USAMRMC Says Goodbye to Chief of Staff, After 29 years in Service
Twenty nine years and nine months flies by when you're having fun.
Col. Jeffrey Unger, U.S. Army Medical Research and Materiel Command chief of staff, originally from New Jersey, joined the Army in an unconventional way. Someone asked him if he was interested in an ROTC scholarship while he was in college.
Unger said he didn't think he was military material but he applied anyway. To his surprise, he was awarded the scholarship.
The hard part ... telling his parents.
It was a few years after the Vietnam War had ended. His mom wasn't thrilled about his decision at the time.
"Now, my parents think it's amazing that I made the Army a career," said Unger.
His military career just within MRMC includes two tours with the U.S. Army Medical Materiel Agency, the U.S. Army U.S. Army Medical Materiel Center-Europe, 6th Medical Logistics Management Center formerly known as TMMMC and headquarters.
Unger said by being the chief of staff he can put the whole puzzle together from the research side to the materiel side.
"As a lifecycle manager, I see everything from the beginning to the end. I see how we develop a product all the way to the acquisition to fielding to retiring it," said Unger.
Tami Allnutt, Command Support coordinator, said she was a little concerned when Col. Jeffrey Unger was going to be her new boss at the U.S. Army Medical Materiel Agency because she didn't know much about him but after he took command she realized she had nothing to worry about. "Over the years he has become a genuine friend, said Allnutt, "I wish him happiness and health." Allnutt recalled one of the funny moments they had when Unger dressed up as Scooby Doo on Halloween. "I walked him around various offices," said Allnutt.
He has been a great mentor and I will remember all of the things he taught me including how to say 'no' politely, recalls Lt. Col. Bernadette Fobbs, deputy chief of staff for Personnel/Troop commander.
"I will remember his leadership and the simplicity on how he led with an open mind," said Lt. Col. Ray Laurel, secretary to the General Staff.
Unger's official last day in the Army is April 1. He will retire and transition into civilian life.
He is a 1983 graduate of the University of Miami, Florida, and he is a 1991 graduate of Troy State University where he received an MBA. He is also a 2005 graduate of ICAF where he received an MS in Strategic Resource Management. He was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in the Medical Service Corps with a detail to Infantry.
He said he has had a wonderful professional life. "I will miss the people and the mission. The AMEDD is a proud organization," said Unger.
After retirement, Unger plans to start another career.
"I'm interested in starting my own company in information technology management or do some strategy management consulting," said Unger.
He said his family has been supportive about his retirement. He also said he knows the transition will be a difficult one but he is positive about the future.