Salutes & Awards

May 9, 2013

Test center welcomes new commander; praises ‘Total Force Integration’

Tags:
Staff Sgt. Erich B. Smith
162nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs
(U.S. Air National Guard photo by Master Sgt. Amie Neighbors)
Brig. Gen. James C. Witham, Deputy Director, Air National Guard, the Pentagon, (left) passes the command flag to Col. Matthew J. Manifold, who will head the Air National Guard Air Force Reserve Command Test Center (AATC) at the 162nd Fighter Wing in Tucson, Ariz., May 3, 2013.

An Air Guard command pilot took the reins as commander of the Air National Guard Air Force Reserve Command Test Center (AATC) at the 162nd Fighter Wing after a change-of-command ceremony here May 3.

Col. Matthew J. Manifold replaced Col. Richard J. Dennee, who retired after 30 years of combined military service in the Air Guard and Air Force.

In his speech, Col. Manifold outlined his primary purpose as the new head of the AATC.

“As a test center commander, I’ll make sure that Airmen in the field are going to have the best equipment available to prosecute the enemy. And in the next war, we’re going to take all that equipment, and do it all over again,” he said. “That’s my promise.”

Col. Manifold arrived in Tucson from Nellis Air Force Base, where he served as Air National Guard Advisor to the Commander, U.S. Air Force Warfare Center. He previously held the position of Director of Operations for the AATC.

Col. Manifold praised the test center as a mecca of collaborative efficiency and wartime relevancy.

“We (AATC) knew what ‘Total Force Integration’ was before anybody else, and we’re a family,” he said. “I can do all the testing I want right here, but until I get it in the hands of the warfighter, it does me no good. That’s why we have a saying: ‘It doesn’t count until they’re flying and sustaining it in the field.’”

Though the 162nd Fighter Wing is widely known in Air Force circles as a world-premiere, international F-16 training unit, the AATC is unique as it serves as a tenant of the wing with the primary mission of keeping the Air Reserve Component function on par with its active-duty counterpart.

Retired Air Guard Col. Paul H. O’Donnell, the AATC’s first commander, said the presence of older aircraft and equipment justified the need to establish a highly functional test center.

“We had aircraft that were no longer in the active inventory,” he said. “What we wanted to do was have a way to implement minor-level modifications so that we can continue to have a viable weapons system.”

Thus, the Fighter Weapons Office – which would eventually be renamed the Air National Guard Air Force Reserve Command Test Center – became a reality in 1981.

Col. Dennee, the departing commander, said the AATC will move forward in its steadfast commitment of “keeping the mission objectives focused and giving the tools our warfighters need to do their jobs.”

“The relationship we (AATC) have with the 162nd Fighter Wing is great,” said Col. Manifold, who has logged over 800 combat flying hours during such operations as Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom. “They let us hang our hats and park our airplanes here, and even though we are a tenant unit, this wing has never made us feel that way.”




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

New automated evals, decorations processing available

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-RANDOLPH, Texas (AFNS) — Beginning in May, supervisors of active-duty Airmen will be able to initiate, process, track and sign officer and enlisted evaluations using myPers, Air Force Personnel Center officials announced May 15. Additionally, beginning in June, supervisors of active-duty members will be able to use myPers to initiate and track...
 
 

Deployed 355th SFS Defender received recognition

SOUTHWEST ASIA  — Airman 1st Class Tinalouise Dunbar, from Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, was recently selected by 386th Air Expeditionary Wing leadership as April’s Unsung Hero Award recipient. Dunbar distinguished herself by protecting the US Speaker of the House, 30 distinguished visitors, six Senators and two British members of Parliament. She liaised with the United States Secret...
 
 
Nurse_pict

Air Force recognizes nurses and medical technicians

SHAW AIR FORCE BASE, S.C.  — Running from May 6-12, nurses and medical technicians throughout the Air Force were recognized for the care they provide to Service members and their families. The theme of the week “Ethi...
 

 

May is Asian American, Pacific Islander Heritage Month

MAXWELL AIR FORCE BASE, Ala. (AFNS) — In 1978, Congress established Asian-Pacific American Heritage Week to celebrate the achievements and contributions of Asian and Pacific Islander Americans to U.S. history and culture. In 1990, President George H.W. Bush extended the celebration to the entire month. On Oct. 23, 1992, Congress officially designated May of each...
 
 
(U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Marleah Robertson)

First female F-35 pilot begins training

EGLIN AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. — Lt. Col. Christine Mau, 33rd Fighter Wing Operations Group deputy commander, completed her first training flight in the single-seat fifth-generation fighter following 14 virtual training missi...
 
 
Defender_pict

A deployed 355th SFS Defender received recognition

SOUTHWEST ASIA – Airman 1st Class Tinalouise Dunbar, from Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, Ariz., was recently selected by 386th Air Expeditionary Wing leadership as April’s Unsung Hero Award recipient. Dunbar distinguished he...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin