Tag Archives: Paula Roy

Mrs. Welsh, Mrs. Roy chat about Air Force family, departure

By Othana Montoya
Air Force Public Affairs Agency

We held a tweet chat Tuesday with Mrs. Betty Welsh, wife of the Chief of Staff of the Air Force, Gen. Mark A. Welsh III, and Mrs. Paula Roy, wife of the former Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force, James A. Roy, to answer questions about the Air Force family and Mrs. Roy’s departure. If you didn’t have a chance to watch the tweet chat, we have the discussion for you here.

Question: What are your goals for the Air Force family this year?
Answer: Mrs. Welsh: My goals are that we take care of them in this time of uncertainty and that we keep our families informed and at the forefront of any decisions that may affect them.

Question: What do you think are the greatest challenges awaiting the AF family for 2013?
Answer: Mrs. Welsh: Clearly understanding what is and is not happening in the budget environment and how it will affect our families. The majority of these cuts will not affect them immediately and the long term impact is difficult to access. Allowing us to examine those impacts and explain them to the families will be important. Keeping them informed and asking them to be patient so we can get them the information they need to be informed.

Mrs. Welsh and Mrs. Roy

Question: What is your opinion on the current job/education availability for AF spouses?  Do you see any big changes coming to these programs?
Answer: Mrs. Welsh: In 2012, the Military Spouse Employment Partnership and Hiring Our Heroes held 15 hiring fairs. Over 6,000 spouses have attended, reaping the benefit of over 30 different career workshops and presentations held by our government and nonprofit Alliance partners. 500 spouses have been hired.

Question: As your time as the CMSAF’s wife comes to a close, what was your greatest accomplishment & what are you most proud of?
Answer: Mrs. Roy: We have really worked hard to focus on families, key spouse, spouse courses, trips/visits, etc. The importance of a military member’s family is something I feel we cannot emphasize enough. Families provide the critical support needed to get the mission done. We probably have a way to go with this, but we definitely tried to put a great deal of focus on this.

Question: What words of wisdom do you wish to leave with our Airmen and families?
Answer: Mrs. Roy: You are amazing, and we are incredibly proud of you. We are in awe of what you accomplish every day. Our time serving as CMSAF has been a tremendous blessing for our whole family and something we will never forget. Continue to do great things because tomorrow’s Air Force will need your dedication and innovation more than ever.

Question: Did you see the female secret service agents protecting our President yesterday? Isn’t that wonderful?
Answer: Mrs. Welsh and Mrs. Roy: We agree it is awesome to see women working in the protective service of the President. They all did an amazing job yesterday!

Question: What are the best/worst parts about your husbands working in such important and public positions?
Answer: Mrs. Welsh and Mrs. Roy: The best part is being with the Airmen and their families. To me there was no worst part. The opportunity is so amazing that it makes up for the long hours and hardships.

Question: Have you started CrossFit yet? We discussed it while visiting RAF Mildenhall.
Answer: Mrs. Welsh: I have not tried CrossFit, but I sent my daughter and she loves it. I’ve decided to stick with yoga and running.

Question: What do you think of the USMC requiring admittance of partners of gay service members at spouse clubs?
Answer: Mrs. Welsh: I would hope when we are talking about any club that supports our military spouses, they would be more inclusive than exclusive. Our Airmen and families deserve all the support we can give them.

Question: The Key Spouse program is a wonderful concept but needs some work AF wide, do you have any suggestions?
Answer: Mrs. Welsh: It’s been an honor and a privilege to champion this program for the last 3.5 yrs. We hope as we continue to work this program that we will meet the needs across the AF of all AF families.

Question:  Does the Air Force put a strain on your relationships or at all put your family on hold?
Answer:  Mrs. Welsh and Mrs. Roy: Yes, like every job does, but we try & focus on the wonderful opportunities meeting people & the exposure to different cultures. You can’t put your family on hold, you have to take care of the family & our AF responsibilities. It’s a constant balance.

Question: If you had to fill out a dream sheet of bases where you wanted to be stationed, what would be your top 5?
Answer: Mrs. Roy: I’ve had the opportunity to spend a lot of time in the Pacific theater… Although I’ve visited Europe, I’ve never lived there, so that is where I’d like to be stationed.
Mrs. Welsh: Anywhere in Texas, we had the opportunity to have a short tour there & loved being so close to family.

Question: How long have your husbands served?
Answer: CMSAF Roy 30.5 years and Gen. Welsh 36.5 years.

Question: What advice would you give to young Airmen with just over a year of service?
Answer: Mrs. Welsh and Mrs. Roy: Be the best Airmen you can, and take advantage of every opportunity you can.  Be the best leader you can.

Question:  What are your goals for the Air Force family this year?
Answer: Mrs. Welsh: My goals are that we take care of them in this time of uncertainty & we keep our families informed and at the forefront of any decisions that may affect them.

Question: What does it mean to you to be a leader?
Answer: Mrs. Welsh and Mrs. Roy: Our AF core values are a wonderful place to start. Integrity, service and excellence.

Question: What are you most looking forward to during your husband’s retirement? What’s next for your family?
Answer: Mrs. Roy: I want to continue to serve Airmen & their families as much as I can.  I will be joining the AFA team as their director of Airman & Family programs.  I look forward to continuing to support the great men & women who serve in our AF & their families.

Question: What advice would you give to a young aspiring woman wanting to join the Airmen?
Answer: Work hard in school and ensure you are mentally and physically ready to join the best team you could ever be a part of.

Closing: Mrs. Welsh: I want to close by thanking Mrs. Roy for her service & all she’s done for Airmen & their families. She’s truly been a team player & I’m thankful it’s not goodbye b/c she’ll always be in our hearts.

Photo: Mrs. Betty Welsh and Mrs. Paula Roy prepare for a tweet chat January 22, 2013.