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  • Follow your gut; it usually points to your destiny

    I've always heard people say, "Follow your gut instinct because it's probably right." For as long as I can remember, every time I was asked the question "What do you want to be when you grow up?" the answer was different. It seemed my dream job changed as often as the seasons and was probably as diverse. When I got to college I decided I should
  • Saluting those 'Above All' Airmen

    As I was standing on stage in the U.S. Air Force Expeditionary Center's Grace Peterson Hall before 90 of the toughest Airmen you'll ever meet. Midway through talking to them, I had the realization dawn on me that these Airmen were soon heading off to war. It's not an unusual thing to think about at the USAF EC, because it's fairly normal for
  • Airman-to-Airman, this is for you

    When I first came to Charleston, I had no idea what to expect. I had just returned from leave, and all I really knew about my job was what I learned from tech school. So was I nervous? Heck yeah, I was! But during the next few hours, the butterflies in my stomach quickly died away. I was introduced to an event called a "Combat Dining-In," a
  • Combat skills training creates stronger Airmen

    I returned April 18 from two weeks of training that I may never use -- two weeks of crawling through mud, running with 40 pounds of body armor strapped to my shoulders and head and eating field rations. I'd do it all again in a heartbeat. The training I attended was the Air Force's Advanced Contingency Skills Training Course, offered at the U.S.
  • 10 helpful tips for long, successful Air Force career

    A few years ago, I read an article written for an Air Force base paper in England. It was written by captain on the Area Defense Counsel. In it, he discussed -- from his experiences -- the top ten things an Airman could do to stay out of trouble. I've had the opportunity to command five different units and have found that advice to be spot on. I
  • Earn This

    In the summer of 1998, there was a lot of discussion in the media about the opening 10 minutes of the film "Saving Private Ryan" and how traumatic it might be for our greatest generation, those who actually stormed the beaches at Normandy and lived to tell us their tales. As I sat in a very cold theater in the Pentagon City Mall in the midst of a
  • Building resilience, options for improved psychological health key to preserving most precious resource: People

    With the number of warriors returning from Iraq and Afghanistan and recent college shootings, community resiliency and mental health has become a national conversation. It's amazing how family and community networks come together and help each other. This network of community resources, including healthcare providers, school counselors, chaplains
  • Are you ready?

    Seriously, are you ready? The Air Force of today is significantly different than the Air Force I joined 18 years ago. I can't imagine how different it is for our Senior Leaders. Part of that difference is that we are a more expeditionary force, a more fit force and a more intelligent force. Today I will focus on the expeditionary aspect. So back to
  • A Ride To Remember

    The back end of a mighty C-130 Hercules at any altitude has never been considered a comfortable place. During flight, a steady vibration shakes all aboard; the passengers, who are rarely afforded knee or elbow room, wear earplugs to help block out the hum of the propellers which continuously cut through the air like a hot knife through butter.
  • Flexibility really is the key to airpower

    It's Friday afternoon, and all seems quiet around Charleston AFB. A staff sergeant is in the protocol office planning her weekend. The phone rings and it's the command post, and they're telling her a distinguished visitor is on board a C-21 set to arrive on base in 30 minutes. She has the distinguished visitor's full name and rank, but that is it.
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