By: Matt Craig, Director of Crane Community Support for Radius Indiana
Naval Support Activity (NSA) Crane leadership delivered the third annual “State of the Installation” address about its plans for mission growth and enhancing community partnerships during the White River Military Coordination Alliance’s (WRMCA) fourth-quarter meeting.
Leaders from NSA Crane have delivered this address to WRMCA since its inauguration in 2018. WRMCA, which includes state and local government officials, regional and local economic development officials, and Crane representatives, was formed to strengthen the relationship between NSA Crane and the surrounding communities.
The “State of the Installation” address provides an opportunity for Crane to share strategic goals, operational changes, and proposed construction projects that may impact the Alliance membership.
This year’s address was given by NSA Crane Commanding Officer CDR James L. Smith, who took command in 2020. Smith’s address included the following key updates and opportunities for community collaboration:
- Infrastructure and growth plans: Crane plans to restart construction of the Underwater Launch Test Complex in 2022. This represents a $100 million investment in infrastructure and programs with the addition of its new tenant, the Joint Hypersonics Transition Office Systems Engineering Field Activity.
- Job trends: NSWC Crane seeks to hire college graduates in technical fields. Crane Army Ammunition Activity continues to fill roles in logistics, analytics, robotics, and trades such as machinists as it works to develop and implement modernization plans.
- Trending research areas: Smith highlighted areas for potential growth in cutting-edge technology research, including advanced hypersonics and trusted microelectronics.
- Opportunities for collaboration: Smith identified opportunities to continue to explore community partnerships, intergovernmental service agreements, and educational opportunities that will build a strong talent pipeline to fill jobs.
- Joint Land Use Study (JLUS) recommendations: Implementation of JLUS recommendations will continue to create opportunities for economic development and growth within the region and state while protecting Crane’s missions.
- Indiana defense industry initiatives: Leaders from Crane will work with Indiana’s economic development arm to ensure a focus on development that will enhance Crane and the state’s ability to satisfy DoD’s critical warfighting needs.
Members of WRMCA will provide an update on the State of the Community at the Alliance’s February 2022 meeting.