This week's photos feature Airmen from around the globe involved in activities supporting expeditionary operations and defending America. This weekly feature showcases the men and women of the Air Force.
One of the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds crash landed June 2 in a field near Colorado Springs, Colorado, following the U.S. Air Force Academy commencement, which was attended by President Barack Obama.
CONTRACTS NAVY Northrop Grumman Systems Corp., San Diego, California, is being awarded $62,406,998 for modification P00003 to a previously awarded cost-plus-fixed-fee contract (N00019-15-C-0007) to exercise an option for operation and maintenance services in support of the Broad Area Maritime Surveillance-Demonstrator (BAMS-D) program. In
Brigadier General Chad Franks is the Senior Executive Officer to the Vice Chief of Staff United States Air Force.
Brig. Gen. Lee Ann Bennett is the Mobilization Assistant to the Commander, 25th Air Force, Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, Texas.
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<strong>FORT GEORGE G. MEADE, Md. (AFNS)</strong> -- The Hurricane Hunters of the 53rd Weather Reconnaissance Squadron use high-tech equipment called a &ldquo;dropsonde&rdquo; to aid in the forecasting of hurricanes and other tropical storms. <br />
The Air Force Tech Report is a video series that gives viewers a quick look at current technology the Air Force uses to fly, fight and win.<br />
Related links:<br />
- <a href="http://www.af.mil/News/ArticleDisplay/tabid/223/Article/779244/hurricane-hunters-noaa-stress-hurricane-preparedness.aspx" target="_blank">Hurricane Hunters, NOAA stress hurricane preparedness</a><br />
- <a href="http://www.af.mil/News/ArticleDisplay/tabid/223/Article/644324/hurricane-hunters-gather-forecast-data-on-record-breaking-blizzard.aspx" target="_blank">Hurricane Hunters gather forecast data on record-breaking blizzard</a>
Results of the first promotion board using the forced distribution process were released May 25, highlighting a close connection between commander recommendations and those selected for promotion.<br />
&ldquo;These results are achieving the intended purpose of the new evaluation and promotion systems we previewed to our enlisted force during last year&rsquo;s roadshows,&rdquo; said Lt. Gen. Gina Grosso, the deputy chief of staff for manpower, personnel and services. &ldquo;Performance assessment, along with input from supervisors at all levels, is helping identify and promote our top performers.&rdquo;<br />
The 5,019 technical sergeants selected for promotion, out of 21,504 eligible, represent an increase in the overall selection rate of 23.3 percent compared to last year&rsquo;s rate of 22.4 percent. The selection rate to technical sergeant continues to move closer to the historical average of 24.2 percent selection rate following the reduced rates associated with the force management drawdown in 2014. <br />
Promotion recommendations had a significant impact on promotion selection. Ninety percent of Airmen who received a &ldquo;promote now&rdquo; and 75 percent of the Airmen who received a &ldquo;must promote&rdquo; were promoted to master sergeant. <br />
Additionally, and as intended, more than 2,000 Airmen receiving a &ldquo;promote&rdquo; recommendation were also selected for promotion -- nearly 41 percent of the 5,019 selected for promotion.<br />
&ldquo;We built the system to ensure Airmen who received the highest promotion recommendations from their commanders would have a significant advantage, while also ensuring Airmen who received a promote recommendation would remain competitive,&rdquo; said Chief Master Sgt. of the Air Force James A. Cody. &ldquo;These results show us we&rsquo;re moving in the right direction, and should help alleviate concerns Airmen may have had about not being promotable without one of the top recommendations.&rdquo;<br />
Earlier this year, the Air Force conducted and released the results of the senior master sergeant and chief master sergeant promotion boards, which were the first to use restricted stratification. Restricted stratification limited the number of stratifications senior raters could give to their master sergeant and senior master sergeant promotion eligible populations to the top 10 and 20 percent, respectively. <br />
In March, 1,467 Airmen were selected for promotion to senior master sergeant at a 12.3 percent selection rate &ndash; a significant increase from last year&rsquo;s rate of 8.75 percent. About 57 percent of those with a stratification were selected, while 5 percent of those without one were selected. Overall, 32 percent of all selects, about 470, did not receive a stratification.<br />
In November, 525 Airmen were selected for promotion to chief master sergeant at a 20.8 percent overall selection rate &ndash; also an increase from last year&rsquo;s rate of 18.9 percent. About 54 percent of those with a stratification were selected, while about 7 percent of those without one were selected. Overall, 23 percent of all selects, about 120, did not receive a stratification.<br />
&ldquo;The results clearly highlight the positive effects forced distribution and restricted stratification have on our enlisted evaluation and promotion systems,&rdquo; Cody said. &ldquo;Job performance remains the most important factor when considering Airmen for promotion, and our top performers now have the advantage toward promotion they deserve.&rdquo; <br />
To view the 2016 promotion selection lists, visit the <a href="https://gum-crm.csd.disa.mil/app/categories/p/8%2C10/c/656" target="_blank">myPers enlisted promotion page</a>. For more information about Air Force personnel programs go to the <a href="https://mypers.af.mil/" target="_blank">myPers website</a>. Individuals who do not have a myPers account can request one by following the instructions on the <a href="http://www.retirees.af.mil/mypers/index.asp" target="_blank">Air Force Retirees Services website</a>.
Capt. Matthew Roland, of the 23rd Special Tactics Squadron, posthumously received the Silver Star on June 1 for actions taken during an ambush Aug. 26, 2015, in Afghanistan. Roland's family accepted the decoration on behalf of the fallen special tactics officer.
CONTRACTS AIR FORCE L-3 Communications, Vertex Aerospace LLC (L-3), Madison, Mississippi, has been awarded a $1,910,525,014 indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract for KC/KDC-10 airframe contractor logistics support. Contractor will provide logistics integration and support to include contractor operated and maintained base supply,
A mother watched as her 2-year-old, blonde-haired, blue-eyed boy stood in the middle of Arlington National Cemetery on Memorial Day, hugging the gravestone of his father who had died five months prior. With heavy hearts, the two journeyed from Fort Campbell, Kentucky, to meet others who understood their loss.
CONTRACTS AIR FORCE The Boeing Co., doing business as Boeing Defense Space and Security, St. Louis, Missouri, has been awarded a not-to-exceed $3,205,563,047 fixed-price, incentive-firm, indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract modification (00009) to previously awarded contract FA8213-15-D-0002 for Joint Direct Attack Munition (JDAM)
The Air Force’s top enlisted leader addressed the new enlisted performance report and gave insight to feedback he’s received during his latest edition of CHIEFchat at the Defense Media Activity on Fort George G. Meade. Chief Master Sgt. of the Air Force James A. Cody encouraged Airmen to forget about the old EPR system and to embrace the new.
The Air Force released a flight plan directing development activity as a result of a yearlong study focused on developing capability options to ensure joint force air superiority in 2030 and beyond.
CONTRACTS NAVY Raytheon Co., Integrated Defense Systems, Marlborough, Massachusetts, is being awarded a $365,848,801 fixed-price-incentive, cost-plus-fixed-fee contract for the production of Aegis Weapon System AN/SPY-1D(V) Radar Transmitter Group, Missile Fire Control System MK 99 equipment, and associated engineering services. This contract
An Army systems engineer brought more than 80 Airmen, Soldiers, Sailors, Marines and civilians from around the National Capital Region together May 24-26 to raise 675 American flags at the Pentagon in honor of Memorial Day.
<span>This week's photos feature Airmen from around the globe involved in activities supporting expeditionary operations and defending America. This weekly feature showcases the men and women of the Air Force.</span>
Imagine being at the cusp of the world, where everything flat warps and the earth’s curvature begins to appear. <br /><br />Looking around on a bright and sunny day, the sky is a brilliant blue. The blue eventually turns to black as space comes within reach.<br /><br />This is the view U-2 pilots like Maj. Jack Nelson witness each time they fly -- they get to see the world from a different perspective. It can be a pleasant experience when all goes well, but not when dealing with an in-flight emergency. <br /><br />Nelson was flying high above the earth when the three multi-function displays that provide the information for the autopilot, navigation, primary heading and reference systems stopped working. To get home safely, he had to troubleshoot the issue while flying. <br /><br />“Every aviator knows when you step out to a mission, there is an element of risk,” Nelson said. “There’s always risk that we accept. A lot of pilots don’t like to talk about it, and we don’t always want to think about it, but it’s definitely something that’s out there. Flying planes is a risky business, but it’s really great to know you have one of the best teams in the world that’s got your back when you are out there flying and something does go wrong.” <br /><br />Nelson was able to reset the multi-function display; however, that wasn’t the end of his troubles. Shortly after the reset, the aircraft’s environmental control system malfunctioned, leaving the pilot flying in sub-zero temperatures.<br /><br />After landing, Nelson reflected on the fact that there was a huge team of Airmen, civilians and contractors working overtime to get him home safely, many of whom greeted him on the flightline.<br /><br />“Seeing how much they cared, their commitment and how hard they were working to try and find a solution was really cool,” Nelson said.<br />For his efforts, Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Mark A. Welsh III presented Nelson with the 2015 Koren Kolligian Jr. Trophy during a ceremony May 25 at the Pentagon.<br /><br />The annual award, first presented in 1958, is given to an Air Force aircrew member who displays extraordinary skill, alertness and ingenuity in averting or minimizing the seriousness of a flight mishap.<br /><br />“It’s about taking a situation that’s not supposed to occur and turning it into normal, or at least as normal as you can get. For 59 years now, it’s 59 averted catastrophes; it’s 59 (intense) moments that became calm at some point. It’s 59 pilots or aircrew that came home to their families who might not have if they hadn’t been as prepared as they were,” Welsh said. “That’s what this award is all about. It’s real simple, and yet it’s magnificent.”<br /><br />The award’s namesake, 1st Lt. Koren Kolligian Jr., was declared missing in the line of duty when his T-33 Shooting Star disappeared off the coast of California in 1955.<br /><br />The Kolligian family attends and supports the award presentation every year, creating long-lasting friendships which are on display for all to see in three sets of photo albums. The family takes the citation and photos from the ceremony every year and places it in an album for the following year’s attendees to see.<br /><br />“Since 1958 our family has been honored to be invited to the Pentagon,” said Koren Kolligian II, Lt. Kolligian’s nephew. “Every year we get to meet remarkable pilots, spending time with them and their families, sharing stories and creating friendships. Coming here every year is a powerful reminder of how truly fortunate we are to be Americans. We leave energized, infused with the pride, professionalism and dedication of everyone we meet throughout the day. We are appreciative and thankful to the men and women who ensure this ceremony continues to inspire all who attend.”<br /><br />Nelson, a former wing safety officer, put his years of training and experience to the test, remaining calm under intense pressure. <br /><br />"Our safety record in the Air Force is grounded on Airmen taking action based on training, experience and instinct to overcome challenges in mission accomplishment,” said Maj. Gen. Andrew M. Mueller, the Air Force chief of safety. “Skill, alertness and ingenuity are the hallmarks of our Kolligian award winners, and can often make the difference in the severity of a mishap. Maj. Jack Nelson was able to utilize all of these traits to respond to a unique and dangerous in-flight event. I am proud to stand with the Air Force chief of staff and the Kolligian family as this Air Force award is given.”<br /><br />“Alone and unafraid” is a common term used in the U-2 enterprise. Think about being in an aircraft barely large enough to stretch your legs in, on the cusp of space, looking down on Earth can be daunting. However, Nelson said he was never alone. He had a team who assisted him in one of the most difficult days of his life.
KC-46 Pegasus aircraft are now expected to arrive at their first basing locations by late summer or early fall 2017. <br /><br />The KC-46 was most recently scheduled for a spring 2017 arrival at Altus Air Force Base, Oklahoma, the first formal training unit location; and McConnell AFB, Kansas, the first active duty-led Pegasus main operating base. But after a schedule risk assessment, Air Force officials determined the fielding timeline needed to be extended. <br /><br />Brig. Gen. Duke Richardson, the program executive officer for tankers, said, “Technical challenges with boom design and issues with certification of the centerline drogue system and wing air refueling pods have driven delays to low rate production approval and initial aircraft deliveries.<br /><br />“Throughout KC-46 development, the Air Force remained cautiously optimistic that Boeing would quickly address these issues and meet the original goal,” he continued. “However, we understand that no major procurement program is without challenges and the Air Force remains committed to ensuring all aircraft are delivered as technically required.”<br /> <br />The multi-year tanker procurement program remains one of the service's top priorities and the Air Force will continue to work with Boeing to find ways to mitigate delays.<br /><br />“The Air Force considers the KC-46 a critical capability and it's important to take the time necessary to get it right,” Richardson said. “There is no increased cost to the government as a result of these changes.” <br /><br />Boeing continues to work on a solution to address the higher than expected boom axial loads recorded during C-17 Globemaster III air refueling demonstration flights.<br /><br />The government now expects to make a low rate initial production decision, known as a Milestone C, in August 2016 to allow Boeing additional time to fix the loads issue and accomplish the remaining aerial refueling demonstrations with the required C-17 and A-10 Thunderbolt II aircraft. Following a successful decision, the Air Force will immediately award a contract for the first two production lots, followed by Lot 3 in January 2017. <br /><br />The KC-46A will provide improved capabilities, including boom and drogue refueling on the same sortie, worldwide navigation and communication, cargo capacity on the entire main deck floor, receiver air refueling, improved force protection and survivability, and multi-point air refueling capability.<br /><br />At this time, aircraft deliveries to Pease Air National Guard Base, New Hampshire, remain unchanged at spring 2018.
CONTRACTS NAVY Honeywell Technology Solutions Inc., Jacksonville, Florida, is being awarded $74,184,286 for modification P00038 to previously awarded cost-plus-award-fee, indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract (M67004-09-D-0020) to exercise option year eight for prepositioning and Marine Corps logistics support services for Blount Island
CONTRACTS NAVY L-3 Communications Vertex Aerospace, Madison, Mississippi, is being awarded a $302,208,932 firm-fixed price, indefinite-delivery requirements contract for logistics services in support of the C-12 utility lift aircraft, including post-production, full commercial-type aircraft maintenance, logistics support, and materials for Marine