VIRGINIA BEACH, Virginia — Family members, friends, fellow Soldiers and Virginia National Guard senior leaders gathered to bid a formal farewell to the Soldiers of the Virginia Beach-based 1945th Contracting Team, 329th Regional Support Group, as they began federal active duty May 25, 2019, at the State Military Reservation in Virginia Beach. The ceremony included remarks from Maj. Gen. Timothy P. Williams, the Adjutant General of Virginia, Col. Doyle Gillis, the commander of the 329th RSG, and Maj. Nate Seymour, the commander of the 1945th CT.
“As citizen Soldiers of the commonwealth you have a long, storied tradition and heritage to live up to,” Williams said. “This great brigade has proven itself time and time again, sending Soldiers out the door ready and willing to serve their nation. You are no different. Thank you for your hard work.”
“These men and women have trained for between 10 months and a year, full time, for this very vital mission,” Gillis said. “These folks are well prepared. They trained hard. They trained long. They’re ready.”
The five-Soldier team will travel to Texas for training before heading to the U.S. Central Command area of responsibility where they will support all Army contracting in the region.
A contracting team is a five-person unit that can provide contracting support for deployed units, acquiring goods and services from the commercial sector, stateside or overseas.
“Some of us will serve as administrative contract officers to manage large contracts such as LOGCAP [Logistics Civil Augmentation Program] and HL8 [Heavy Lift 8],” explained Seymour. “Others on our team will be quality assurance specialists who will ensure that the government receives the goods and services that are required.”
The Soldiers of the 1945th have a wide variety of experience and training and all the unit members have worked hard to fulfill the extensive training and experience requirements of this highly-specialized career field, according to Seymour.
Over the past year the five Soldiers have spent countless hours away from their families in order to conduct training for their deployment.
“All deploying Soldiers are required to have at least a year of full-time contracting experience,” Seymour explained. “This is a difficult requirement for those of us that aren’t government acquisition employees.”
As a result, Seymour and two other Soldiers left their civilian jobs last year in order to gain contracting experience for this deployment. While Seymour served full time at Fort Belvoir, Staff Sgt. Tina Jaurequi and Sgt. Kayla Modic spent the past year working at the Norfolk Naval Shipyard.
Maj. Shyra Cullins and Sgt. 1st Class Steve Slater gained valuable contracting experience through their civilian careers at the Defense Logistics Agency.
“This was a long, slow torturous route to get to today,” Williams said. “So this is a big milestone and we’re very proud of all of you.”
The 1945th CT obtained federal recognition July 21, 2009, and previously deployed to Afghanistan in 2014.
The 1945th CT is one of two contracting teams in the Virginia Army National Guard. The 1940th CT is also based in Virginia Beach.