The head of the Assembled Chemical Weapons Alternatives (ACWA) program addressed local community members at a quarterly public meeting in Richmond, Kentucky, for the last time prior to his retirement.
“I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for your great and continued support,” said Conrad Whyne, program executive officer, ACWA. “That includes the Blue Grass Army Depot, Blue Grass Chemical Activity, all the Chemical Stockpile Emergency Preparedness Program folks, contractors and all program partners.”
Once the community, Army and Department of Defense agreed on a path forward for destroying the Kentucky chemical weapons stockpile, all partners have worked together to make it a reality, he said.
“We can work to reach that goal as long as we continue to work as a team,” he said. “That means continued transparency by ACWA and our contractor Bechtel Parsons Blue Grass, along with all the other stakeholders who have an interest in this program.”
Community leaders praised Whyne for his 33 years of work in chemical demilitarization by presenting him a plaque and other tokens of appreciation.
“Your leadership, willingness to work with us and your transparency has made a whole lot of difference,” said Doug Hindman, chair, Kentucky Chemical Demilitarization Citizens’ Advisory Commission. “We’ve got the progress to show for it.”
Whyne said he expects the commission to continue to ask the hard questions as the Blue Grass Chemical Agent-Destruction Pilot Plant moves closer to operations, scheduled to begin in 2020.