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  • Backyard gardening, learned the hard way

    Question: How many people does it take to plant a backyard bougainvillea? Answer: Fifteen firefighters, two Emergency Medical Services technicians, four fire trucks, one ambulance, one gas company emergency response vehicle, and a gas company employee!But only if you're like me and fail to plan accordingly by contacting the right people when
  • Reflections of a Combat Comptroller in Afghanistan

    In April 2011, I began a 365-day deployment to Camp Eggers in Kabul, Afghanistan. For the next year, I served as the Director, Comptroller and Programs Directorate (CJ8), NATO Training Mission-Afghanistan/Combined Security Transition Command-Afghanistan (NTM-A/CSTC-A), supporting our nation's interests in Operation ENDURING FREEDOM. State-side, I
  • The tyranny of 'now'

    Be careful what you wish for. George Bernard Shaw is famously quoted as saying, "There are two tragedies in life. One is not to get your heart's desire. The other is to get it." Our modern colloquial version of the sentiment is expressed in the proverb, "Be careful what you wish for; you might get it."In no aspect of our lives is this truer than in
  • Resiliency: A Leadership Issue

    There is good reason for all the talk about resiliency. Resilient people not only spring back from the curve balls of life, but actually grow stronger in the process. Too often, when we look to grow resiliency in the force, we turn only to our medical professionals and Chaplain Corps for help. Though these are key players, resiliency is first and
  • Leadership sends holiday wishes

    Another Christmas season has come upon us. This is a time of year filled with stories of hope, joy, and sacrifice. These types of stories do not often make the front page of the newspaper, but they are just as important. They remind us why we are here, and what we are fighting for. Charitable contributions increase dramatically during this season.
  • An Emotional Paycheck

    At the end of every two weeks, many count on getting a paycheck. At one time it was a piece of paper; now, it's an online bank statement. More importantly, a paycheck represents a contract with an employer: a fair day's wage for a fair day's work.Yet in today's world of significant and rapid change, an organization's resiliency is put to the test.
  • Win the Relationship

    Do you have that killer instinct to win business deals? Are you consistently able to beat down the competition to win arguments? Do you have the knack of always successfully making your point? If so, be wary.Long-term success in life and business depends less on how many arguments, battles and points you win and more often on how many relationships
  • When the Going Gets Tough

    I'd like to introduce you to a remarkable Airman. I've asked him for permission to share this chapter of his personal story so that you can get a glimpse of what I've witnessed over the past several months.Capt. Chris Trobough is an engineer assigned to the National Air and Space Intelligence Center. As a native of Alabama and a recovering Auburn
  • Sister Service Academies a Great Option for PME

    During my 27 years in the Air Force, I have served in all three components - active duty, Reserve, and Air National Guard. I attended Airman Leadership School (then called Non-Commissioned Officer Preparatory Course) in 1985 and the NCO Academy in 1995. When it came time to attend Senior NCO Professional Military Education (PME), I wanted to break
  • 'Fly, Fight and Win' ... adjusting my checklist

    When Gen. Norton Schwartz became our chief of staff, he made it clear that the Air Force mission was to "fly, fight and win as an integral part of the joint team."Fly, Fight and Win!With more than 4,000 hours in a half dozen different aircraft, I found this as music to my ears. It has always been easy for me to see how I fit in to the Air Force's