SHAW AIR FORCE AIR BASE, S.C. --
Integrity First. Excellence In All We Do. Service Before Self. These are the Air Force core values and they mold who Airmen are from the inside out.
Tech. Sgt. Kelli Floyd, 20th Contracting Squadron contracting officer, strives to emulate excellence in all she does.
After over a decade of military service, Floyd received an Unlimited Contracting Warrant, the highest warrant a contracting Airman can attain.
“The federal government puts trust in you, so you are warranted to enter an agreement with an outside agency to provide goods, services, infrastructure or anything you can think of,” said Floyd. “If you got it, we bought it.”
Her first warrants were worth $150,000, $2 million and then $5 million. The last warrant ability someone can attain is “unlimited,” which has to be given by a major command.
“I had excellent leaders who had more faith in me than I had in myself,” said Floyd. “It truly takes a village to build someone up like that, because it’s 50% knowledge and 50% being able to process and recall that knowledge in a high pressure situation.”
After graduating a 10-week course, she attended mock boards to answer scenario-based questions regarding possible large dollar contracting situations. The real board was with Air Combat Command.
“I received the warrant on Aug. 28 and my daughter was born Sept. 9, so there was pressure,” said Floyd. “I had been studying and practicing, so the last thing I wanted to do was go on maternity leave before the actual board. I set that goal and I cut it pretty close, but I can say I did it.”
Before that, Randall May, 20th CONS business operations director, was the only UCW holder, meaning he was the only person at Shaw that could approve any contract over $5 million.
“There are few enlisted holders in the Air Force, so her accomplishment speaks highly of her expertise,” said May. “It is a tremendous benefit in our ability to execute our mission for the 20th Fighter Wing.”
Only nine enlisted Airmen have reached that level and six of them are senior noncommissioned officers.
“We’re starting to think about contracts that the base needs and, now that we have two UCW holders, it’s more feasible to put these long-term contracts in place to support years of Shaw sustainment,” said Floyd. “I recently returned from maternity leave and I already have $100 million worth of work to do.”
Floyd’s new officer and civilian dominated qualification will further boost the 20th CONS ability to provide better resources for Team Shaw Airmen.
Floyd said it is hard work that pays off. It is not the rank, or lack of, holding Airmen back.
“I really feel like I've found what I want to be when I grow up,” said Floyd. “I’ve found what I want to do for the rest of my life and I don’t think there’s anything more exciting than that.”