Fort Shafter, Hawaii – Financial officers from units in the Indo-Pacific area of operation to include the 25th Infantry Division, 8th Theater Sustainment Command and 94th Army Air and Missile Defense Command se gathered at U.S. Pacific Command (USARPAC) for a Funding Symposium at Fort Shafter, Hawaii, July 25-27, 2022. The Finance Symposium is an annual event that helps facilitate awareness of the financial status of the U.S. military and the operational advantage of knowing how to properly utilize each of the financial capabilities provided to each unit during the exercise.
The financial symposium is held at different locations in the United States; this year the symposium was held in the beautiful state of Hawaii. The theme for this year’s symposium was “Resource the Way Forward Across the Indo-Pacific, the World’s Most Important Theater”. The symposium is a place where finance professionals can discuss different aspects of the Corps of Finance, including military budget allocation and how money is transferred overseas during a mission. Participants also discussed the different possibilities of the future of military funding as it relates to cryptocurrency.
During the finance symposium, a ceremony was held to recognize government soldiers and civilians who assisted families during the Red Hill water contamination crisis as part of Task Force Ohana. “I personally thank each of the more than 40 individuals who have assisted service members and their families in Red Hill, Hawaii.” Said Cindy Garcia, assistant director of Indianapolis Defense Finance and Accounting, “Today we are here to recognize you for your efforts to help approximately 1,544 people,” Garcia said.
The symposium fostered dialogue that touched on different aspects of the Finance Corps, including procurement, tax law, theater banking, and cash management. For each of these topics, speakers from a different financial unit briefed the audience who were physically present in the conference room and those who attended online.
All of the speakers discussed challenges in the financial body and made recommendations on how to improve processes that could address those challenges. One of the significant challenges facing the Corps is the loss of personnel. One unit in particular spoke of fears of losing a detachment and the need to shift the workload to other detachments in the region to mitigate a degradation in client support capabilities. Some of the experts present educated the audience on indoor banking and cash management.
This was an important event, not only for the financial professionals in attendance, but for all soldiers, civilians and family members of the United States Army Pacific.