LITTLE ROCK AIR FORCE BASE, Ark. --
“Our mission is your mission.” This motto serves as the backbone of everything that is the 19th Contracting Squadron.
The 19th CONS is tasked with overseeing Team Little Rock’s services and commodities contracts from the time they’re a squadron purchase request through the end of their life cycle.
U.S. Air Force Airman 1st Class Trenton Sikute, 19th CONS contract specialist, assists in effectively accomplishing the mission ensuring every squadron has the necessary tools to maintain safe and agile combat airlift.
“Without contracting, every squadron would be burdened with having to find their own cost effective contracting solutions,” Sikute said. “We allow them to focus on their mission while we enable affordable war-winning capability on time while executing innovative business strategies.”
Contracting specialists help prepare, negotiate and award contracts to qualified vendors as well as evaluate their performances to ensure the money spent is put to its best possible use. With every squadron having a limited budget, it’s paramount that their money is spent efficiently so the mobility mission isn’t halted due to budget constraints.
“I’ve been fortunate enough to be trained by highly skilled contracting officers who help walk me through the process and tirelessly answer my questions.”
U.S. Air Force Tech. Sgt. Phillip Green, 19th Contracting Squadron contracting officer, has been a mentor to Sikute along with being his direct supervisor providing the tools and guidance necessary to succeed.
“Sikute went through the exercise earlier this year as a new Airman and came out the other side with a better knowledge and feel of where he fit into the mission,” Green said. “He became even hungrier to learn because he could feel the impact that he is going to have on this base.”
Sikute recently awarded his first contract, assigning an instructor for the Vital 90 class for fiscal year 2020.
“The next time you’re in a Vital 90 class sweating up a storm and getting yelled at by the ultra-fit instructors, you will know the 19th CONS had a hand in making that happen,” Sikute said.
Although it’s still early in his career, Sikute recognizes his vital role played in the combat airlift mission, reaffirming his decision to join the U.S. Air Force.
“I feel really in debt to the generations before me for the sacrifices they made for us all,” Sikute said. “Serving in the military seemed like a good way to demonstrate that gratitude and to try and do my part.”