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Commander's Comments - May 2015 UTA

JOINT BASE ELMENDORF-RICHARDSON, Alaska -- 477th Fighter Group Warriors,

Welcome to the May UTA!

April was incredibly productive and I thank you for your efforts, let's continue that mindset into the May UTA.

Chief Briner and I had the opportunity to attend the AFRC commander and chief's conference in April. I wanted to pass a few items from Lt. Gen. Jackson and Chief Master Sgt. Kirksey.

First is the budget situation. Our numbered Air Force and the command fully realize the impacts an uncertain budget and limited funding have on our mission accomplishment. With some congressional help, Air Force Reserve Command was able to secure funding for the NAF's and eventually down to us. I can say with certainty that our requests were heard and we were afforded funds that will allow us to continue to operate, train our Airmen, and prepare our leaders through schools, classes and development programs.

Next is enlisted professional development. Kirksey and our enlisted leadership are currently focused on two high-priority EPME topics: our transformation to the three-phase EPME program and our transition to the enlisted evaluation system.

The three-phase EPME program was developed as a direct result of the significant increase in expectations of our enlisted leaders over the last decade. These updated courses require a more rigorous approach focused on learning concepts and principals rather than memorization and simple questions. 

In addition, the new EES will eliminate the need for a change of reporting official and will create a static closeout date for each enlisted rank E-5 to E-9.  The philosophy behind this was to build an easier, more predictable evaluation program based on the grade of the individual, rather than his or her independent evaluation timeframe.

Finally, readiness is still a command emphasis item. I ask that you take time this UTA and the June UTA to ensure your physical training test, advanced distance learning system, dental and physical health assessment are up to date.  We do not have a July UTA so please help your commanders and senior leadership by being proactive in getting this done.

Thanks again for your service, leadership and making the unit one of the best in AFRC.  Have a great UTA!