A-10 team garners 2015 Roche Sustainment Excellence Award

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HILL AIR FORCE BASE, Utah — The Air Force Life Cycle Management Center’s A-10 Division at Hill AFB has been honored with the 2015 Dr. James G. Roche Sustainment Excellence Award.

Gen. Ellen Pawlikowski, Air Force Materiel Command commander, presented the award Aug. 31, to Dawn Sutton and the A-10 System Program Office during a meeting of AFMC leaders at Hill AFB. Sutton leads the team charged with supporting the Air Force’s fleet of 283 A-10 Thunderbolt II close-air-support aircraft.

The award is presented annually based upon objective criteria to the AFMC program office with the most improved performance in fleet sustainment during the given fiscal year. Metrics evaluated include aircraft availability, mission capable and cannibalization rates, along with nonmission capable rates for supply and maintenance.

During Fiscal 2015, the A-10 fleet flew nearly 87,000 worldwide flying hours and delivered an aircraft availability rate of 67.9 percent, a 5 percent gain over the previous year. Sutton said the depot maintenance team reduced depot-possessed aircraft to the lowest rate in a decade and field maintenance personnel reduced the not-mission-capable-for-maintenance rate by nearly 20 percent to 13.9 percent. During the period, the team also reduced the cost per flying hour over $2,000, to $17,138, AFLCMC officials said.

The maintenance, repair and operational improvements were noted to have taken place while executing A-10 combat operations against ISIL, as well as a short-notice Theater Support Package in support of Operation Atlantic Resolve to demonstrate U.S. resolve toward security and stability in Eastern Europe.

This fall, the venerable A-10 will celebrate nearly 41 years of service. The first production A-10A was delivered to the Davis Monthan AFB in October 1975.

The award is named after Dr. James Roche, a former U.S. Navy officer and the 20th Secretary of the Air Force.