Letter from the Chief

  • Published
  • By Chief Master Sgt. Paul Sikora
  • 92nd Air Refueling Wing command chief
This will be the first weekly column I will be writing for our on-line paper, and I want to thank both the Public Affairs staff and Col. Thomas Sharpy, 92nd Air Refueling Wing commander, for giving me this opportunity to communicate with you.

They say that first impressions are everything, and I have to tell you I have been overwhelmed with what I have seen during my first three weeks here. We are working hard supporting our expeditionary and home station roles, providing world-class support to the men and women who work on Fairchild, and are embraced by our local community. I am truly honored to be joining such a first-rate team!

We had two significant enlisted events this last week, the technical and master sergeant promotion release and the All Schools graduation. Congratulations to the almost 200 Team Fairchild members that were selected for promotion. Any promotion is a significant milestone in your careers, but you couldn't have done it without the support of your co-workers and families, so please be sure to thank them for their help. And most importantly remember that the Air Force selects you for promotion based on your potential to assume increased responsibility. This means that you haven't arrived - your journey in this new grade has just begun. It's an awesome responsibility that shouldn't be taken lightly.

Additionally, our education office teamed together with the local colleges to do an All Schools graduation, where 227 members of our team received college degrees. Several years ago the Chief of Staff of the Air Force asked our enlisted force to pursue higher education to make us a smarter, more capable force, and these graduates have done that.

For those still contemplating school I say go for it! A college degree makes you a more competent leader, and I believe you owe it to those you supervise and train to be the very best you can be to help serve them. Right now only 46 percent of our base senior NCOs have at least an Associates Degree. That means we have room for a 54-percent improvement toward becoming better leaders. This will be one of my key messages during my assignment here.

Lastly, I believe the command chief position was created to represent the enlisted force to our commanders, community and higher headquarters. Therefore I am here to serve you, not the other way around. So please don't be shy about letting me know what is on your mind and what I can do to help solve our problems ... I need all of you to help me so I can help you! Have a great week. I'm proud to serve you!

You all have my deepest respect.