Proud to be part of Team Fairchild

  • Published
  • By Col. Robert Thomas
  • 92nd Air Refueling Wing Commander
First of all, I want to thank the men and women of Fairchild Air Force Base for the very warm welcome. I greatly appreciate all hard work and effort that went in to the change-of-command ceremony - it was absolutely outstanding. I'll remember that day for the rest of my career.

I am honored to have the opportunity to command the 92nd Air Refueling Wing. My family and I are proud to be part of Team Fairchild, and we are thrilled to be living in the beautiful Inland Northwest.

I'm sure many of you are wondering what your new wing commander is all about. Well, the read on me is pretty simple. It's the Air Force core values: Integrity first, service before self, and excellence in all we do. That's what I demand of myself, and that's what I will demand of you.
The wing's number one priority under my command is to ensure a successful and showcase association with the 141st Air Refueling Wing of the Washington Air National Guard. It is critical to the combat readiness of both wings, critical to Air Mobility Command and to the Air National Guard ... and ultimately, it is critical to the combat effectiveness of the Air Force and our ability to protect and serve the nation. I look forward to working with Col. Greg Bulkley and the 141st to make our base and our wings the best in the Air Force.

In the next few months it will also be critical to posture Team Fairchild for success on our upcoming Operational Readiness Inspection this spring. We just finished a great Operational Readiness Exercise that helped identify strengths and areas for improvement. While the ORI will require a significant amount of preparation and hard work, it will be worth it when we prove to the world what we already know: that this wing is the best in the Air Force! We're already well on the way to making that happen!

My wife Mari and I are also excited to meet and work with members of the local community as we endeavor to improve the already exceptional relationship that exists between Team Fairchild and the surrounding communities. I am committed to ensuring the base is an active community partner and a great neighbor on the West Plains.

Lastly and most importantly, I am committed to taking care of Airmen and their families; that's what we do every day in the Air Force. It's part of our organizational culture. At any given time, we have 400-plus Airmen deployed around the world, serving their country and defending freedom. I want them to be able to focus on their duty downrange, resting assured that their families back home are well cared for.

I look forward to meeting each and every one of you; again, I am honored to be your new Commander. Thank you for your hard work day every day ... I salute you for your service to the nation!