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Air Force Global Strike Command prioritizes first sergeant development

  • Published
  • By Chief Master Sgt. Jill M. LaVoie
  • Air Force Global Strike Command

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-RANDOLPH, Texas-- Air Force Global Strike Command recently held its 2nd Annual AFGSC First Sergeant Conference at Joint Base San Antonio, Texas. The course aims to develop refined, resilient first sergeants who are better prepared to lead AFGSC into the future. The time-honored duty of first sergeants serves a critical role in keeping the Air Force’s global strike capability safe, secure, lethal and ready.

Forty-nine first sergeants from around the command gathered to cultivate their first sergeant knowledge, share experiences, as well as garner perspective and communicate concerns with command leadership.

“It really meant a lot that the commander holds our mission in a high enough esteem that he took the time to have a one-on-one conversation,” said Master Sgt. Ryen Yokom, 90th Missile Maintenance Squadron first sergeant. “They are making first sergeants and our development a priority. It was a great experience to have so many leaders across global strike come together for a week to address some of our issues and concerns with taking care of Airman, and allow us to collaborate and have a meaningful discussion.”

During the week-long event, command first sergeants were able to meet with Gen. Timothy Ray, AFGSC commander, and Chief Master Sgt. Charles Hoffman, AFGSC command chief, who provided a strategic perspective. First sergeants were also able to visit with the First Sergeant Special Duty Manager, Numbered Air Force and wing command chiefs. They also received briefings from the many helping agencies first sergeants rely on.

“We are equipping our teammates with a host of information and helping them build connections as we meet the (Air Force Personnel Center) resource teams that work our issues,” said Chief Master Sgt. Robert Tibi, AFGSC First Sergeant Functional Manager. “First sergeants then bring those resources back to their units, increasing the first sergeant’s ability to bring the commander’s vision to fruition and enhance the lives of our Strikers through support and expertise of the first sergeant.”

In addition to building connections with helping agencies, first sergeants also had the opportunity to network and share ideas with other command first sergeants.

“It was great, being able to network and cross talk with other first sergeants,” said Yokom. “Being able to talk to our peers across the command was extremely beneficial. We can get tunnel vision in our area or mission set—seeing what those other units are doing, how they are affecting change, supporting Airman and getting the mission done. It’s good to see other ways to do that.”

While in San Antonio, AFGSC first sergeants also visited basic military training and the security forces technical training center.

“We did this last for the first time and got really great feedback in response to a lot of the misinformation you hear about BMT,” Tibi said. “We were able to see firsthand the quality of Airmen being produced. It gave us new perspective.”