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NEWS | April 3, 2024

Chief of quality assurance at AFSBn-Africa has made a career out of supporting APS

By Cameron Porter 405th Army Field Support Brigade

Linda Eckley started working for the Army in 1997. Since then, she’s supported Army Prepositioned Stocks operations in Iraq, Israel, England, Norway, Korea, Japan and even afloat. And after 27 years with the Army, the newly selected chief of quality assurance at Army Field Support Battalion-Africa in Italy is still supporting APS.

“I’ve worked APS pretty much my whole career,” said the former engineer, now chief of QA at the APS-2 worksite in Livorno. “I was fortunate. I did take my engineering career to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for a brief time, but my passion has always been with the APS mission.”

“I’ve always had positions in APS that I enjoy, primarily in engineering until now. And when you have someone who understands the mission and has the experience, I suppose you want to try to keep them,” said Eckley, who has a background in mechanical and structural engineering and is currently performing engineer duties at AFSBn-Africa in addition to her job as the chief of QA until an engineer is hired and arrives at the site.

As AFSBn-Africa’s QA chief, Eckley has six QA specialists, a deputy, a team of four QA inventory management clerks and an active-duty Army chief warrant officer 3. Eckley said her team’s success starts with the quality assurance surveillance program, or QASP. That’s where her team goes through every task and every maintenance specific mission and captures that data to provide to the directorate of maintenance to assist with the quality control plan. And the same is true for the directorate of supply and their many tasks, she added.

“This is all in house to make sure that we perform quality maintenance and supply tasks in accordance with all the regulations,” said Eckley, who hails from Claysburg, Pennsylvania. “Whether that’s equipment maintenance, equipment storage, hazardous material management, shelf-life management, humidity control, et cetera – there are so many processes and mission tasks of the battalion that need to be captured, organized, standardized and monitored for quality completion.”

“I am also updating our standards of achievement and providing guidance on how to achieve, and how deficiencies will be reported based on level of severity,” said the Penn State University graduate who holds a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering and another in structural engineering. “Fortunately, here we have a very good staff. The local national workforce is excellent, and the command has first-rate mechanics and supply clerks.”

Eckley said having a local national direct-hire workforce at the Leghorn Army Depot APS-2 site, affords the AFSBn-Africa commander high-quality services at a much lower cost versus employing a contracted workforce. But at the same time, Eckley said her team of QA professionals are there to make sure everything that leaves the worksite on mission is at the highest state of readiness and quality.

Currently, some of Eckley’s team members are working in Kaiserslautern, Germany, supporting an M2 Bradley fighting vehicle maintenance and restoration program initiative there, and for DEFENDER 24, Eckley’s team will be participating in equipment configuration and hand-off area operations as AFSBn-Africa has been tasked with issuing a cavalry squadron APS-2 equipment set to one of the deployed tactical units participating in the exercise.

“When the brigade requires quality assurance support, they reach out to us for many things, and we try to support every mission the brigade requires of us,” she said.

When Eckley’s attention is not directed toward APS-2 operations and AFSBn-Africa, she said her faith and her love of animals are her focus. In the past, she’s worked animal rescue missions in the U.S. where hurricanes and tropical storms are more prevalent, and currently the cat mom of four volunteers with a local pet rescue group in Italy, helping with strays and abandoned pets.

“I’m also proud to be a Christian, and I rely heavily on my prayers and my faith in God,” she added.

AFSBn-Africa is charged with receiving, maintaining and storing APS-2 at Leghorn Army Depot. In addition, the battalion is well postured to issue APS-2 to gaining tactical units at locations forward – known as equipment configuration and handoff areas, or ECHAs. Organizations AFSBn-Africa directly support – helping to enable readiness across two theaters of operations – are U.S. European Command, U.S. Africa Command, U.S. Army Europe and Africa, Southern European Task Force-Africa, the 173rd Airborne Brigade, and other strategic partners and allies.

AFSBn-Africa is one of four battalions under the mission command of the 405th Army Field Support Brigade. The 405th AFSB is assigned to U.S. Army Sustainment Command and headquartered in Kaiserslautern, Germany. The brigade 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 and the official Facebook site at