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.


 
 

 
(U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Adam Grant)

AFSOUTH Liaison Officers: Embarking on a journey toward a promising future

Colonel Alex Voigt has only been serving as the Air Forces Southern Chilean Liaison Officer at Davis-Monthan for a couple of months, but with a history of Chilean LNOs reaching the rank of general and one even going on to serve...
 
 

D-M commander mixes it up with ‘The Morning Blend’

(U.S. Air Force Photo by Airman 1st Class Chris Massey) U.S. Air Force Col. James P. Meger, 355th Fighter Wing commander, Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, Ariz., talks with TV hosts, Tina Jennings and Maria Parmigiani, during a live recording of “The Morning Blend” at KGUN9 Studio, Tucson, Nov. 24. Meger went on the show to...
 
 

Let’s talk turkey: Prepare the perfect bird this holiday season

Whether having a big group over to share the Thanksgiving festivities or it’s just you and the Family, the centerpiece of any Thanksgiving table is the turkey. Guests will graze around the appetizer table careful not to fill their bellies in anticipation of the plump, juicy turkey and all the fixin’s. Most people aren’t world-renowned...
 

 
DoD

New allotment rule protects troops from lending scams

WASHINGTON (AFNS) — Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel has directed a policy change in new paycheck allotments to prevent unscrupulous commercial lenders from taking advantage of troops and their families, Pentagon officials said Nov. 21. According to a Defense Department news release, effective Jan. 1, 2015, the change in DOD’s financial management regulation will prohibit service...
 
 

Officials highlight health, wellness resources for Military Families

WASHINGTON, Nov. 21 – As efforts continue to strengthen service members and their families, Pentagon officials held a Bloggers Roundtable to highlight the myriad resources available to tackle the unique military and transitional challenges those who serve may face. Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Military Community and Family Policy Rosemary Freitas Williams, Marine Corps...
 
 

Thanksgiving and our Native Americans

PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. — On the fourth Thursday of every November, we as Americans celebrate the national holiday Thanksgiving. This day focuses on honoring the early settlers, and their harvest feast, which we know to be the “First Thanksgiving.” However, long before settlers came to the United States’ East Coast, the area was inhabited by...
 




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