CMSAF visits Tinker AFB Airmen

  • Published
  • By Brandice J. O'Brien
  • 72nd Air Base Wing
The Air Force's top enlisted Airman came here Jan. 5 through 6 to speak to Airmen about being ready for the joint/coalition fight, building resiliency and developing Airmen.

Chief Master of the Air Force James. A. Roy visited areas of the base and met with officers, chiefs and Airmen.

"There are a lot of mission partners at this one installation, and every Airman I talked to said he is excited about being here and the roles that he is doing," said Chief Roy.

"As I visited with the community downtown, I saw it is very supportive of Tinker (Air Force Base) and all of its Airmen," the chief said. "As a senior leader in this organization, it's great to have bases where people feel at home."

Airman 1st Class Codi Wallach, Tinker AFB's junior enlisted council president, was among several Airmen invited to have lunch with the chief.

"Chief Roy ... brought up some good questions to ask yourself before you join a professional organization such as, 'What does the organization provide for the community?' and 'Why be a part of that organization?,'" Airman Wallach said. "Chief Roy helped me realize that professional organizations on Tinker help make a huge difference on the impact of the base and the surrounding communities."

A positive impact and involvement in the community is very important, the chief said. After all, it's not easy being in today's military, particularly when there's a war being fought and the technology is far more advanced than when he joined in 1982.

"It was a different era almost 30 years ago," he said. "We were fighting the Cold War, and it was definitely a different time of history. It was one in which we did a lot of preparation through exercises and training.

"Today's Airmen are receiving first-hand combat experience very, very early in their careers," Chief Roy said. "To me, that's a huge challenge. That is going to formulate the way they lead in the future, and we have to give them the other elements of leadership -- education and training -- to couple with that combat experience."

Using what he called "pillars" within education and development training, Chief Roy said those methods will build Airmen of the future. Additionally, it's important for Airmen to balance real-world mission with training.

The chief said, excluding deployed Airmen, there are more than 160,000 Airmen associated with combatant commands affecting battle spaces overseas, even while stationed at their home base. As a result, Airmen need to know their roles are appreciated.

"You are important to the overall defense of our nation," Chief Roy said. "Thank you and your families for everything you do and endure."