Let’s do this 21 SW

  • Published
  • By Col. Douglas A. Schiess
  • 21st Space Wing commander
Knights of the 21st Space Wing, thank you for the incredible welcome you extended to me and my family.  Everyone from the security forces Airman at the gate on my first entry onto base, to the lodging staff, the housing staff, my in-processing, the medical clinic, the communications team, the incredible change of command ceremony and finally The Club staff. Simply awesome!

Team, I know you have been very busy the past couple of months doing an incredible job; from the Unit Effectiveness Inspection capstone event, to running high-level base visits and conducting several wing-level ceremonies. I understand that and I've discussed this with the wing's senior leadership. I would like to say it will slow down a bit, and the leadership team will do our best to schedule for success, but we have a critical mission that directly affects our national security. We cover the world with our operations and we proudly stand guard 24/7 to protect our nation and its allies. No one does the mission better than the total-force men and women of the 21st Space Wing!

How do we do the mission? We do it as professionals. Professionalism is part of our organization, our Air Force culture and our way of life. We need to reinvigorate the ideals of professionalism in our everyday activities. Remember, you are a professional, on and off duty--be professional in everything you do.

The Core Values of the Air Force are something we should keep in mind at all times.  If we use them as a guide in what we do and how we act as Airmen they will never let us down. Let's look at the first one - Integrity. I recently realized that not all of us come into the Air Force with the same definition or understanding of Integrity. So, as leaders we need to be teaching our Airmen what it means for our Air Force. I believe integrity is always being honest, truthful, and doing the right thing regardless if someone is watching or not. Integrity is the foundation for us as Airmen.

Service before self is the attitude of a servant-leader. I am not fond of the "I" mentality. It's not about me, my, or mine, it's about us ... Team 21st Space Wing and Team Pete. It takes teamwork to be an effective and efficient wing. Teamwork is something that can be practiced at all levels by anyone; it's about helping each other out and looking out for each other. Working together to get the mission accomplished always makes us more effective.

Finally, there is Excellence. This is mandatory for us to get our mission done. Our mission of space superiority, mission and medical support requires us to do our jobs flawlessly. We owe it to our colleagues, teammates and national leaders to put our best foot forward every day. So do everything you do to the best of your abilities -- do it with excellence.

Honor, duty and respect are critical in accomplishing the mission as well. Even if we have not met we are part of the same team. We are brothers and sisters in arms and should be willing to lay down our lives for one another. We are a family, and we must treat all of our family members better than we want to be treated ourselves. I challenge you to treat each other with honor, dignity and respect.

What I look forward to the most is getting out and visiting with the 21st Space Wing professionals. As one of the Air Force's most geographically dispersed wings, it might take Chief Peele and me a little while to get across the globe, but we are going to do our best to see all of you in action. I am a down to earth person, so my battle cry for our wing is simple: "Let's do this!" If we join together, hold true to our core values and show honor, dignity and respect to each other then we can and will do this - our critical missions of space superiority, mission and medical support.