On Jan. 24, I was appointed as your 17th Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force. It was an incredible day and as we begin this journey, I wanted to send a quick note to let you know a little bit more about me.
First and foremost, I could not be any prouder of the men and women in our U.S. Air Force and their families. Thank you for your service. Our Air Force consists of 690,000 diverse, highly skilled, dedicated and brilliant people and none is more important than the other. We must all work together as a team to produce unbeatable airpower for our nation.
As General Welsh has said, every one of us has a story. My story revolves around the Air Force. I am proud to have been an Airman for just over 28 years now. I married an Airman, Athena is a retired Chief Master Sgt. and our son is an Airman. We understand the sacrifices you make and the challenges you face — this is family business.
Coming out of the Air Education and Training Command, I have a pretty, clear view of how we train and educate Airmen. I believe education and training are the foundation of our airpower advantage and must be protected. This will be one of my focus areas. Education and training, along with experience, are the keys to the deliberate development of Airmen that will ensure the continued success of our Air Force today and into the future. I expect us to continue focusing on all three of these things.
We cannot have airpower without Airmen. We rely on Airmen to accomplish our missions. I think it is critical that we make sure you have the resources you need to do your job. Our programs and services should meet the needs of our Airmen and their families. This will be another of my focus areas.
While we are doing all this, we also need to strike an appropriate work/life balance. Our Nation demands a lot from its Airmen and that is not likely to change, but if we can eliminate unnecessary additional duties and find ways to use technology to give us some time back, I think we should do that. On top of that, our workplaces must be safe and productive environments where innovative Airmen can function at their best — another focus area.
From the pioneering spirit of CMSAF Paul Airey, to the bold leadership of CMSAF Jim Roy, our force has prospered from a long line of brilliant and visionary Chief Master Sergeants of the Air Force. It is my mission to continue that legacy, the best way I can.
It is most important to me that you know Athena and I will be working with you, your family, your development and your mission in mind.
Thank you for your service to our Nation.