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One of Col Gentile’s 2019 focus areas for our wing is strengthening relationships. He has asked each member of Team XL to bolster relationships with our families, friends, and the Airman around us to include our subordinates, our peers, and our bosses. Upon hearing this focus area, I was reminded of an enduring lesson in leadership and life: relationships matter. Relationships matter because they form the foundation of success. This is especially true here at Laughlin. Building combat-ready pilots is a team sport that requires the contribution of many. No one accomplishes our mission alone. Instead, strong relationships enable mission success.
Cooking with the commander
What talents are you blessed with? What hobbies do you love? How about sharing those with our Airmen? My husband, Chris, and I would often see Airmen in the commissary with only frozen pizza, chips and soda in their shopping carts. We would occasionally stop and chat with them about healthier options. The responses we received back were typically: “I don’t know how to cook.” We took this as an opportunity to share our gifts with our Airmen.
Commander's Corner: Doors of Opportunity
I am often asked, “Chief, what was the secret to your many achievements throughout your career?” To which I would respond with, “doors of opportunity,” which is not a secret. Former Chief Master Sgt. of the Air Force Robert Gaylor has been quoted saying that one of the keys to being successful is to take advantage of the opportunities when they come along. This is exactly what I was able to do, and the main reason that I joined the Air Force.
Commander's Corner: Memoires from an AF Reserve Commander
In 1998, the 96th FTS was reactivated at Laughlin AFB as the first Air Force Reserve unit to employ all three pilot training airframes (T-37, T-38, and T-1) as part of an integrated initiative supporting Undergraduate Pilot Training. Today, experienced and seasoned Citizen Airmen from the squadron serve side-by-side with their active duty counterparts instructing students in all three Laughlin airframes: the T-6, T-38 and T-1.
Commander's Corner: Together...We Are Laughlin
Hopefully by now you’ve heard me say it. ”We are Laughlin!” Sure, every now and then I get the “Da---Da-Da---Da---Da-Da-Da” (think Farmers Insurance commercial), and I’m okay with that. But more often than that I get a more serious question, “What does it mean?” Or better yet, “So what?” Both are fair questions, and hopefully after hearing what “We are Laughlin” means to me, both will be answered.
Importance of Feedback
The impact of feedback, both positive and negative, should not be underestimated. Every day, I talk to our Airmen – our officers, our enlisted, the hundreds of civilians, and the many family members who call Laughlin home – about their experiences here at the base. Not surprisingly, people have unpleasant experiences from time to time.
Commander's corner: Foul-weather leadership
Perhaps our ability to lead in difficult times is what matters most in command, or in general, leadership. Most people can probably do well in fair weather; you know the type – they show up to work on time, smile, get along with others, and report good metrics when everything is going well. But how do they (how do you) react during those seemingly intractable problems or unexpected crises?
Happiness is on purpose, not an accident
There are several elements to happiness but none more important, by far, than good relationships. In my career as a doctor when people are stripped of all they have and are, on their death beds, it’s all about relationships
Instant coffee -- a metaphor for life
This month, I mark 20 years of service to our beautiful nation of paved roads, unbelievable grocery stores, large movie theaters, awe-inspiring state and national parks, and delicious restaurants and food trucks.
Autopilot off, journey on
While preparing for our upcoming retirement, we’ve had the chance to look back through hundreds of old photos, each with its own memory, its own story. It made us realize how lucky our family has been. Throughout our Air Force journey, we’ve experienced opportunities and adventures that some people can only dream about.