Mobility Airmen delivered mission success globally in 2017. I’m tremendously proud of each of you and humbled by your professionalism and dedication.
From providing air refueling operations that enabled Air Force bombers to fly around the world in support of Operation Inherent Resolve; to the first Mobility Guardian exercise; to airlifting humanitarian aid to Hurricane Maria survivors in Puerto Rico; to providing aeromedical evacuation for wounded service members serving in Afghanistan — Mobility Airmen delivered.
You are the lifeblood of the joint fight, and I can’t wait to see what you accomplish this year.
Now that you’re still plotting out how to maintain your resolutions, I want to share my focus for 2018 with you. The new year is a time of forward-thinking and goal-setting, and I’d like Mobility Airmen to focus on Total Force Full Spectrum Readiness.
Defining this phrase requires breaking down the individual concepts. Most people in the Air Force should be familiar with the term total force, meaning all of our components — all uniformed and civilian members of the Air Force, active duty, Guard, Reserve and the Civil Air Patrol.
I like to expand that definition when I say, “big ‘A’ Airmen,” to also include our contractors, family members and retirees.
Total Force Full Spectrum Readiness includes all of our Airmen under the total force umbrella, across the entire spectrum — from home station to deployed locations.
While you continue to excel, we must also continually seek out opportunities to improve. Total Force Full Spectrum Readiness requires improving equipment and tactics used to meet the complex threats being developed and proliferated among potential adversaries.
To help us continue moving in the right direction, Airmen can look forward to a Superintendents 101 course, a flight commanders’ course, a Mobility Capability Assessment study and integrating more with international partners when planning scenarios during exercises — just like we did during Mobility Guardian at Joint Base Lewis-McChord.
The readiness aspect is critical in all we do — readiness entails being ready for the fight — from having our family prepared on the homefront; to conducting and completing the training we need to accomplish the mission; to ensuring we have the equipment and expertise we need to not only sustain the fight, but to win the fight. Whatever challenge the world presents, we have to do everything possible to ensure our Airmen’s readiness.
As Airmen in today’s Air Force, we are not strangers to confronting challenges. From personnel cuts to budget constraints, times have been tough. But, in the face of adversity, you have triumphed.
You are the key to overcoming future challenges and ensuring readiness now and in the future. And you are delivering. Each time I visit a base, I’m amazed by the innovations I see from our Airmen — from mixed virtual reality glasses to help our maintainers with inexpensive real-time training to developing mock-up flight decks to provide our flying crew chiefs the ability to step through procedures that would otherwise require an aircraft to be present.
Through engaging our total force across the entire spectrum, we are going to ensure readiness now and in the future. This concept is going to help us continue to drive innovation across the entire Air Force for generations to come.
I hope you’re ready 2018; our Mobility Airmen are!