Monday, January 26, 2015

Washington Military Alliance Announces Interim Leadership Team

The Washington Military Alliance (WMA) named four members to serve as their executive leadership team while the organization moves forward as a chartered public-partnership formed to provide a single voice in representing the state’s interests as the U.S. Department of Defense proceeds with spending cuts and potential military base downsizing.

Rich Hadley, representing the Association of Washington Business; Tiffany Speir, South Sound Military and Communities Partnership; Gary Brackett, Tacoma-Pierce County Chamber of Commerce, and John Powers, Kitsap Economic Development Alliance will lead the WMA. The leadership team was selected to represent each of the WMA’s four focus areas: industry, infrastructure, military community advocacy organizations, and economic Associate Development Organizations (ADOs) respectively.

“Washington’s military and defense industry represents some $16 billion to our state’s economy and tens of thousands of jobs. I applaud the leaders and members of our Washington Military Alliance for stepping up to promote and protect this vitally important sector,” said Gov. Jay Inslee. “I’m confident that this is a powerful, effective public-private partnership to forge a successful path forward for every community that relies on our military assets.”

Convened in 2012 and formalized through a Memorandum of Understanding by Gov. Inslee in September 2014, WMA is a consortium of some 20 organizations with an economic or workforce interest in the state’s defense community. One of the first major accomplishments of this stakeholder group was a joint effort to secure a $4.3 million USDOD Office of Economic Adjustment (OEA) grant to help assess and forecast statewide economic impact of Washington’s defense industry, and plan local assistance for potential defense industry adjustments.

Over the next six months, the WMA will draft bylaws, identify a sustainable organizational structure, and reach out to additional community stakeholders. The interim executive team was elected to serve until a permanent leadership team is selected through an approved bylaw process.

The group also appointed a committee of members to advise the Washington State Department of Commerce on activities related to the USDOD grant. The OEA grant advisory committee has 11 members: Troy McClelland (Economic Alliance Snohomish County), Robin Toth (Greater Spokane Inc.), Tiffany Scroggs (Thurston County Economic Development Council), Andrea Spencer (City of Bremerton), Sarah Lee (Puget Sound Regional Council), Tiffany Speir (South Sound Military Community Partnership), John Powers (Kitsap Economic Development Council), Rich Hadley (Association of Washington Business), Gary Brackett (Tacoma-Pierce Chamber of Commerce), Dave Hunt (Pacific Northwest Defense Coalition), and an open at-large seat.

About the Washington Military Alliance

Washington State is home to a diverse military industry, with varied military and defense missions, needs, and opportunities and a different stakeholder group for every aspect of an issue related to the military and defense community. It was important to the Governor to convene a group of diverse military community stakeholders to come together with one voice in response to potential cuts to defense spending.

In response, the Washington Military Alliance (WMA) was convened in late 2012 and formalized under Governor Jay Inslee in September, 2014. Find more information here.

Friday, January 23, 2015

JBLM Appreciates Community's Response

Col. Charles Hodges, Joint Base Commander, expresses in this letter his thanks to the community for its involvement in the Army Community Listening Session and support of JBLM.

(Click on Image for a larger view)

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Army Community Listening Session Huge Success

A Message from South Sound Military and Communities Partnership:

Hello and THANK YOU for your participation in the Army's listening session about a proposed 11,000 reduction in force (active duty and civilian contractors) at Joint Base Lewis-McChord.

Over 500 people attended today's event and 67 people testified in person, including WA Governor Jay Inslee, Pierce County Executive Pat McCarthy, Thurston County Commissioner Sandra Romero, Mayors and Council members from Lacey, Lakewood, Yelm, University Place, DuPont, Olympia, Orting, and many more.  The event ran an hour longer than scheduled due to the large turnout.

If you were in attendance but were not able to speak and have comments to provide, please send them ASAP to:

HQDA G3/5/7
400 Army Pentagon
Washington, DC  20310

Please be sure to state that you were in attendance but were unable to stay the entire time to testify:  "I was there but I couldn't stay the whole time."

The Northwest Now show regarding possible cuts to JBLM will air January 23, 2015 on KBTC at 7:30.  If  you are unable to watch tonight, here’s a link to where you can see the show on our website after 1/23 at 8:00pm:

Today's listening session was recorded by PCTV, and it will be part of the Pierce County News Broadcast that will run daily between 1/29 and 2/5 at 7:30 pm.  You can link to PCTV's website HERE.

Again, thank you for showing your support for and concern about JBLM!

South Sound Military & Communities Partnership

UPDATE:  JAN. 22, 2015

Q13 Fox

KING 5 News

The News Tribune

The News Tribune (editorial)

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