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News and Updates from the Washington Military Alliance

Washington Military Alliance Unanimously Adopts Operations Plan and Founding Executive Committee

Washington State – The membership of the Washington Military Alliance (WMA) unanimously approved its operations plan and elected its founding Executive Committee at its mid-year membership meeting in Spokane, WA on June 26th.

Convened in 2012 by Governor Gregoire and formalized through a Memorandum of Understanding by Governor Inslee on September 2014, the WMA is a consortium of over 20 organizations with an economic or workforce interest in the state’s military and defense community. Over the last several months, the organization has conducted extensive outreach to its membership base across the state, and has established the organization’s vision, mission, and goals. Through this process the WMA has identified a sustainable organizational structure which will allow the WMA to increase its support of military and defense communities state wide.

While the WMA will continue as an advisory board to the state, it has refined how it will serve its mission and meet its goals beyond providing input to policymakers in the state. The organization has defined its roles and responsibilities to the military and defense sector in the state as follows:

  • Promote the importance of the state’s military infrastructure (including installations, missions, and workforce) and defense industries as key economic drivers in Washington at the local, state, and national level;
  • Coordinate local, state, and federal partnerships in order to maximize economic, civil, commercial, cultural, educational, and social opportunities presented by the military and defense sector;
  • Partner with member organizations to support each military installation in accomplishing their current and future missions;
  • Position the state to retain current military infrastructure and attract new assets;
  • Work with the Washington State Department of Commerce and local economic development organizations to support the defense sector supply chain through retention, expansion, and recruitment opportunities;
  • Serve as an information, data, and programmatic resource for communities impacted by military basing, mission, and procurement decisions.
  • The WMA’s partnership and alignment with the Washington State Department of Commerce is essential to the ongoing success of the militatry and defense sector in the state. Commerce and the WMA will work closely to support the missions and visions of each effort.

“The WMA is collaboration between multiple organizations that support and encourage new and continuing investment of the military and defense sector in the state. That spirit makes us unique in the nation and the core strength of the WMA,” said newly designated WMA Executive Director Kristiné Reeves. Reeves will continue as the Governor’s Sector Lead & Director, Military & Defense Sector and will now serve as the WMA Executive Director as well. “The WMA has garnered extensive recognition for the state at the national level and its continued success will allow multiple stakeholders in the state to speak with one voice to address challenges and seize opportunities that will surface. The state is well served by the leadership that is committed to the organization and support of the military and defense sector”.

The organization will be supported by a Board of Directors made up of the Advisory Committee members who were originally convened to advise Commerce on activities related to a $4.8 million Department of Defense, Office of Economic Adjustment grant awarded last year. The grant was awarded to assess and forecast the statewide economic impact of Washington’s defense industry and to plan local assistance for potential defense industry adjustments. That work will continue.

The founding Executive Committee of the WMA will be composed of the organization’s Leadership Team and will have a Treasurer and Secretary as well as Co-Chairs representing Eastern and Western Washington. The Executive Committee includes: Eastern Washington Co-Chair Rich Hadley, representing the Association of Washington Business; Western Washington Co-Chair John Powers with Kitsap Economic Development Alliance; Tiffany Speir, with the South Sound Military and Communities Partnership serving as Treasurer; Gary Brackett, with the Tacoma-Pierce County Chamber of Commerce serving as Board Secretary; and WMA Executive Director Kristiné Reeves.

In the coming months the WMA will continue to refine its action strategy, identify other member organizations, and implement portions of the Office of Economic Adjustment grant. To learn more about the organization please go to www.wamilitaryalliance.org

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About the Washington Military Alliance

The Washington Military Alliance (WMA) is a coalition of partner organizations collectively dedicated to enhancing the strength and health of military and defense related activities throughout the state. The WMA provides a framework for collaboration in the state between local governments, military installations, defense community support organizations, industry associations, state agencies, and economic development organizations to coordinate activities and resources in support of Washington’s Military and Defense sector and collect and disseminate economic information about its impact and fluctuations. For more information, visit us online at http://wamilitaryalliance.org/

 

CONTACT:

Kristiné M. Reeves

Executive Director Washington Military Alliance

Kristine.Reeves@wamilitaryalliance.org

Main: 206-256-6109

Direct: 206-256-6105

 

Download the Press Release Here.

Washington Military Alliance Responds to Army Downsizing at Joint Base Lewis-McChord

Washington State – Yesterday, the Department of Defense (DoD) announced its intention to reduce the size of the Army across the nation by 40,000 active duty troops over the next two years. Locally, Joint Base Lewis-McChord will lose 1,250 troops across multiple units along with an unknown number of civilian personnel and military contractors.

The Washington Military Alliance (WMA) – which includes local economic developers, industry associations, and community partnership organizations (learn more here) – is poised to work closely with the state to mitigate the economic impacts of this downsizing.

“Although today’s announcement is South Sound Army specific, the effects of this reduction will be felt in communities across the state. The Washington Military Alliance is importantly focused on acting as a common voice for stakeholders in this community”, said Rich Hadley, Co-Chair of the WMA. “We appreciate the Governor for convening this group in 2012 and a grateful to all the participants that make our work possible.”

Additionally, the WMA applauds Governor Inslee for convening an eleven agency Subcabinet on Military Downsizing to prepare a state response plan in anticipation of the Army’s announcement today.

“The Washington Military Alliance appreciates the hard work being done by the agency directors and the governor. This Subcabinet will help our members create a local coordinated response to Army cuts at JBLM, making transition as smooth of a process as possible,” says Kristiné Reeves, Executive Director of the Washington Military Alliance.

To serve members of community affected by the downsizing announcement, the WMA has launched a resources page for affected personnel and the business community surrounding the base. Visit http://wamilitaryalliance.org/downsizingsupport/

The military and defense sector plays a significant role in Washington’s economy. In 2013, DoD spending in Washington topped $13.1 billion dollars and represented 3.2 percent of the state’s GDP. Washington ranks in the top ten states for military spending and is the 6th most military populated state. Of the 112,560 military personnel in Washington, over half reside in the South Puget Sound.

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About the Washington Military Alliance

The Washington Military Alliance (WMA) is a coalition of partner organizations collectively dedicated to enhancing the strength and health of military and defense related activities throughout the state. The WMA provides a framework for collaboration in the state between local governments, military installations, defense community support organizations, industry associations, state agencies, and economic development organizations to coordinate activities and resources in support of Washington’s Military and Defense sector and collect and disseminate economic information about its impact and fluctuations. For more information, visit us online at http://wamilitaryalliance.org/

 

 

CONTACT:

Kristiné M. Reeves

Executive Director Washington Military Alliance

Kristine.Reeves@WAMilitaryAlliance.org

Main: 206-256-6109

Direct: 206-256-6105

Download this Press Release Here.

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