LAUGHLIN AIR FORCE BASE, Texas --
Airman 1st Class Nachelle Vail, 47th Flying Training Wing Command Post emergency actions controller, was chosen by wing leadership to be the “XLer” of the week, for the week of July 30, 2018, at Laughlin Air Force Base, Texas.
The “XLer” award, presented by Col. Charlie Velino, 47th Flying Training Wing commander, is given to those who consistently make outstanding contributions to their unit and the Laughlin mission.
Vail, a key component for Air Education and Training Command’s exercise, was able to validate and process nine messages from the secretary of defense, giving Laughlin a 100 percent mission capable rating.
“AETC will conduct exercises, sent out to test the proficiency of the controllers,” Vail said. “I would receive the messages then disseminate them to figure out ‘Does this apply to Laughlin,’ going through the checklist procedures and then depending on what they’re asking for we may have to submit a response back to AETC.”
She was also able to respond to five flight emergencies and issue 41 weather notifications which is key to Laughlin, having one of the top 10 busiest airfields in the Air Force.
“Another [weather notification] that helps keep Airmen, maintenance personnel and civilians that work outside would be the wet bulb temperature notification,” Vail said. “We’re in Texas, and it’s hot a lot of times. We’re going to reach those red flags and black flags – that’s when you really need to start paying attention to water consumption and how much energy you’re exerting.”
Vail went the extra mile to take and complete 37 hours of Federal Emergency Management Agency courses to better enhance her skills in her day-to-day life at work.
“Me taking those FEMA courses gives me a broader knowledge when it comes to emergency and response,” Vail said. “Even though you may not necessarily have to take some courses, when we’re dealing with emergency response issues for almost the majority of our jobs, it goes hand-in-hand.”
Vail’s very demanding job requires her to be on her best performance to ensure Laughlin’s safety. Vail has gone above and beyond her expectations to earn this week’s “XLer” of the week award.
“A lot of awards target a single person but there’s nothing that I can say that I have done where it’s been myself,” Vail said. “Whether I’ve done it and I’ve had the support of other people, or they’ve helped me along the way, it’s always a team effort.”