Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri – July 8, 2016 – After months of great anticipation, leaders from the Fort Leonard Wood Region traveled to Washington D.C. from Monday, June 20 through Wednesday, June 22 to attend the Association of Defense Community’s National Summit 16 where region leaders gained insight into the future of defense community policies and practices, as well as accepted the official Great American Defense Communities award on behalf of the communities of the Fort Leonard Wood Region.
The Great American Defense Communities program was launched this year to acknowledge the unique contributions cities, counties and regions that host installations make to improve quality of life for service members, veterans and their families. The Fort Leonard Wood Region was one of 10 communities that received the award during the program’s inaugural year.
“We were honored to represent the Fort Leonard Wood Region at the Association of Defense Communities (ADC) National Summit 2016 and accept the Great American Defense Communities award on behalf of all of the citizens in the region. This award symbolizes the amazing support that our military members and their Families receive from the citizens, local government organizations, and business owners in our region,” said Leonard Wood Institute and Sustainable Ozarks Partnership Executive Director Kent Thomas.
However, the ADC’s National Summit was about much more than awards. The three-day event allowed for region leaders to attend a variety of forums that focused on providing defense communities with the knowledge and information they need to best support their respective defense communities.
The conference provided ample opportunity for defense communities to network with each other, share best practice ideas, and gain a better understanding of the current policies and procedures that effect their ability to support their local defense installations. Many of these forums focused on things the Fort Leonard Wood Region is currently working on, including renewable energy and public-public and public-private partnerships.
“We see more and more emphasis placed on these programs and we continue looking for innovative ways to facilitate mutually beneficial partnerships. ADC events are a great place to develop these ideas,” said Leonard Wood Institute and Sustainable Ozarks Partnership Program Manager Dorsey Newcomb.
SOP leaders will work toward applying what they learned at the conference into our strategic planning and will continue to stay connected to ADC and its network of community leaders, defense experts and DOD officials.
The Sustainable Ozarks Partnership is building on the Fort Leonard Wood Region’s strong past and preparing the region for a healthy, resilient future. We are a nonprofit organization working to bring all of the region’s stakeholders to the table to drive regional development and advocate for new or expanded military and federal missions, all as part of our efforts to strengthen the Fort Leonard Wood region.