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Family man with a contracting plan

ELLSWORTH AIR FORCE BASE, S.D. -- From base landscaping to office computers, nearly everything found at Ellsworth flows through the 28th Contracting Squadron.

Among the Airmen leading the charge is Staff Sgt. Chris Meyer, 28th CONS contract administrator, who provides agile contracting support and business advice to Ellsworth and combatant commanders, as he deals with base contracts on a daily basis.

As a CA, Meyer deals with many facets of the contracting process, from the preliminary overview to closing them out once completed.

"We do most of the leg work, which can be a lot," Meyer said. "However, we are proprietors of the tax payers' dollars, so we try to get the best deals in the most expedient manner."

However, Meyer is not always in the office at his computer; he also participates in evaluations of those hired to make sure they are getting the job done correctly and on time.

"We may mostly be seen behind our desks, but the evaluations are important to make sure the job is getting done on pace, so we aren't wasting tax payer money," Meyer said. 

Although he may spend a lot of time behind the desk now, that wasn't always the case.

Meyer was previously enlisted in the marines for five years before making the choice to join the Air Force.

"I enlisted for four years as an anti-tank assault team infantryman and took an extra year for a special duty with an anti-terrorism security team," Meyer said.  "It was a lot different than my current contracting job ... while some people may think it is boring, it is exactly what I wanted."

When Meyer visited the Air Force recruiter, he signed up for a job in the contracting career field, which would allow him to face new challenges. 

"I am still helping people and making sure the military's needs are met," Meyer explained. "Now my job is a lot less life threatening, and I can spend more time with my family. That was the biggest reason for the switch. I didn't want my kids to not know who I was, or worst case scenario, not know me at all if I didn't make it back."

Whether he is at the office supporting the mission, or at home supporting his family, Meyers says he could not be happier with how he is serving.