Science and Technology News

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

New Space Command Chief brings 'World Champion' outlook

by Senior Master Sgt. Dean J. Miller
Air Force Space Command Public Affairs


7/23/2013 - PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colo.  -- Air Force Space Command's newest Command Chief completed his first 30 days in office early this month having met with each AFSPC A-staff director, visited with Airmen of Colorado Springs and Alaska-based AFSPC units, the 45th Space Wing at Patrick AFB, Fla., and conducted his first AFSPC-Headquarters enlisted call.

Chief Master Sgt. Douglas McIntyre also attended a Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force-led enlisted board of directors meeting of major command command chiefs and represented AFSPC at a Senior NCO Academy Graduation and at the Pikes Peak or Bust Rodeo - the largest annual military community relations event in Colorado Springs.

While AFSPC missions and people are new to Chief McIntyre, the leadership responsibilities are not. Chief McIntyre has served the Air Force since 1984, was promoted to chief master sergeant in 2004, and served as a command chief at four previous postings. His last assignment was at U.S. Forces Japan and 5th Air Force, a dual-responsibility billet at Yokota Air Base, Japan.

After a whirlwind month, the Chief shared his first impressions of the command and its people.

Q: You've knocked out your first 30 days as AFSPC Command Chief, what are your first impressions?

A: Impressed would be the best word to start with. AFSPC is made up of a dedicated group of professionals who bring a one-of-a-kind mission set to our nation.

Q: How does AFSPC compare to other missions/Command Chief roles you've been responsible for?

A: First, let me say I'm humbled and blessed that General Shelton has given me the opportunity to represent the Enlisted Force of AFSPC. I've been a Command Chief in U.S. Air Forces Europe, Air Forces Central, Air Combat Command and Pacific Air Forces previously with different operations and missions, but nothing compares to the Space and Cyber mission set. Right now I'm in education and receive mode to understand our mission and get out and meet our Airmen.

Q: Please share a little about your personal background and your family.

A: The beginning of my career may be quite familiar to many of our Airmen, I worked in the supply career field and, to this day, I remember certain stock numbers. I never dreamed I would be a command chief. However, I'm grateful for all the early experiences of my career; I've always felt if you forget where you're from, you'll get lost where you're going. So, this is a very humbling opportunity for me.

My wife Tanya served four years active duty before going to nursing school; and both my daughters were born on the Air Force birthday two years apart. So you can truly call us an Air Force family. We are very happy to be part of the AFSPC team and the Colorado Springs community; I can't think of a better place for our family to be.

Q: Would you share a personal mentoring moment that made a significant difference in your life/career or that you made in another Airman's life/career?

A: One of my greatest challenges as a supervisor was when I was the wing command chief at Dyess AFB, Texas. I had a brand new executive assistant for a week and his eight-year-old son was killed by a drunk driver. I had just finished a year deployed as a command chief and nothing there hit me as hard as this did. This young man and I grew together to navigate through a very trying time. He thought I would replace him, but I told him this was the time the Air Force will rally around him and take care of his family. I can report today he has been promoted to technical sergeant and is doing very well. The courage he showed help me grow as a leader and father; Tech. Sgt. Matthew Mantanona taught me far more than I taught him, and that is the freshest memory I have of making a difference in an individual Airman's life.

Q: During your career, several mentors have invested in you; what advice have you received that made the greatest impact?

A: I've been fortunate to have some really great examples to follow during my career. It is really hard to point to just one piece of advice or one mentor. Some common threads have been integrity, credibility, caring for your Airmen and tying them into the mission for that sense of ownership. The best leaders I've worked around all had those attributes.

Q: You have a special responsibility to the commander, how would you characterize that mission and the associated challenges?

A: Our MAJCOM has a one-of-a-kind mission. The Space and Cyberspace capabilities we offer the joint force and the nation are not duplicated anywhere else. The mix of active duty, total force, civilians and contractors provide the expertise to make it all happen. My challenge is to represent our command the best I can. I have to make sure the enlisted corps understands the vision and mission of the command, and in turn update General Shelton on initiatives we are working on to develop the next generation of Airmen within the command and the Air Force.

Q: What do you believe makes AFSPC unique, and what do you see as your most daunting task as Command Chief? And how will you proceed?

A: As I mentioned previously, there is no other command that does what we do. Our Airmen who control and update GPS satellites for three billion global users is just the start. The cyber capabilities of 24th Air Force are amazing and so embedded into everything that we do it goes almost unnoticed because they do it so well. In addition to those things unique to the command, we are all American Airmen and we do what all Airmen do in our World Champion Air Force. We have AFSPC Airmen deployed to all corners of the globe making expeditionary missions happen, and at each AFSPC installation we have support Airmen enabling that one-of-a-kind mission set. Without the entire team it wouldn't work. My most daunting task is to work hard every day to remove any obstacles that I can so our Airmen can execute their mission. What most motivated Airmen want to do above all is to go out
and get the mission done. In these challenging times, leadership has to help them be innovative to get that done.

Q: You shared a unique perspective on the Air Force Core Values at your first Enlisted Call, could you please expand on that here?

A: Our Air Force is the youngest service by far and we are known to be adaptive and not bound by the rules of the ground. It should be expected we change, but one thing that hasn't changed since their inception are the core values. My belief is that we got them right the first time so there is no reason to change. Integrity. Service. Excellence. The only one that anyone
has ever challenged me on is "Excellence in All We Do." I get it; everyone isn't excellent in all that they do. The way I interrupt that negative thought is by emphasizing that we strive for excellence in all we do. The little blue book of old said "Excellence in all we do directs us to develop a sustained passion for continued improvement and innovation." The bottom
line is to strive to be the best Airman that you can be.

Q: In your new position, what do you see as your primary goal where developing the enlisted force is concerned?

A: Regardless of our individual specialties or mission, we are all Airmen. My primary goal is to concentrate on our core competencies as Airmen and work the different enlisted issues that impact readiness and development of the force.

Q: What initial messages/priorities do you have for AFSPC enlisted members?


A: I'm honored to be on your team and will do my best to represent you. Focus on the mission you have at hand and trust your leadership is working hard to navigate through these challenging times.

Q: Tell us about, "World Champion Airmen." What is that all about?

A: When I was a deployed command chief and we would watch different sports championships I would tell the Airmen that they too are champions. I continued to refine this message, and today, I talk about the team our Airmen belong to as the World Champion Air Force. Each day you get to put that uniform on you are part of a World Championship team because nobody can do what your Air Force can do.

Q: What is the most important advice you could give to those striving to navigate our Air Force during this turbulent time?

A: Don't worry about the things you can't control. Things change; we can't operate the way we did in the past. Focus on the mission at hand and look for smarter ways to get the mission done. Our force has been evolving my entire career and it will continue to do so long after I'm retired. As enlisted members we need to be part of that evolution and carry out change.

Q: Regarding the most serious issues of our day - sexual assault prevention and suicide prevention - what are your thoughts on these issues?

A: These issues involve Airmen getting hurt and as a leader you never want that. Sexual assault prevention is a top priority in the Defense Department. We have to be part of the solution in all these issues. In the basic sense it comes down to Airmen taking care of Airmen, in other words being a good Wingman. All of our senior leaders have said we must own the
sexual assault problem and be part of the solution. The Air Force has created a Special Victims' Counsel program to help victims navigate through the aftermath of an assault. The program assigns the victim a lawyer to be there from start to finish of their case to mitigate as many hardships as possible.

Our job is to prevent these issues in the first place. That starts with zero tolerance for inappropriate behavior in the work place or off duty. Little things build on each other to create an unhealthy environment. We must enforce a professional environment that sustains our core values so it is clear to all that predatory behavior isn't tolerated in our ranks.

Suicide is another issue that we must continue to focus on. Comprehensive Airmen Fitness isn't a suicide prevention program; in fact it isn't a program at all. It is meant to be a culture where Airmen use the spiritual, social, mental and physical pillars to create a healthier lifestyle. Most suicides come down to a loss of hope, and a feeling there is no way out. It's my belief if you use the four pillars of CAF it will create more things in your life to sustain you during difficult times. It is everyone's job to recognize the signs of suicide and act on those signs to help our fellow Airmen. Let me be clear: we need ALL of our Airmen -- one loss is one too many.

Q: Any final thoughts for us today?

A: Again, I'm humbled to have this opportunity to represent the AFSPC enlisted force. As I work with Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force Cody and the other MAJCOM command chiefs to chart the course for the enlisted force, I'll do my best to represent all of you. Thanks to you and your family for all you do for our World Champion Air Force and our nation.

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