Commentary Search

  • My Greatest Decision

    A decision I made at 18 years old in a quick moment of rebellion has turned out to be the best decision of my life. As I neared the end of my junior year of high school, without any plans for college, my mom would begin what I would describe as “nagging” me with questions of my plans after graduation. I jokingly mentioned the military to see her reaction. Since her father and brother both fought in past wars, it upset her to think that one day that could be her daughter too. Of course from that point on, every time someone would inquire about my future, my response would be, “I’m joining the military.”
  • Failure is fine

    “Perfection is the standard; there is no room for incomplete knowledge or substandard performance.” This phrase resonates with the men and women who have pulled intercontinental ballistic missile crew duty, performed work as a missile security forces troop or worked in the world of missile maintenance. These individuals understand the idea that
  • You're not alone

    One of Rihanna’s 2011 hits blared throughout the room as I lay on a cold, hardened steel surgical table. An anxious nurse looked down upon me.“What type of music do you like?” she asked eagerly.“Well …,” I forced out as if as a sudden urge to sleep fell over me. Trying not to be rude, I continued, “I like a lot of different types of …,” I muttered
  • Diversity: Our National Character

    In 1946 my grandfather, Johnnie Thompkins, joined the U.S. Marine Corps at a time when black recruits were trained at separate facilities. He went to boot camp at Camp Montford Point, in Jacksonville, North Carolina, where black Marine recruits were trained from 1942-1949. These first “black Marines” are now referred to as the Montford Point Marines and are part of the rich history of the Corps, similar to how we embrace our Air Force history through the Tuskegee Airmen.
  • The Air Force Wingman Culture

    Culture is defined as the behaviors and norms found throughout society. It is the set of customs, traditions, and values of a society or community, such as an ethnic group, a nation or a force.  I am an American Airman.Wingman, Leader, Warrior.I will never leave an Airman behind,I will never falter,And I WILL NOT FAILThat is our culture. We are
  • Change Management

    As you follow the news coming out of Washington, D.C, you have likely observed that there are a great number of changes coming to the Air Force and the Department of Defense as a whole.  While we are seeing significant shifts in policy directives and how we do business, this level of change seems to be more significant than in recent memory. Every
  • Diversity for Creativity: Deliberately Cultivating Innovation

    As a squadron commander in today’s evolving space enterprise, I am frequently challenged to “push the envelope,” “go fast,” “think big,” and “drive innovation.” But how do you balance speed and lofty thoughts while pointing toward innovation? One key: building diverse teams.Developing creative solutions to emerging problems is exciting business!
  • Special Needs Dependents

    There are many military members that have a dependent (or dependents) with special needs.  “Special needs” is a term that usually describes someone that has a physical, emotional, behavioral or learning disability. Sometimes it is not just children born with disabilities, but can also be an unfortunate accident or debilitating occurrence later in
  • Wing Embraces CSAF’s Vision with New Flight Leadership Course

    In August 2016, Gen. David Goldfein wrote a letter to Airmen emphasizing squadrons as “the beating heart of the United States Air Force; our most essential team. We succeed or fail in our missions at the squadron-level because that is where we develop, train, and build Airmen…” Developing, training, and building Airmen should start on day one, but
  • The evolution of U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity program and the role of the Air Force

    During the spring of 1963, the world watched as demonstrators, particularly in deep southern states in the U.S., were beaten, attacked by police dogs, sprayed with high-pressure water hoses, and then arrested and jailed. The sight of this kind of brutality against peaceful demonstrators, including children, outraged Americans at home and tarnished