AFRC civic leaders visit Dobbins ARB

  • Published
  • By Melony Bagwell

Members of the Air Force Reserve Command Civic Leader Program visited Dobbins Air Reserve Base, September 18, to gain a better understanding of current AFRC priorities, successes, and challenges.

Maj. Gen. Jeffrey Pennington, deputy commander of the Air Force Reserve Command, hosted the event centered around AFRC priorities “Ready Now” and “Transforming for the Future.”

 “Community support is invaluable to us,” said Pennington. “We are so fortunate to have such an amazing group of individuals advocating for us in their communities, to DoD senior leaders and on Capitol Hill.”

After a welcome briefing by Pennington, the civic leaders learned about the U.S. pacing challenge and defense strategy focused on China. Building on this, members from AFRC recruiting updated the civic leaders on recruiting and retention and AFRC efforts to retain talent from service members departing active duty and first-term accessions.

Capping off the Dobbins ARB portion of the event, the civic leaders experienced a hands-on opportunity to learn about the Transportation Proficiency Center. The center provides certification, contingency, upgrade training and contingency equipment support to Total Force Airmen in Civil Engineering, Aerial Port and Services.

TPC instructors with the 622nd Training Squadron put the civic leaders through the paces on an obstacle course where each member operated a 25K Halverson Loader and a 10K All Terrain Forklift.

“It was exciting visiting the TPC,” said Pam Younker, a civic leader with both the Air and Space Forces and AFRC and community development officer for Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta.  “It was great seeing how Airmen train at Dobbins.  The excellent preparation on the TPC equipment allows our Airmen to stay proficient in their daily missions and on deployments.”

The day concluded with a salute to Dobbins ARB by the Atlanta Braves.  Pennington threw out the ceremonial first pitch followed by Col. Michael Parks, commander, 94th Airlift Wing, announcing “play ball.” 1st Lt. Kristin Grissinger sang the National Anthem while 50 Airmen from Dobbins lined the field before the game. The game was also a culmination of many events that highlighted the 75th Anniversary of the Air Force Reserve Command. 

Events like this, play a crucial role in educating and informing civic leaders to enable them to advocate for our mission, provide trusted counsel and advice, and inform and educate the communities they live in. 

“My appointment to serve as a National Civic Leader for Lt. Gen. John P. Healy, commander of the Air Force Reserve Command, is a complete honor,” said Mayor LaRhonda Patrick of Warner Robins, Georgia.  “As an Air Force brat and a true supporter and admirer of the United States military, I have always dreamed of serving my country. Being afforded this once in a lifetime opportunity to advocate for initiatives benefiting Reservists and their families, provides a way for me to give back to my country in a small way.”