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Marine Corps Logistics Base Albany


Readiness Enabler for Operational Forces  •
Manager Saves Marine Corps Money

By Marti Gatlin | | December 15, 2011

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Robbin Lamb, spectrum and land mobile radio manager, Communication and Information Systems Division, Marine Corps Logistics Base Albany, received the base’s Employee of the Year Award for 2011, recently.

Lamb, one of nine employees nominated for the recognition, received the award for saving the command more than $2 million and providing hand-held and vehicular radios, at no cost, to all first responders and tenant commands. She also prevented an unneeded expenditure of $40,000 to repair the existing radio tower by speeding up the process of constructing a new tower with fiscal 2011 funds, according to base officials. “It was a surprise and it was an honor (to win),” Lamb said. “I have to say that the only way I can do my job is with the support of the division, my branch and people like my radio technicians. It makes it easier to do my job when I feel like I am supported by all of them. I enjoy my job.”

In 2007, the Marine Corps began an initiative called Enterprise Land Mobile Radio to standardize radio communications throughout the service and MCLB Albany is roughly number 20 on the list for standardization, Lamb added. “ELMR will require the replacement of all radios and support equipment, such as base stations, repeaters, antennas, consoles and a new tower with (a) shelter will be built to support the new system,” Lamb said. “In June 2010, the Marine Corps combined the ELMR initiative with a program to standardize emergency dispatch centers.” The new tower is needed to sustain the base’s current communication infrastructure as well as the new ELMR, she explained. “The current tower is unsafe to make repairs on any existing equipment that’s already up there,” Lamb said. In order to sustain the current system and equipment until the ELMR is put in place, Lamb made inquiries at other Marine Corps bases for equipment. She updated the current first responders’ radios with more than 300 used handheld radios from Okinawa, Japan, that were newer than MCLB Albany’s. The old equipment from Okinawa, that already implemented its ELMR, was in MCLB Albany’s frequency range. Because she was able to get newer used radios, Lamb saved the Marine Corps money. “The radios were valued at 1.5 million dollars,” she said, noting the old first responders’ radios that were still serviceable were reprogrammed by the Ground Electronic Maintenance shop staff with new frequencies and used for other departments. Lamb also identified the first responder communication infrastructure as lacking, and if the primary Marine Corps Police Department radio console didn’t work, there was no back-up. “We now have a back-up console at (MCPD) with a back-up radio repeater (a transmitter and a receiver as well as) purchased a new dispatch console (and) fixed the old one so it serves as a back-up,” she said. Serving in her billet since September 2007, Lamb was also responsible for the establishment of the GEM shop aboard the base. GEM staff maintains land mobile radio systems, such as handheld and vehicle radios, repeaters, base stations and antennas and manages the life cycle of those items. Kent Morrison, executive director, MCLB Albany, said Lamb’s achievements gave her the edge in winning the award. “It was a true pleasure and honor to see Ms. Lamb recognized as our MCLB Employee of the Year,” Morrison said. “Competition was tough, and all candidates were very deserving, but the accomplishments she has achieved this past year were the driving factors that pushed her ahead of her peers. She is truly a joy to be around in both her work attitude and the joyful, personal manner in which she presents herself to others. We are blessed to have employees like Robbin aboard the installation. Her upbeat and dedicated approach to her job is refreshing and is an example for all to follow.” Lori Farr, deputy director, CISD, commended Lamb for winning the Employee of the Year honor. “It is so exciting to see Robbin recognized for all of her hard work supporting the base and tenant organizations,” Farr said. “She has such a positive and professional attitude and is always willing to go above and beyond expectations to accomplish the mission while providing exceptional support and customer service. One of the many strong qualities that Robbin possesses is the ability to see beyond the immediate challenge, look at the big picture and present opportunities that are both innovative and sound. It is an honor and pleasure to have her as part of the CISD team.” Another CISD co-worker praised Lamb for her achievements. “Ms. Lamb can always be counted on to go the extra mile,” Dave Tennyson, Operations Branch Head, CISD, said. “Ms. Lamb has identified the potential for problems in complex equipment installation packages resulting in a savings of many hours of troubleshooting and downtime. On many occasions, Ms. Lamb has provided new approaches to problem solving that show initiative and innovation. Her intense desire to put the customer first is a great asset to CISD.”


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