Monte Kapec Achieves Senior Executive Service
After more than 26 years with the Army Medical Department as both a commissioned Army officer and civilian, Deputy Chief of Staff of Procurement for the U.S. Army Medical Command and Office of the Surgeon General Lamont "Monte" Kapec has been selected for the distinguished honor of a position with the Senior Executive Service.
Kapec began his career in Army medicine desiring experience like most college graduates. With a bachelor's degree in environmental science from Kutztown University in Pennsylvania, he aspired to become an environmental science officer for the Army. However, due to the Army's overflow at the time, he became a medical platoon leader where experiences such as the exposure to a sergeant's wife's paralysis helped shape his view of the Army family.
After leading a medical platoon, Kapec continued on the U.S. Army Medical Department path and began his career with the U.S. Army Medical Research and Materiel Command (then the Medical Research and Development Command) at the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Chemical Defense, and was later selected as former Commanding General Maj. Gen. Russ Zajtchuk's aid-de-camp.
Working alongside Zajtchuk gave Kapec the Army medicine insight that loss of life due to trauma could be prevented through advances and innovations in battlefield medicine.
After an assignment at the Medical Advanced Technology Management Office (now the Telemedicine and Advanced Technology Research Center) Kapec went to the 147th Medical Logistics Battalion to work as a medical supply officer, which ultimately piqued his interest in contracting. Managing a medical supply account allowed him to examine all processes of acquiring medical supplies and determine those methods that worked well and those that could improve.
During a two-year contracting internship at Walter Reed Army Medical Center, Kapec experienced "true patient care contracting," especially during 9/11 when he assisted with contracting support for the Pentagon.
Kapec served in his most recent role with the USAMRMC as the principal assistant responsible for contracting as he simultaneously began in his new capacity as deputy chief of staff of procurement for the MEDCOM and the OTSG.
He noted that many of these assignments have made him a product of the USAMRMC.
"I really believe in what we do in Army medicine. My view of this is largely centered on what my experience has been at the USAMRMC," said Kapec. "The seeds that lead to our products that take care of our Soldiers, family members, beneficiaries and retirees come from the terrific science and research carried out here."
Kapec said his belief in Army medicine drove his aspiration in contracting.
"What I believe happens when we put our touches on contracts at all different levels is when those contracts are put in place, they lead to things that change lives, and we perhaps don't always get to see that," said Kapec.
Kapec believes as a result of not typically seeing the outcomes of contracts, staff can easily become discouraged in their work.
"Contracting is a very complex and technical profession. For that reason, it's kind of easy to lose grips on what's important," said Kapec. "So keeping in mind the rules we have to maintain, it's also important to maintain a message and a vision for taking care of people that truly do make a difference. That way, when we don't see the actual event, we still know it's happening."
The key to maintaining that vision and focus, Kapec said, is passion. Kapec's passion for taking care of people led him from medical platoon leader to the SES. His personal goals blended with the mission goals he developed throughout his career, and he realized how important the health care mission was to him.
Apart from spending his free time with his wife of 16 years and his two young children, Kapec takes any opportunity he has to work on his doctorate's degree in organizational leadership and learning at the University of Pennsylvania. This degree will accompany his M.A. in acquisition and procurement management, MSA in health service administration and MBA.
"Maintaining that vision of helping people helps us to not take our work for granted, which really drives passion," said Kapec. "The more passion we can carry out every day, the more of a value we can provide to our military and to the general public."