Name: Richard Alabeh
Job title: General Supply Specialist
Assigned: Logistics Readiness Center Stuttgart, 405th Army Field Support Brigade
Location: Panzer Kaserne, Stuttgart, Germany
Experience: I started working at LRC Stuttgart about four years ago. I worked at the Property Book Office for the first two and a half years, and then I accepted a promotion and assumed my current position as a LRC Stuttgart general supply specialist. Before working here, I was working as a cashier for about a year at the Exchange on Patch Barracks in Stuttgart. Before that, I was studying at a University in Stuttgart where I received a master’s degree in Natural Resource Management.
Hometown: Buea, Cameroon
Family: I’ve been married to my wife, Antoinette, for 11.5 years. We have a daughter, Empress-Liv, who will turn 3 in September.
Q: Can you explain what you do as a general supply specialist at LRC Stuttgart?
A: I am the $25,000 Government Purchase Card holder for LRC Stuttgart. With the GPC, I receive acquisition requests from the various directorates and sections, such as the Transportation Motor Pool, Central Issue Facility, Drivers Testing and Training Station and more. I receive their requests and then talk to the vendors to compete the transactions. When I receive the supplies or equipment ordered, I reach out to the requesters and arrange for pickup or delivery. I also operate an online accounting and supply system tool that we are required by policy to use. For example, at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic we were required to order medical masks using only this system. We could not purchase the masks on the economy with a GPC. When I started working at this position, I implemented the operation of this online accounting and supply system at LRC Benelux. It had never been used here before, and since then I’ve trained other supply specialists on how to use the system, as well.
Q: Why is your position at LRC Stuttgart so important?
A: My position is important because the ordering of equipment, office supplies and work orders all goes through me. Without me, the system of accounting would not be successful. Every organization should have a system of checks and balances. I’m part of that system for LRC Stuttgart. When something needs to be ordered, the billing official will provide a signature of authorization, but the procurement process is completely managed by me. This helps to establish accountability. We are obligated to properly account for all government funding and government property, and I assist with this process. When one of the directorates or sections at LRC Stuttgart needs supplies or equipment, it’s up to me. They don’t know where I’m getting it from. All they want to see is the supplies and equipment they need in order to complete all their various tasks and missions. And I make that happen.
Q: What do you enjoy about your job, and what motivates you?
A: Working in logistics is exactly where I want to be. I really enjoy it. There is no organization or business today that operates efficiently without good logistics. Working for the U.S. government, you have many opportunities to grow – not just to grow but to gain more knowledge and exploit new opportunities. When your supervisors and leaders see that you doing all the right things, they will let you know. And they will also correct you when you are not. That’s where you also grow and gain knowledge. The sky is the limit, but it’s up to you. If you have the knowledge and the will, no one can ever take that away from you.
LRC-Stuttgart and 405th AFSB: LRC Stuttgart is one of seven LRCs under the command and control of the 405th AFSB. LRCs execute installation logistics support and services to include supply, maintenance, transportation and food service management as well as clothing issue facility operations, hazardous material management, personal property and household goods, passenger travel, and non-tactical vehicle and garrison equipment management. When it comes to providing day-to-day installation services, LRC Stuttgart directs, manages and coordinates a variety of operations and activities in support of U.S. Army Garrison Stuttgart. LRC Stuttgart reports to the 405th AFSB, which is assigned to U.S. Army Sustainment Command and under the operational control of the 21st Theater Sustainment Command, U.S. Army Europe and Africa. The brigade is headquartered in Kaiserslautern, Germany, and provides materiel enterprise support to U.S. Forces throughout Europe and Africa – providing theater sustainment logistics; synchronizing acquisition, logistics and technology; and leveraging U.S. Army Materiel Command’s materiel enterprise to support joint forces. For more information on the 405th AFSB, visit the official website at www.afsbeurope.army.mil and the official Facebook site at www.facebook.com/405thAFSB.