MacDill first sergeant leads expectant fathers

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Lauren Cobin

MACDILL AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. – Seeking to support military fathers, U.S. Air Force Master Sgt. Craig Miller, the 6th Maintenance Group first sergeant, recently led a Dad's 101 workshop at MacDill Air Force Base, Florida.

Tailored for military service members, the workshop delved into practical skills for new or expectant dads, including care for infants, supporting partners, preparing for labor and delivery, and navigating the lifestyle changes that come with parenthood.

As a father to five children, ranging from a 15-year-old daughter to a 1-year-old son, Miller is no stranger to the field of parenting, explaining, “I have always wanted to be a dad.”

“It’s hard to define success [as a parent],” he said. "This is my second time conducting a fatherhood workshop. I love being a father and I want to see great dads in the world.”

Hannah Hoffman, a licensed clinical social worker and family advocacy intervention specialist for MacDill AFB, arranges these events on a quarterly basis to provide support for new fathers navigating the complexities of parenthood. She often selects outstanding mentors within the units to lead these events based on their experience and relatability to service members.

She knew Miller would be an excellent fit to lead this class, sharing, “I had the opportunity to meet and interact with Master Sgt. Miller on various occasions this year through outreach and prevention events on base.”

“Miller's infectious energy and positive attitude has a way of engaging with individuals in a genuine way as he shares his experience being a father to five children,” she said.

While reflecting on his two decades of service to the Air Force, Miller shared that being a dad has shaped him into a better Airman, above all else.

During the workshop, Miller covered military-specific challenges associated with fatherhood, and addressed the importance of being a great husband and supporter for service members transitioning into fatherhood for the first time.

Miller advised that time spent away from home and overcoming pride are two potential barriers to hurdle when parenting as an active duty service member. He emphasizes, "build trust within your relationship and practice humility."

“The best part of being a dad is spending time with them and teaching them about life,” he said.

This sentiment fueled his passion for teaching and guiding others in the realm of fatherhood. As the workshop aimed to empower military dads, Miller expressed, “Dads can make a difference in the world.”

Hoffman shared, “Miller's passion for his family translates into palpable enthusiasm for the new and often nervous dads.”

As part of the larger initiative of the Family Advocacy Program at MacDill AFB, Hoffman hopes for attendees to feel more comfortable and confident in their roles as new fathers, with the help of Miller’s character and values.

Miller's fatherhood workshop provided not just practical guidance but a heartfelt perspective on the unique blend of military service and fatherhood.