally and accurately charter the quad conference so that it will become a regularly occurring event and what it means to accomplish.
Colonel Collazo said he hopes that the four MLGs can continue to have these meetings in order to better effect change and focus in on how to create a strong operational unit that can continuously achieve its goals and ultimately accomplish their mission.