"For the good of the Air Force, for the good of the armed services and for the good of our country, I urge you to reject convention and careerism..." - Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, Maxwell AFB, April 21, 2008
"...if as an officer you don't tell blunt truths — or create an environment where candor is encouraged — then you've done yourself and the institution a disservice." - Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, West Point, April 22, 2008
"You will need to challenge conventional wisdom and call things like you see them to subordinates and superiors alike." - Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, United States Air Force Academy, March 4, 2011
There are several reasons for this blog. First, I believe I have something to contribute to an important discussion. Second, traditional military avenues of discussion (PME) have proven ineffective methods for dialogue. Third, the Air Force "Emerging Technologies" division of Public Affairs released instructional guidance for "each Airman to act as a communicator to be the voice of the Air Force in the blogosphere" while noting "there are movements within DoD to explore a broader, more aggressive and holistic approach... to integrate communicators" and stating, "the rules of the game have clearly changed." Finally, this blog served as a sounding board for a master's thesis I have completed entitled, "The Smartest Guys in the Room and the Best of the Best." The thesis examines the culture of Enron and Air Force fighter pilot culture, finds similarities, and makes recommendations. In accordance with the PA guidelines mentioned above, this blog seeks to provide one personal, transparent, credible perspective -- among other perspectives online -- with the goal of furthering conversation to help foster a stronger, more relevant Air Force. The intent of this blog is to be transparent and is not used to hide identity. Those wishing to know my identity may email me from my profile link from an official government email address and my identity will be provided. Readers are encouraged to post comments or email me if they think form or substance in this blog is an issue. All criticism is welcomed. For more info on blogging and the Air Force please see my first blog post. The postings on this site are my own and don't necessarily represent Air Force positions, strategies or opinions.
I am an Air Force pilot and field grade officer. I grew up an Air Force dependent (my father retired a CMSgt after 32 years active duty). I have eight deployments to OEF/OIF, more than a thousand combat flight hours, seven Air Medals and a Distinguished Flying Cross for valor. I have a B.A. in religion from the Florida State University. My wife is a Harvard educated former Air Force intelligence officer turned civilian lawyer and Air Force Reserve JAG. My father, mother, and sister all work for the Air Force as contractors or government employees.