HomeNewsArticle Display

AF and civic leaders work to build stronger bases

Secretary of the Air Force Heather Wilson and Air Force Vice Chief of Staff Gen. Stephen Wilson listen to civic leaders during an Air Force Civic Leader Conference at Joint Base Andrews, Md., Feb. 15, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Wayne A. Clark)

Secretary of the Air Force Heather Wilson and Air Force Vice Chief of Staff Gen. Stephen Wilson listen to civic leaders during an Air Force Civic Leader Conference at Joint Base Andrews, Md., Feb. 15, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Wayne A. Clark)

Secretary of the Air Force Heather Wilson and Air Force Vice Chief of Staff Gen. Stephen Wilson listen to civic leaders during an Air Force Civic Leader Conference at Joint Base Andrews, Md., Feb. 15, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Wayne A. Clark)

Secretary of the Air Force Heather Wilson and Air Force Vice Chief of Staff Gen. Stephen Wilson listen to civic leaders during an Air Force Civic Leader Conference at Joint Base Andrews, Md., Feb. 15, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Wayne A. Clark)

Secretary of the Air Force Heather Wilson and Air Force Vice Chief of Staff Gen. Stephen Wilson listen to civic leaders during an Air Force Civic Leader Conference at Joint Base Andrews, Md., Feb. 15, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Wayne A. Clark)

Secretary of the Air Force Heather Wilson and Air Force Vice Chief of Staff Gen. Stephen Wilson listen to civic leaders during an Air Force Civic Leader Conference at Joint Base Andrews, Md., Feb. 15, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Wayne A. Clark)

WASHINGTON (AFNS) -- Air Force civic leaders from across the U.S. traveled to Joint Base Andrews, Maryland, to engage directly with Air Force senior leaders on the service’s top installation and communities priorities at the Air Force Civic Leader Conference held Feb. 13-15, 2018.

“The most important thing for us when we look at bases is the mission -- we are values driven and mission focused,” said Secretary of the Air Force Heather Wilson. “What matters most to our Airmen in regards to their communities is quality of life, which includes world class schools and reciprocity for licensure.”

Civic leaders agreed, working together is paramount in building a strong partnership, in order to increase mission efficiency and mitigate the challenges Airmen face outside of the workplace.

“Mutually beneficial collaboration to support key community and base initiatives utilizes combined resources more efficiently and produces meaningful results in a much timelier manner,” said Brad Hegeman, chief of staff of the Air Force civic leader from Arkansas.

In most cases, the quality of life standards for Airmen and their dependents have a direct impact on the mission, including one of the Air Force’s biggest challenges, the pilot shortage.

According to the U.S. Air Force Optimize Aircrew Retention Crowdsourcing Pulse #1 survey, 62 percent of 2,620 Airmen agreed improved school opportunities for children around military facilities could have a positive impact on aircrew retention.

“Airmen care a lot about the education their children receive,” said Wilson. “The base commander and the local school district must work together to meet the needs of their community and become a base of choice for Airmen because they’ve heard that the schools are fantastic.”
Along with quality of the schools available to Airmen and their families, following a permanent change of station, spouses face difficulties with the length of time it takes to transfer professional licensures and certifications between states and the out-of-pocket expenses those transfers accumulate.

“This is an important issue for the Air Force and the Department of Labor is also addressing it because it inhibits the mobility of the workforce as a whole,” said Wilson. “Reciprocity matters a lot to the families of our Airmen.”

Wilson encouraged the civic leaders to focus on strengthening relationships at the local level and help new wing commanders.

“We are trying to delegate a lot more authority and give the local commanders a lot more latitude to get after their mission,” she said. “You can expect from us a lot more local control, a lot more authority at the wing commander level without having to deal with too much bureaucracy above them so they can get after the problems that are at the highest priority in their communities.”

The multi-day conference also provided a strategic perspective to the civic leaders, something they said will help to build better support for Airmen within their sphere of influence.

“This allows for much broader mission support… a better understanding of unique needs for Air Force families within the community builds that strong relationship which allows everyone to work as partners in solving shared problems,” said Murray Viser, Headquarters Air Force civic leader from Louisiana.

Engage

Facebook Twitter
RT @AFResearchLab: Our 711th Human Performance Wing is studying Airmen's sleeping habits to improve performance and readiness to further th…
.@NellisAFB Airmen help prep an @AusAirForce C-17 Globemaster III to receive fire suppressant needed to aid in the… https://t.co/fRiXN5lNh0
RT @USSOCOM: SOF Truth III: Special Operations Forces cannot be mass produced. It takes years to train operational units to the level of pr…
Comptrollers from @TeamTyndall received the Gen. Larry O. Spencer Special Acts and Services Award for assisting mor… https://t.co/TIclfKmU2B
RT @F22DemoTeam: Everyone has a history. Some have a legacy. We are excited to introduce Maj. Joshua ‘Cabo’ Gunderson, commander and pilot…
A KC-135 and three F-16s from @EdwardsAFB conduct a flyover above @levisstadium during the #NFCChampionship. Fly… https://t.co/0K7GcYO1Ia
RT @AirNatlGuard: "We can always count on the training, professionalism and drive of every Airmen at the @176thWing and the Alaska Rescue C…
RT @LukeAFB: Starting the week off with a F-16 slow-mo! ✈ #slowmomonday #aviation #jets #f16 #fighterjet #usaf #sunrise https://t.co/toXXl…
RT @AETCommand: Airmen from the 29th AMU check over the first MQ-9 Reaper to be transported through ferry flight, Jan. 8, 2020, on @Holloma
RT @DeptofDefense: The cold won’t slow down the @usairforce! The Air Force is working with the @usarmyccdc to test cold weather gear and e…
RT @USAFCENT: GROUND SUPPORT | USAF Airmen assigned to the 379th AEMS worked alongside the 746th EAS to load cargo onto & launch a C-130 at…
RT @USAFHealth: #DidYouKnow, Air Force Expeditionary Medicine brings leading-edge medicine directly into battle providing injured personnel…
As he served, let us serve. Happy Martin Luther King Jr. Day. https://t.co/SuE0D4UAnI
RT @AirNatlGuard: "We talk about lining ourselves up with our sister services and joint efforts to make sure we accomplish our mission; the…
RT @AFResearchLab: The year is 1947. The @usairforce officially broke the sound barrier with the Bell X-1 aircraft. This incredible feat w…
RT @theF35JPO: Congratulations to the @AusAirForce for completing their #F35 training mission at @LukeAFB! 🇦🇺 ⚡ Learn more 🔗 https://t.co/2…
RT @CENTCOM: A French Rafale conducts nighttime air refueling with a U.S. Air Force KC-10 Extender assigned to the 380th Air Expeditionary…
RT @DeptofDefense: Jumping from a plane becomes a big step toward friendship. 301 soldiers and airmen from @USArmyReserve, @usairforce, and…
Explosive Disposal Ordnance (EOD) Airmen are often assigned to some of the most dangerous missions and perform tact… https://t.co/xYc9Ip5psn
Start this year by supporting your #Airmen in their pursuit of #resiliency. Learn about common triggers of invisibl… https://t.co/6gJSfJKvcK