Laughlin hosts first Remote and Isolated CONUS Installation (RICI) Conference

  • Published
  • By Capt. Christine Del Aguila
  • 47th Flying Training Wing Public Affairs

The 47th Flying training Wing hosted the first Remote and Isolated CONUS Installation Summit 30 April - 1 May 2024, gathering over 30 leaders from across remote and isolated bases in the United States. 

The goal of this historical first gathering aimed to create a strategic charter to present to senior Department of the Air Force and government leaders to tackle challenges and improve the quality of life for Airmen stationed at RICI bases.  

“Our objective of this summit is to define uniquely remote and isolated challenges and minimum acceptable quality of services to maintain mission assurance and quality of life,” said Col. Kevin A. Davidson, 47th Flying Training Wing commander.  

The summit included leadership from 19th Air Force, Laughlin AFB, Edwards AFB, Vandenberg Space Force Base, Cannon AFB, Grand Forks AFB, Holloman AFB, Creech AFB, Air Force Installation and Mission Support Center, Mountain Home AFB, Space Base Delta 1, Vance AFB, Altus AFB and Minot AFB. 

“Everyone here are doers,” said Chief Lester Largaespada, 47th Flying Training Wing command chief. “This is how history is made and things get done. It’s all about making life better for our Airmen, and that’s why we’re gathered here for two days to create this charter.” 

The summit kicked off with personnel getting a tour of Laughlin AFB, to view firsthand some best practices and challenges Laughlin experiences as a Remote and Isolated installation.  

“We deliberately chose to host the gathering for this first RICI summit,” said Davidson, “We wanted to show our fellow RICI bases what challenges we have had, and continue to have, and share how we get after them.” 

Each base then presented their wing mission statement, top three to five major challenges, best practices and innovative ideas, and their desired outcome of the summit.  

“All RICI bases possess common challenges to include Manpower, Healthcare, Food Sustainment and quality of life,” said Davidson.  

Day two featured discussions into barrier bubbles that each base experiences. At lunch, Laughlin civic leaders from across education, healthcare, real estate and food industries spoke to conference attendees about the relationship they have with the base and how they work to alleviate challenges that come with being in a remote, micro metropolitan area.  

“We are all here today to create a coalition that will inform our senior leaders how being a remote and isolated installation impacts our Airmen and our mission,” said Davidson.  

The end goal of the RICI coalition is to continuously collaborate and synchronize remote and isolated issues to inform policy and decision making.