NELLIS AIR FORCE BASE, Nev. — As a young Air Force spouse, Jean Busch, United States Advanced Maintenance and Munitions Officer Operations School secretary, knew her life would be different from many of her hometown friends in Richfield, Minn.
Busch respected the military and her husband’s career, and it inspired her to serve the Air Force as a civil servant.
Busch began her Air Force service in 1983 as a secretary at Elmendorf Air Force Base, Alaska. Over many years as a secretary, her skills and responsibilities have evolved to keep pace with technology and the dynamic Air Force mission.
That first secretarial position some 30 years ago was driven by the typewriter and manual processing of reports and documents. Today, Jean has a broad range of responsibilities that require sound judgment, time management skills, an in-depth understanding of Air Force administration procedures and expert utilization of Air Force Information Technology tools.
She was hired as the very first AMMOS secretary in 2002 and serves as an integral member of the AMMOS Cadre. She plans and executes all AMMOS graduation ceremonies(her 34th next week), processes all enlisted and officer performance reports, tracks daily suspense’s, and manages the Commandant’s calendar to ensure mission priorities are accomplished. As an original cadre member, Busch is part of the fabric that makes AMMOS the premier maintenance training institution in the Air Force.
“When we moved into our new building, I was honored when the commandant at the time told me to pick the plants for the office, the desks and chairs, order the blinds as well as decorating the woman’s “Rosie the Riveter” bathroom. This is something as a young secretary I never thought I’d have an input in,” Busch said, “When I got this job I knew it would be one that tested me each day and that is something I enjoy.”
Busch has worked with all six commandants during her tenure at AMMOS. Each commandant brings their own leadership style to the job, so her understanding of AMMOS history and standard operating procedures, as well as her ability to adapt has proven critical to ensuring smooth leadership transitions.
“Jean makes my job easier with her knowledge of the school and her ability to take charge of situations,” said Lt. Col. Brian Moore, USAF AMMOS commandant, “We rely on Jean for much more than answering phone calls and filing paperwork, she basically functions as the only [executive officer] AMMOS has known.” In 30 years of civil service to the Air Force, her performance has been recognized with many awards such as 57th Operations Group Civilian of the Year, 57th Operations Support Squadron Civilian of the Year and 57th Wing Civilian of the Year.
“I have been blessed to have great leadership that recognizes and appreciates my work,” Busch said, “I am not a selfish person; I have always believed it’s the team first. But when you can be singled out for your specific achievements, it’s truly a great feeling.”
Busch then said it’s hard to explain the feelings she gets when she thinks about the past and where she came from, to now where she is a well-respected and vital person within the school house.
From the beginning in 1983, Busch has made one thing clear, she would not be deterred from doing everything required to accomplish the mission. Busch doesn’t take any task lightly, weather it is scheduling appointments or ensuring AMMOS graduations go without a hitch, she takes great pride in being a civilian Airman.
“Some men and women serve their country for as long as they can until it’s time to retire,” Busch said, “I love my job and will keep doing the best I can.”