WR-ALC welcomes new executive director

  • Published
  • By Kendahl Johnson
  • 78th ABW/PA
The Warner Robins Air Logistics Center recently welcomed Dr. Steve Butler as its new executive director.

Dr. Butler, who joined Team Robins in August, said he is pleased to be at Robins and has received a warm welcome.

"Robins is a great place to work with many wonderful opportunities," he said. "Everyone both on base and in the community has warmly welcomed me. As you would expect from the South, everyone is very friendly. I hope my background and expertise will be valuable to the Center."

Dr. Butler will be working closely with Maj. Gen. Tom Owen, WR-ALC commander, in mentoring both military and civilians. He is particularly interested in the professional growth of the civilian workforce.

"I want to build on the efforts of my predecessors in growing the civilian professionalism here," he said. "With the ongoing war on terror, many of the active-duty military will be required to go to other places and serve in other roles. Because of that, we have more opportunity and a greater need for civilians to fill leadership roles. Many of our civilians have never taken on leadership of large teams so we need to get them ready to assume those responsibilities and be prepared to take on those roles."

Dr. Butler said there has been an effort to "blue" some of our civilians, or help them grow into leadership roles formerly only available to our military members, and he will be active in providing those leadership opportunities to the civilians.

The executive director will also spend time building on the wellness campaign and continuing to establish Robins as a Voluntary Protection Program safe site.

"My goal is that employers, employees and union officials will work together in a grassroots effort to make our workplace a safer, more enjoyable place to come to work every day. With a renewed emphasis on health in our Command, we want to encourage and reward healthy habits and make Robins the employer of choice. If Robins is one of the healthier, safer, more productive places to work, people will want to come here and will want their families to work here because it's a great place to work."

Dr. Butler said this assignment is exciting because it not only stretches him in a new direction by helping him learn more about sustainment and logistics, but it also allows him the opportunity to use his experience and background in acquisitions to help join the processes of the product centers with those of the air logistics centers.

"I'm in a position to help shape future life-cycle management processes by combining my expertise in product development with the expertise in product support management here. I'd like to increase the number of acquisition coded slots and increase the acquisition training in the Robins workforce," he said.

Dr. Butler earned degrees in physics, electrical engineering, and a doctorate degree in aerospace engineering from the University of Florida. He began his career working in a test wing at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla.

"Right out of college, I got to work on an infrared pod that required supersonic testing. For 5 years, I flew all over the country in the back seat of an F-4. It was a great experience, flying in jets for the Air Force as a civilian."

Dr. Butler has since served in many other assignments within the military departments. His assignments ranged from developing precision guided weapons to senior advisory roles in the Office of the Secretary of Defense.

He served as the deputy program director for the F-22 and the technical director for most of the Air Force's munitions inventory, including the Joint Direct Attack Munition and the Joint Air-to-Surface Standoff Weapon. Mr. Butler also served in the Air Force Research Laboratory and the 46th Test Wing where he was known for his expertise in electro-optical and radar guided weapons.

Dr. Butler is highly decorated with awards. He is currently the Air Force nominee for the 2008 National Public Service Award. This award recognizes individuals who exhibit the highest standards of excellence, dedication, and accomplishment over a sustained period of time, and who are creative and highly skilled career managers at all levels of public service. In September, he received his third Air Force Exemplary Civilian Service Award, presented by General Owen.

"Dr. Butler comes to us with 29 years of exemplary service," General Owen said. "He's had a long, distinguished career and we need someone with that kind of leadership ability helping us. As we face the kind of challenges we are facing today, we need the kind of leadership that he'll provide."

Dr. Butler said he loves being back in the South and among the Southeastern Conference football teams. He is looking forward to getting out in his canoe and fishing, and he enjoys playing tennis and is active in ham radio. He is involved with the Boy Scouts and enjoys giving lectures at schools on science and engineering to try to get young kids interested in pursuing math and science in college.