The Commander's Emergency Response Program (CERP) has played a major role in stability operations and the accomplishment of strategic objectives in Afghanistan and Iraq. The program has yielded thousands of successful projects funded by billions of appropriated dollars. However, congressional concerns over the efficiency and effectiveness of the program threaten the availability of this popular program for the next stability operation. The CERP's shortfalls include a lack of internal and external DOD coordination, unity of effort, clearly established objectives and measures of effectiveness. This paper analyzes the lessons learned over the past seven years and the efforts made to establish a common U.S. Government agency framework for conducting stability operations. It concludes that an operational art approach to applying the CERP will help the Joint Force Commander achieve the desired end state with the least amount of risk and cost.