HomeNewsCommentariesDisplay

Introspection

Command Chief Master Sgt. Jack Johnson Jr. is the Supreme Allied Command Transformation command senior enlisted leader at Norfolk, Va. (NATO photo)

Command Chief Master Sgt. Jack Johnson Jr. is the Supreme Allied Command Transformation command senior enlisted leader at Norfolk, Va. (NATO photo)

NORFOLK, Va. (AFNS) -- We were all created different. We think differently, perceive things differently and interpret success and failure through very different lenses. At each person’s unique period in life, they begin to look back, wondering if they truly made a difference. For many, that difference can only be defined by one’s self, regardless of achievements, big or small. The “should have”, “could have” and “would have” perspectives sometimes occupy our thoughts. During this sometimes lonesome period, even the highest achievers and strongest leaders also go through a period of introspection. Introspection has such a powerful impact on a person’s life, not just the wise, but everyone -- even our lowest ranking Airmen or family members -- all have stories awaiting the best seller’s list. As our great Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Mark A. Welsh III has said, “Every Airman has a story.”

Over my 53 continuous years with the Air Force, first as the son of a great senior NCO, and now as the longest serving enlisted Airman on active duty, to which I owe Welsh and Chief Master Sgt. of the Air Force James A. Cody my deepest gratitude, I've seen a lot of historic advances. It is through my own personal and professional introspection that I see many of our Air Force’s greatest attributes of yesteryear and today being centered on its promises to the American public, sometimes despite tremendous odds. Through the diligence and dedication of our total force, we have always been successful.

Those attributes and/or actions developed during the 1960s and 1970s, in my view, were about building our force with the best sustainable force to fight the current and future wars. We addressed warfighting, sustainment, readiness, quality of life and training and education, with the strategy to win indecisively. Not one Airman, nor his or her family members, was not aware of what alert status we were in, whether they were overseas or stateside, in church service or at a base matinee -- they knew!

The 1980s and 1990s brought significant change, paved by all those professional service members serving before us and some with us today. The Berlin Wall came down and America began to reinvest precious assets elsewhere, sometimes contrary to the advice of senior Air Force leaders. History will determine if that calculus was right, but our Air Force never took its eyes off of America, Americans, or American interest, as witnessed in the multitude of named and unnamed operations, campaigns and task forces. We perfected the art of an expeditionary force with our speed, agility, flexibility and responsiveness being second to none. Our battle dress uniform was often mistaken for other services back then, but our objectives were successful and our honor remained humble to the American people.

Today’s Airmen are well versed on the contribution of being an expeditionary Airman, and so are their families. Former Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. “Norty” Schwartz once said, “The importance of an Airman is not measured by their proximity to the target.” That said, every Airman in the total force is important in today’s fight and so are their families. The adversaries today believe they enjoy something more challenging than experienced by our forefathers and that is asymmetrical surprise, cheap cyber-attacks, strategic communications and hybrid warfare. Those adversaries have not read the last word of our motto -- win, and in order to do this we must never forget that every Airman is important and every talent is needed.

One of our greatest focuses today is on our weapon system … our human capital. Although transparent to some, tremendous efforts have been underway by our leaders in addressing fair and impartial inclusion, leveraging cultural strengths in specialties while balancing the force through gender and racial initiatives to name just a few -- all are solution and results focused. There are no smoking guns and leaders are transparent in saying we have much work to do. We are a reflection of the citizens we serve, and honing in on all talent, regardless of what you look like, are vital to remaining the world’s greatest Air Force.

Looking back over the past several decades, we've grown as an Air Force, unmatched by no other. As an American Airman, whose introspect has made him a better person, I am mindful of the great opportunities my Air Force has given me, because through opportunities came success for me and the Airmen I stand side by side with! Aim high … fly, fight and win!

Engage

Twitter
Hear why this #Airman chose to get vaccinated. @SecAFOfficial directed the COVID-19 vaccine implementation guideli… https://t.co/154QECoeXk
Twitter
RT @AETCommand: Doing frequent mental health check-ins could make a big difference in building resiliency. Promote wellness within yourself…
Twitter
RT @GenCQBrownJr: Every time I look at "Wings Through Time” by Robert Emerson Bell it’s a constant reminder that the ability to accelerate…
Twitter
RT @UnderSecAF: If you need help or know someone who needs help - text 838255 or call 1-800-273-8255 to reach the Military Crisis Line. Let…
Twitter
RT @US_TRANSCOM: A @usairforce KC-135 refuels a B-2 Spirit in @US_EUCOM during a bomber task force mission.Tankers fuel the required reach…
Twitter
RT @SecAFOfficial: A senior leader message during #SuicidePreventionMonth: "You are our greatest strength and the beating heart of our Air…
Twitter
RT @SecAFOfficial: Congratulations to the @USAirForce’s 12 Outstanding #Airmen of the Year on earning recognition as exemplary performers i…
Twitter
RT @RealAFOSI: 1/ #DidYouKnow Sept. is Insider Threat Awareness Month? No environment is immune from the threat posed by trusted insiders.…
Twitter
RT @GenCQBrownJr: Sharene and I take the caring and well-being of our Airmen and their families very seriously. Thank you @AirForceAssoc fo…
Twitter
RT @GenCQBrownJr: Everyone wants to make their mark on the world. But why make just one? https://t.co/g1iX4pzU9b
Twitter
10 years have passed since #DontAskDontTell was repealed. @UnderSecAF Gina Ortiz Jones celebrated the milestone by… https://t.co/i1kTNvykzM
Twitter
RT @GenCQBrownJr: It’s going to take all of our Airmen, Active-duty, Reserve and Guard to secure this nation’s future. https://t.co/4P3CUiQ…
Twitter
RT @UnderSecAF: A few years ago, only two small businesses joined us at AFA--this year we have 40+. @AFWERX works with these companies ever…
Twitter
RT @SecAFOfficial: SecAF is meeting with defense industry leaders today during the @AirForceAssoc’s #ASC21 events. In his #OneTeamOneFigh
Twitter
RT @GenCQBrownJr: Our rate of change needs to increase. We must move with a sense of urgency today in order to rise to the challenges of to…
Twitter
.@AETCommand is working to remove barriers in the pilot candidate selection process. Learn more about the changes… https://t.co/ANcqVRdsNz
Twitter
.@UnderSecAF Gina Ortiz Jones spoke on the anniversary of DADT... https://t.co/zZYqHOTp8V
Twitter
RT @SecAFOfficial: "We are in a national, strategic, long-term contest with a formidable adversary and what you do every day is important t…
Facebook
The newest Air Force Podcast recently dropped. Listen to a small snippet of CMSAF Kaleth O. Wright talk with Staff Sgt. New about resiliency. Listen to the entire podcast on Youtube: https://go.usa.gov/xpnAD or Subscribe to The Air Force Podcast on iTunes: https://podcasts.apple.com/podcast/the-air-force-podcast/id1264107694?mt=2
Facebook
Our mantra, "Always ready!" It's the spirit we fly by! #B2Tuesday
Facebook
Need some motivation to get your week started off right? Listen as CMSAF Kaleth O. Wright weighs in...
Facebook
The U.S. Air Force Academy gives its cadets some unique opportunities. Ride along one of this opportunities.
Facebook
A United States Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker refuels an F-22 Raptor over northern Iraq, Nov. 6, 2019. U.S. Central Command operations deter adversaries and demonstrate support for allies and partners in the region. (Video by Staff Sgt. Daniel Snider)
Facebook
Although the Silver Star is the third-highest military medal, it's not given often. Today, TSgt Cody Smith was the 49th Special Tactics Airman to receive this medal since Sept. 11th, 2001. Read more of TSgt Smith's amazing story: https://www.airforcespecialtactics.af.mil/News/Article-Display/Article/2024815/special-tactics-airman-battled-through-injuries-awarded-silver-star/fbclid/IwAR2LZWwx1VHdTnQe39rIEBOuJS_0JvMQBBGt7I-E6zsxxn-Lx9387yu43Bc/ Cannon Air Force Base Air Force Special Operations Command United States Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) U.S. Department of Defense (DoD)
Facebook
Tune in as our Air Force musicians along with other military musicians are awarded the National Medal of Arts.
Facebook
Like Us
Twitter
1,378,205
Follow Us