PEOPLE FIRST December 4, 2015


Food safety tips for holiday season

Colder weather is settling in and it’s time for warm cider, pumpkin spice lattes, deep-fried turkeys and visits from the relatives this holiday season.

Kids love being involved in cooking pies, cookies and other sweet treats, while most of us love to overindulge on all of the fantastic food.

With an overindulgence of foods like turkey, ham and potato salad, folks should be mindful of ways to keep food safe.

Here are some tips to ensure your holiday season stays joyful and merry:

– Wash your hands. Possibly one of the easiest ways to prevent a foodborne illness is to keep your hands clean. Ensure you wash your hands prior to handling food, in between different tasks, after using the restroom, and after touching something such as you nose, hair, face, or pets. You should wash your hands with warm water and soap for at least 20 seconds to minimize cross contamination.

– Clean and sanitize food contact surfaces. Counters, cutting boards, knives, and other dishes should be washed after each use and prior to being used for a different food item.

AF welcomes newest 3-star general to lead

Air Force Vice Chief of Staff Gen. David Goldfein welcomed the newest lieutenant general to the Air Force, who will serve as the 31st Air Force deputy chief of staff for manpower, personnel and services, during a Nov. 16 ceremony at the Pentagon.

With her new title, Lt. Gen. Gina Grosso is responsible for comprehensive plans and policies covering all life cycles of military and civilian personnel management, which includes military and civilian end strength management, education and training, compensation, resource allocation, and the worldwide Air Force services program. She is the first female to hold the position.

Grosso said that the Air Force has given her opportunities of increasing responsibility and authority in the manpower, personnel and services arena, including command opportunity positions to prepare her for her new role.

“I never aspired to be a three star,” Grosso said. “I always aspired to be a good Airman and do the best I could in the job the Air Force asked me to do.”

AF revamping flight, operational medicine

The Air Force Medical Service is restructuring flight and operational medicine by separating primary care and occupational medicine services into two distinct clinics, with the goal of improving care and creating more efficient and patient-centered workflows.

This new concept, known as the base operational medicine clinic will establish dedicated clinics for Airmen exams.

“Right now we repurpose primary care teams to do this, but because BOMC is an exams-only clinic, we can organize around those workflows. Instead of patients having to go to the hospital and thread all the exam pieces, we’ll thread those in advance for them,” said Col. Anthony Tvaryanas, the project manager at the 711th Human Systems Integration Directorate at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio.

Keesler AFB, Mississippi, is serving as the pilot site for BOMC, the first of its kind in the Air Force. The first phase of the project was launched at Keesler in 2013, where teams are currently in the process of launching and testing phase 2 and 3.

AF chief scientist testifies before congress on autonomy

The chief scientist of the Air Force testified in November before the House Armed Services Subcommittee on Emerging Threats and Capabilities on Capitol Hill.

During his testimony, Greg L. Zacharias spoke of the Air Force’s vision for autonomy in future defense systems and the goal to have effective teams of humans and machines work together effectively, efficiently, predictably and robustly.

“We seek the right balance of human and machine teaming to meet future operational challenges, by combining increasingly capable hardware and software systems, with unique human abilities in perception, judgment and innovation,” Zacharias said. “Boiled down to its essentials, the Air Force’s autonomy science and technology vision is: intelligent machines seamlessly integrated with humans, maximizing mission performance in complex and contested environments.”

Zacharias testified there are three strategic objectives embedded in this vision. First, develop sensors and data gathering technology that can provide the needed information for a system to better understand its operating environment and mission goals. Second, develop reasoning systems and software environments to assess situations and make recommendations or decisions.