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NEWS | July 30, 2016

AG signs agreements to build on partnership with Blackstone

By Cotton Puryear | Virginia National Guard Public Affairs

Maj. Gen. Timothy P. Williams, the Adjutant General of Virginia, visited the Blackstone Chamber of Commerce July 28, 2016, and signed two memorandums of understanding with Blackstone aimed at strengthening the relationship between the town and the Virginia National Guard’s Fort Pickett Maneuver Training Center.

“It was a phenomenal opportunity to meet with representatives of the Blackstone Chamber of Commerce and discuss how we can build deeper partnerships between the community and Fort Pickett to see where we can leverage each other’s strengths,” Williams said. “Fort Pickett can’t survive and thrive into the future unless the town and counties around it are partners at the table, and it is going to take everyone pulling together to grow the opportunities that support it.”

One agreement establishes that Fort Pickett and the town of Blackstone will share information on recreational opportunities to include collaborating on possible joint activities like road races and July 4th activities. The second agreement establishes that Fort Pickett will provide space for promotional information at the welcome center, airfield flight operations, fitness center, leisure center, billeting office and 183rd Regiment, Regional Training Institute on recreational and leisure activities in Blackstone.

The U. S. Army established the Army Community Partnership Program that encourages installations to meet with public entities around military facilities to explore opportunities to share resources or seek cost savings in similar operations, explained Lt. Col. Preston Scott, Fort Pickett garrison commander.

“The program seeks to maximize available resources through savings or cost avoidance, maintain or improve services for Soldiers and families, strengthen relationships between installations and communities and create efficiencies,” Scott said. “Our agreements achieve this goal of providing mutual benefit to the community and the Installation through shared information and opportunities to build esprit de corps in the local area.”

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