Sharing the Air Force story is every Airman’s responsibility

  • Published
  • By Maj. Angela O'Connell
  • 92nd Air Refueling Wing Public Affairs
This is going to sound cliché, but when you look at the Air Force mission, amazing things really are being accomplished daily. When you are on the inside of the gate, it is hard to appreciate this because the workforce gets bogged down with emails, deadlines, temporary duty and deployments.

But, have you ever stopped to think of what people on the outside of the gate are thinking? The military is a world they don't understand, and sometimes only get a glimpse of at the movies. And, we all know how accurately Hollywood depicts the military!
To get to the point of this article, you need to first think back to when you were trying to decide what you wanted to do when you graduated from high school or college. What steered you towards the military?

Many of you came from a military family. But what about those of you who did not? Could it have been an influential speaker or an amazing experience at a local air show that swayed you? Either way, you are in uniform today because someone or something inspired you to be a part of the world's best Air Force.

It is now time to think about being that inspirational person to others. The 92nd Air Refueling Wing Public Affairs Office does its best daily to tell the Air Force story, but nothing is more effective than first-hand experts and accounts.

The PA office frequently receives requests for speakers. From wanting an Airman to speak about the principles of flight, to having an Air Force athlete help out at a sports clinic, requests vary from general interests to specific requests. The PA office has sent individuals to schools, universities, city governments, museums, social clubs, career days, industry, hospitals, job fairs...the list is endless. Unfortunately, the list of speakers is not. Considering Fairchild employs more than 3,500 workers, you wouldn't think that would be the case.

The good news is that anyone can become a part of the Speakers Bureau. This includes military, civilians, Reserve and retirees. There is also no limit on rank. The only criterion is that you must feel comfortable speaking in front of groups and project a positive image.

The groups that request speakers from Fairchild vary in their understanding of the military. Some groups know nothing about the Air Force and the military in general. Explaining the Air Force and Fairchild's mission helps ensure the continued support and funding for base programs from our local communities and enhances recruiting.

This is a terrific opportunity to promote your organization, make your knowledge available to the public and to have an impact in the community. The speaking engagements are assigned strictly on a voluntary basis.

If you are interested in becoming a member of the Speakers Bureau, please notify your commander to have them forward your name to the Public Affairs office. If you would like more information on the program, please contact 2nd Lt. Casey Osborne at 247-5705 or

Whether you are a maintainer, flyer or doctor, you are first and foremost an Airman. As Airmen, one of your roles is to share the responsibility of telling the Air Force story.