ASA (ALT) official visits PEO Soldier

Ms. Steffanie Easter, Principal Deputy to the Assistant Secretary of the Army (Acquisitions, Logistics and Technology), receives a briefing from BG Brian P. Cummings, Program Executive Officer Soldier, during her visit March 22.

Ms. Steffanie Easter, Principal Deputy to the Assistant Secretary of the Army (Acquisitions, Logistics and Technology), receives a briefing from BG Brian P. Cummings, Program Executive Officer Soldier, during her visit March 22.

FORT BELVOIR, Va. – The Principal Deputy to the Assistant Secretary of the Army (Acquisition, Logistics and Technology) (ASA(ALT)) visited Program Executive Office (PEO) Soldier March 22 to learn how the organization supports Soldiers.

Ms. Steffanie B. Easter made her first visit to PEO Soldier this week. The purpose of the trip was to get Ms. Easter, who comes to the Army from an already long and distinguished career in both the Air Force and the Navy, an introduction to PEO Soldier. The mission of the PEO is to develop, acquire, field and sustain affordable integrated state-of-the-art equipment to improve Soldier dominance in Army operations today and in the future.

Understanding Lifecycle Management efficiency and its effect on Soldiers is important to Ms. Easter. A concern of hers was how organizations in the Soldier enterprise, being geographically separated, affected mission performance. Were units spending more time keeping people on track versus getting product out the door? “Are we as efficient?” Ms. Easter asked. BG Brian P. Cummings, Program Executive Officer Soldier, said he has no issues working with his Maneuver Center of Excellence (MCoE) counterparts at Fort Benning, Ga., or his Army Materiel Command Lifecycle Management Command partners at various locations across the United States.

Steffanie Easter, ASA(ALT) Principal Deputy, receives a Soldier Protection Briefing March 22.

Steffanie Easter, ASA(ALT) Principal Deputy, receives a Soldier Protection Briefing March 22.

PEO Soldier provided a full display of its portfolio and briefings, which only whetted her appetite. “I’m coming back,” she said.

At PM Soldier Warrior (PM SWAR), she learned how the PM is integrating Soldier equipment and lightening their loads through the Warrior Integration Site (WinSite) and the Load Effects Assessment Program-Army (LEAP-A). She saw how the Nett Warrior program integrates dismounted situational awareness and mission command system, how Soldier Power supplies, harnesses and generates power, and how the Tactical Communication and Protective System (TCAPS) prevents hearing loss. She also learned 40 percent of PEO Soldier’s portfolio came from submissions through the Soldier Enhancement Program (SEP).

Steffanie Easter, ASA(ALT) Principal Deputy, reviews Rapid Equipping Force (REF) Unmanned Aerial System (UAS) projects March 22.

Steffanie Easter, ASA(ALT) Principal Deputy, reviews Rapid Equipping Force (REF) Unmanned Aerial System (UAS) projects March 22.

PM Soldier Sensors and Lasers (PM SSL) showed Ms. Easter a variety of night-vision devices and sensors. She noted the equipment has reduced in size and weight while increasing in capability through time. She also saw the Joint Effects Targeting System (JETS), which is the key to bringing to bear the full effects of precision fire.

PM Soldier Weapons (PM SW) explained sniper rifles, and the XM25 Counter Defilade Target Engagement (CDTE) system and how it brings precision fire control down to the Soldier level.

PM Soldier Protection and Individual Equipment (PM SPIE) demonstrated the evolution of Soldier protective body armor, and explained how the Soldier Protection System (SPS) tailors to mission demands. She learned the Female Improved Outer Tactical Vest (FIOTV) is receiving overwhelming favorable reviews.

Wrapping up her visit, Ms. Easter learned how the Rapid Equipping Force (REF) fills a Soldier capability gap within 180 days. For example, REF explained a prototype system that counters drone threats by denying communication signals to a drone.

Steffanie Easter, ASA(ALT) Principal Deputy, tries the Tactical Reconnaissance Infrared Geolocating Rangefinder (TRIGR) March 22.

Steffanie Easter, ASA(ALT) Principal Deputy, tries the Tactical Reconnaissance Infrared Geolocating Rangefinder (TRIGR) March 22.

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