SecAF visits Goodfellow Air Force Base

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Zachary Heimbuch
  • 17th Training Wing Public Affairs

Secretary of the Air Force Frank Kendall visited Goodfellow Air Force Base to observe base operations and meet with joint service members assigned to the 17th Training Wing, April 4.

During his visit, Kendall got a firsthand look at the Joint All Domain Exercise known as JADE FORGE.

This exercise features a simulated joint deployment area to provide a training environment for intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities. JADE FORGE serves as an extension of Forward Operating Base Sentinel, empowering joint forces to enhance their skills and capabilities to operate in austere and contested environments.

“As our security challenges continue to evolve, so has our training curriculum and exercise venues,” Kendall said. “I was impressed by the professionalism and skill of the service members immersed in this emerging system—and I am confident our ISR professionals are prepared for their future service on behalf of the nation.”

Kendall also toured the Louis F. Garland Department of Defense Fire Academy. The DoD Fire Academy is home to the Fire Protection Apprentice Course and hosts numerous advanced fire protection courses. It provides training to all components of the DoD, including uniformed and civilian members, and trains students from allied and partner nations. The academy prepares firefighters to handle a wide range of emergencies including aircraft crashes, hazardous materials incidents and structural fires.

“Goodfellow [AFB] has the distinct honor of training all of the firefighters in the Department of Defense,” Kendall said. “The graduates of the Fire Academy are our own first responders, who rush when teammates are in peril or when disaster strikes. The skills developed here and honed in the field are critical to the Joint Force.”

Kendall met with service members from multiple branches, as well as DoD civilians, and conducted a question-and-answer session.

“The most important action a leader can take is to listen,” Kendall said. “Being able to hear the concerns of Airmen, Guardians, Marines and joint teammates is invaluable. These two-way conversations help me to understand where we’ve made progress in supporting our force and where there is still work to be done.”