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Happy 70th, MacDill; some team standouts to note

  • Published
  • By Col. Lenny Richoux
  • 6th Air Mobility Wing commander
Happy Birthday MacDill Air Force Base! We are celebrating our 70th anniversary and a proud Air Force heritage in Tampa. I am truly grateful to serve with the fine women and men who currently are stationed on this base, and I look up to the leaders who paved the way in Mobility excellence getting us to where we are present-day.

That same spirit of excellence undoubtedly continues to thrive. Just recently I attended a going-away luncheon for a junior staff officer and I commented on what I'd seen in him. I reflected on the distinguishing quality of transformational leadership he applied to tasks he was given.

Nowadays, many junior personnel are working in critical slots that once were occupied by mid-level non-commissioned officers and officers. You're being demanded, now more than ever, to grow up quickly and to step up to the challenge of greater capacity. Frankly, you're manning critical positions at a younger age.

Recently we simultaneously supported Operation Tomadachi relief efforts in Japan, Operation Odyssey Dawn and other world-wide contingencies.

Additionally the 6 AMW Vice Commander, Col. David Cohen is deployed to support the 313th Air Expeditionary Wing for Operation Unified Protector mission over Libya.

I'm witnessing that MacDill isn't just developing leaders, but developing transformational leaders-those of you who are seizing the challenge of taking the vision your commanders have articulated, and you're understanding their intent and filling in the pragmatic planks. You're making it happen in reality, manifesting great things for the base.

Many of you have shown that you're motivated and mature enough to do it.
Just like great leaders and pioneers that lived and breathed on MacDill in the past, we are seeing MacDill's own make outstanding contributions that will become history's milestones that Airmen will reflect on in the future.

We were informed this week that four MacDill Airmen were selected to attend Phoenix Stripe next month. Phoenix Stripe is a highly-selective, four-star-sponsored conference held at AMC headquarters, suited to develop the transformational leaders like the ones I've described. I'm proud to congratulate Staff Sgt. Kevin Rocha from the 6th Maintenance Squadron, Staff Sgt. Roger Zehr, of the 6th Operations Support Squadron, 6th Aerospace Medicine Squadron's Staff Sgt. Christopher Pina, and Tech. Sgt. Caren Price representing the Wing Staff.

The 6th Medical Group's Tech. Sgt. Frances Sloat, an advanced oral hygiene technician, was recently selected NCO of the Quarter for the Medical Group.

Tech. Sgt. Alan Matthews, a 310 Airlift Squadron instructor, flight engineer, managed a $1.4 million flight safety aircrew training contract as the crew resource management facilitator. He organized and led biweekly training sessions that were instrumental to crew coordination and mishap prevention. He also recently completed a Master of Business Administration degree.

Also, the 6th Medical Group's 1st Lt. Erin O'Connor took the women's bronze medal in the Armed Forces Triathlon, April 9.

I am proud to serve with you in the finest Air Mobility Wing on the face of the planet!