Tag Archives: core values

Military Appreciation Month: Spotlight on an Airman Week 3

by 48th Fighter Wing Public Affairs

Editor’s note: May is Military Appreciation Month, and we’ll highlight a different Airman and his or her job once per week for this month. We’re truly grateful for the hard work each Airman puts forth each day, and every job — big or small– contributes to the U.S. Air Force being the best Air Force in the world. Is there a military member you appreciate? Tell us in the comments below.

Tech. Sgt. Charmaine Reed is the flight service center noncommissioned officer in charge for the 48th Logistics Readiness Squadron, Royal Air Force Lakenheath, England. She’s been in the Air Force for more than 13 years. Her hobbies include scrapbooking, nail art, making diaper cakes and cooking.


How does she portray Service Before Self?
Reed is always willing to share knowledge with the Airmen. She continuously tries to improve processes and doesn’t mind working extra hours to complete the mission.

Why did you join the Air Force?
I’m from a large family, and staying in St. Louis wasn’t an option for me. I’ve always wanted to travel and experience different cultures. Most importantly, the Air Force has allowed me to be a part of what makes America great.

How does your job support the mission of the 48th Fighter Wing?
We support the mission by managing due-in maintenance accounts and ensuring repairable assets are expedited to the back shops or returned to the supply pipeline for other repair facilities.

What drives you as an Airman?
I’m driven by knowing that I’m protecting the freedom and way of life enjoyed by my fellow Americans.

What skills do you possess that set you apart from other Airmen in your shop?
I’m always willing to learn new skills, and I don’t mind putting in the extra-long hours to complete the mission.

What has been your favorite place to travel in England/Europe, or where would you like to travel to?
I love being immersed in other cultures and experiencing them firsthand. Each spot I get the pleasure to explore holds a uniqueness that I can’t compare to any other.

PHOTO: Tech. Sgt. Charmaine Reed (right) teaches Airman 1st Class Eric Licatovich about incoming packaging slip procedures at Royal Air Force Lakenheath, England, May 15, 2014. Reed, 48th Logistics Readiness Squadron flight service center NCO in charge, was nominated for a Liberty Spotlight because she displays the core value of Service Before Self. Licatovich is a 48th LRS flight service center apprentice. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Dawn M. Weber/Released)

20 photos that will make you fall in love with the Air Force

By 1st Lt Tori Hight
Air Force Public Affairs Agency

It’s no secret that the men and women of the Air Force are passionate about their service — and why shouldn’t they be? The Air Force is amaaa-zing. With facinating missions, sleek aircraft and technology and super talented Airmen, it’s pretty hard to find something you truly hate about the Air Force. Whether or not you’ve enjoyed your time as an Airman, you’ll appreciate the photos we’ve (the Air Force Social Media Team) compiled for you here. They’ll make you fall in love with the Air Force all over again.

Here are five of the many reasons why we love the Air Force:

1. The sacrifice our brave men and women make every day

An Airman meets his son for the first time.







PHOTO: Lt. Col. Philip Wielhouwer, 74th Fighter Squadron commander, is pictured here meeting his three-week old son, Ryan, for the first time at Moody Air Force Base, Ga., Aug. 9, 2009. We all know fellow Airmen who have sacrificed precious time with their families for the Air Force mission.

2. The camraderie we share with our fellow Airmen and sister services

An Airman participates in joint service training.






PHOTO: Who else can you punch and still be friends with? All joking aside, our Airmen share a special bond with our fellow military members and each other. If you’ve ever served in the military – you know what we’re talking about.

3. We have some pretty cool aircraft and technology

A JTAC contacts a U.S. Navy F/A-18






PHOTO: This is just epic.

4. Integrity, service and excellence

Airmen lay flags for Veterans Day.






Airmen honor those who have made the ultimate sacrifice and embrace the Air Force herritage, while looking forward to what the future brings.

5. We sleep better at night knowing our Airmen keep watch
A pararescueman scans his sector over Afghanistan.






PHOTO: Fly, fight and win.

BONUS: We have really cute puppies

Future military working dog, Xxplorer.






Ok, so that’s not just an Air Force thing..but come on..this guy is pretty cute!

See the rest of the photos we picked for this special set.

Now it’s your turn. Share with us any photos or videos you have that remind you of how much you love the Air Force. Email your photos to us, post them on our Facebook page or use #AFLove to tag your creations on Twitter, Vine or Instagram. Your submission just might be chosen to be featured on one of our social media sites.

Celebrating USAFA’s 60th anniversary

By Lt. Gen. Michelle D. Johnson
United States Air Force Academy superintendent

usafa-logoAs we celebrate the Air Force Academy’s 60th anniversary, I salute all of the proud servicemen and women who have devoted themselves to producing leaders of character for our Air Force and our nation. As the United States’ youngest service academy, our Air Force’s Academy continues a proud heritage built on the foundations of integrity, service and excellence.

When an air academy was first suggested almost a century ago, the notion was quickly dismissed. Even when the Air Force was established as an independent service in 1947, many were skeptical of the value of an Air Force academy.

To the group of officers and civilians who were charged with establishing guidelines for an air academy, it was clear: no one else could produce the right combinations of qualities that would be required of leaders in the nation’s newest and most technologically advanced branch of military service. Thus, on April 1, 1954, President Eisenhower signed the legislation that established our Academy.

We’ve come a long way the last sixty years. We have established ourselves as a leader alongside the other military service academies, and among the best universities in the nation. We are ranked among the top 25 liberal arts colleges. Our engineering and management programs are consistently ranked in the top five, and we have the distinct honor of being the no. 1 undergraduate-only institution for research funding. Our graduates are general officers, astronauts, professional athletes, business leaders, and civil servants. We are the Academy; and we have much to be proud of.

We are celebrating our 60th birthday in an exciting, yet turbulent time. We find ourselves entering an interwar period, during sequestration — an historic period of budgetary decline, and at a time when institutions of higher education are defending their very existence. While some may find the times daunting — we are seizing the opportunity to be bold! We will move with confidence into the next 60 years, contributing to the Air Force mission to fly, fight, and win in air, space and cyberspace,” and preserving the essence of what we do here at the Air Force’s Academy — graduating lieutenants prepared to lead.

While the Air Force finds ways to meet shrinking budgets, the Academy must do the same.

We will use these constrained budgets to refine our operations, honoring the vision established 60 years ago while preparing for our future missions. We will become leaner and more streamlined, but we will not lose who we are in the process. We remain dedicated to developing character and leadership.

Our focus on the Air Force mission in air, space and cyberspace remains undiminished. Through the four-year immersion experience, our cadets internalize the Air Force ethos and garner unrivaled exposure to the Air Force professional culture. Competition across the many facets of cadet life, including athletics, is balanced with a strong core curriculum, where the liberal arts find harmony with science, technology, engineering and mathematics. We do all of this on the shoulders of an exemplary Air Force institution.

This is who we are. Our task to produce leaders for the Air Force and our nation is a profound one. The profession of arms requires much of those who serve.

The Academy was founded upon the notion of service and we are continuing that proud heritage today with a renewed emphasis on our culture of commitment and climate of respect. We are committed to service to our nation, and to the Air Force and our core values of integrity, service and excellence. This commitment is what enables us to endure.

Think before you act: it only takes a second for your actions to go viral

By Christa D’Andrea
Air Force Recruiting Service Public Affairs

Have you ever done something you wish you could take back? Said something mean … wrote something inappropriate … behaved in a way that was disrespectful? I’m sure you have or you wouldn’t be human.

However, in today’s society some of these behaviors never go away, even if you tried to delete them. They are documented in Facebook status updates, Instagram photos, Vine videos and on a number of other social media sites. And it only takes a second for your documented actions to go viral.

You may know a few of our fellow Airmen (and Soldiers) recently made news headlines for all the wrong reasons. Within the last few weeks photos that were taken several years ago popped up on a number of official Air Force Facebook pages, including ours. These photos show Airmen acting in a way that is utterly disrespectful and is not consistent with the Air Force’s core values.

There is no need to perpetuate the situation by describing the photos to you, but as you can imagine, one photo of one Airman can taint the American public’s view on the Air Force and the type of people we employ, as a whole.

As an Airman, you have the duty to be an ambassador for the U.S. Air Force; therefore, you must always be cognizant of your actions — in and out of uniform.

There is no margin for error in today’s digital world where everyone has a camera and a video recording device in the palm of their hands. Air Force Instruction 1-1, “Air Force Standards,” outlines what your responsibilities and standards of conduct are as an Airman. It also outlines the responsible use of social media and how it applies professionally and personally. Every Airman should be acutely aware of this AFI and its contents. When everything is laid out in front of you, there are no excuses about not knowing what you can and cannot do on social media.

Unfortunately, there are still some individuals who don’t stop and think before they act. For those in the news recently, something they may have found funny in the moment is now haunting them. And in one case, there were multiple people in the situation, and not one person thought to stop and think about the consequences of what they were about to do. The result — their images as Airmen are forever corrupted.

Social media is not the enemy. It’s actually a fantastic venue to inspire and talk to others about what the Air Force has to offer, what it’s like to be part of something bigger than yourself, and what an honor it is to be an Airman. In your personal life, it’s a lifeline to friends near and far.

You, in fact, can be your own worst enemy. Don’t become the subject of the next viral photo or video. Hold on to your personal self-worth and live by the Air Force’s core values daily.

Be a great Airman first and ensure the Air Force image — and your image — always mirror the core values.

Strong, positive leaders engage Airmen, Dec. 5, 2012


F-15 fly in formation at the Air Force Memorial.

By Col. Jason Beck
51st Security Forces Squadron commander

The stripes, bars, oak leaves, eagles and stars on our uniforms tell the world that we are leaders. Strong, positive leadership is crucial in today’s ever changing Air Force, and the rank on our uniform illustrates visible symbols of our leadership authority that the Air Force has placed on us. But, being a leader consists of much more than the rank that you wear on your uniform. I have been fortunate in my career to be surrounded by phenomenal leaders. The lessons I learned from them helped me develop into the officer I am today. I pass these “essentials” of leadership on to you in the hopes that they help you as much as they have helped me.

Remember, you are a leader 24/7, in and out of uniform, on and off base – not just when it is convenient for you. When your Airmen are working hard, don’t spare yourself, do the same and set the example. Leadership by example isn’t something you can delegate. You must demonstrate it daily. Clock watching shouldn’t happen, especially in today’s “do more with less,” resource-constrained environment.

As a leader, it’s your responsibility to create an atmosphere of mutual trust and confidence in your unit. While being honest with others is paramount, you also have an obligation to be honest with yourself. Don’t do things just to make yourself look good in front of the boss. If this is your idea of being a good leader, you’ve lost before you’ve even started.

It’s imperative we leaders get actively involved in the lives of our Airmen. Demonstrate through actions, not words, that you care about your Airmen and about the conditions they live and work in. Always accept total responsibility for any organizational failures and remember, leaders fix mistakes and never blame others.

Organizations achieve success by having responsible “doers,” not dreamers. Large projects and meaningful achievements are accomplished by brave Airmen in the trenches, not by those who watch from a distance; not by the fans in the stands but by the focused, committed players and coaches on the field; not by those leaders who stay in the middle of the road where things are safe but by those leaders who get off the fence of indecision, even though their decisions are sometimes unpopular. Be a leader and take the decisive action needed; earn your rank every day.

Set standards high and insist everyone else measure up. Haircuts, uniform wear, basic customs and courtesies; these may not be at the top of your priority list as a leader, but if these small details start falling off in your organization, it won’t be long before things such as discipline and job performance begin to suffer. Ensure you work hard for your subordinates – they deserve the best and count on you to set the right tone in your unit.

Communicate with your Airmen daily. Be able to articulate how the role of each Airman contributes to the unit’s mission and how that mission fits into the role of the wing. Know your role and ensure your Airmen are intimately familiar with theirs. Communicate with your Airmen in their work centers, not yours, make yourself available and take the message to them. As hard as it can be, always take the time to leave your desk and make yourself visible in their work areas to demonstrate genuine concern for what your Airmen are doing and thinking. Listen. Airmen are full of great ideas, but they won’t see the light of day if a positive communication climate is not established and fostered.

Above all, be honest with your subordinates and superiors. Tell it like it is and insist that your Airmen do the same. There are few things that can be more disastrous to the dynamics of an organization than “yes” people, half-truths and a lack of integrity.

I sincerely hope that you’ve had the good fortune to be surrounded by great leaders in your career like I have. There are as many principles of good leadership as there are people who serve as leaders. However, that doesn’t diminish the importance of strong, positive, engaged leadership.

As a leader, it is imperative you select and carry out the principles that work the best for you and your Airmen.

Photo: Four F-15E Strike Eagles fly June 2, 2011, above the Air Force Memorial in Arlington, Va. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Gino Reyes)