OFFUTT AIR FORCE BASE, Neb. --
After just 60 days and a mere $30,000 investment, the 55th Wing Operations Center officially opened its door for business during a ribbon cutting ceremony at the 55th Intelligence Support Squadron May 1.
The WOC is now the central hub for wing-level situational awareness on all of its intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance assets, as well as its electronic warfare assets, supporting combatant commanders around the world on a daily basis.
“This was a complete wing effort,” said Col. David Berg, 55th Wing vice commander. “Across the board everyone contributed to this from ops, maintenance, communications, mission support and our national guard teammates.”
The idea of a WOC came from the 55th ISS leadership team as they sought to consolidate several disparate C2 and ISR management functions across the wing into a single office.
“WOCs are long-established entities within the Air Force’s C2 construct,” said Col. Joe Santucci, 55th Operations Group commander. “Having a WOC allows us to standardize with other 25th Air Force wings and more effectively monitor, track and integrate our assigned capabilities and resources.”
Prior to the WOC’s standup, efforts to conduct command and control of ISR and EW assets as well as manage the processing, exploitation and dissemination of data was hindered with so many different functions being executed across multiple wing organizations.
“The splitting of C2 and management functions resulted in degraded operational awareness and inefficient use of manpower and resources,” said Lt Col. Matthew Burns, 55th WOC director. “The WOC now consolidates, synergizes and streamlines this process.”
In addition, the WOC now also provides reach-back requirement management, advanced analysis and a conduit for higher headquarters requests. It also serves as the focal point for preparing and disseminating classified weekly impact reports.
“Prior to standing this up, we would process our information and stove pipe it out,” Berg said. “With this new ops center, we can now collect, process and digest everything right here and push it out quickly to users for actionable results.”
A five year plan for the WOC includes building renovations as well as upgrading the communications infrastructure, which will allow the wing to expand the WOC mission set even further.
“We’re considering co-locating the WOC with wing weapons and tactics, creating a cyber operations cell to integrate cyber defense efforts with our ISR and EW operations and possibly integrating tactics analysis studies elements,” Burns said.
At this point, anything and everything that can help the wing support its end user is on the table.
“As the role of our WOC matures and additional resources become available, we would like to expand its scope,” Santucci said. “These upgrades will help us to advance the chief’s vision on multi-domain command and control.”