Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Doolittle Raider Tom Griffin Passes

The Air Force Association would like to express our sincere condolences on the recent passing of Doolittle Raider Tom Griffin. We had the honor of knowing him and the greatest respect for his role in the daring raid over Tokyo during World War II. The Doolittle Raiders were formed as part of a secret mission in response to the bombing of Pearl Harbor. Their plan was to bomb targets in Tokyo and proceed to China, their designated rendezvous location, for safe landing.

In April 1942, four months after the devastating attack on Pearl Harbor that launched the United States into World War II, 16 B-25 Mitchell bombers took off from the USS Hornet headed for Japan. Retired Major Griffin was a navigator on B-25 No. 9 during the raid. The courage and determination illustrated by him and his fellow raiders will forever be remembered. In 2009, he was a recipient of AFA’s Lifetime Achievement Award, which recognizes not a single achievement, but a lifetime of work in the advancement of aerospace. Our deepest sympathy is with his family and friends. His service to our country should be an example for all of us.

Joseph Sutter presents retired Maj. Thomas Griffin and retired Lt. Col. Richard Cole the
Lifetime Achievement Award at the Air Force Anniversary Dinner, Sept 16, 2009.

Winter 2012/2012 CAP Educator Grants

AFA recently awarded 20 squadrons with the Civil Air Patrol Educator Grant, an education initiative funded by AFA and managed by the Civil Air Patrol Headquarters.
The CAP Educator Grants are each up to $250, and provided to teachers who are members of either the Air Force Association or the Civil Air Patrol. This initiative funds classroom activities or materials that benefit the entire group of students and promote knowledge of aerospace power. From designing model airplanes and launching rockets to visiting Air Traffic Control towers and bases, AFA and CAP are teaming up to help promote aerospace education and the pivotal role aerospace power plays in national security. Grants can be applied toward field trips to aerospace museums or Air Force bases, or for books, DVDs or videotapes on aerospace topics.
“I am proud of the continued partnership between the Air Force Association and Civil Air Patrol to promote educational opportunities for students in STEM and aerospace studies,” said Jerry White, Vice Chairman of the Board for Aerospace Education. “The need for skilled individuals in aerospace fields will continue to grow, and AFA is proud to support the CAP programs that provide tools and develop skills for upcoming generations. The AFA aerospace education grants will allow CAP to continue to find new and innovative ways of engaging students and encouraging them to pursue their studies.”
Squadrons receiving AFA Grants are as follows:
  • Bangor State Belt Composite Squadron, Bangor, Pennsylvania
  • Black Sheep Senior Squadron, Englewood, Colorado
  • Cedar Rapids Composite Squadron, Cedar Rapids, Iowa
  • Col Johnnie Pantanelli Composite Squadron, Yorktown Heights, New York
  • Crow Wings Squadron, Brainerd, Minnesota
  • Floyd Bennett Composite Squadron, Garden City, New York
  • Gainesville Composite Squadron, Gainesville, Florida
  • Iona CAP Flight, Alto, Michigan
  • Jacksonville Composite Squadron, Jacksonville, Florida
  • La Crosse Composite Squadron, La Crosse, Wisconsin
  • Naples Senior Squadron, Naples, Florida
  • Phoenix Composite Squadron, New York, New York
  • Prince William Composite Squadron, Manassas, Virginia
  • Sheridan Cadet Squadron, Sheridan, Indiana
  • Steven Schiller Composite Squadron, Burnt Hills, New York
  • Southeast Group, Delavan, Wisconsin
  • Tehachapi Composite Squadron, Tehachapi, California
  • Thunderbird Composite Squadron, Oakley, Utah
  • Washington County Composite Squadron, Hillsboro, Oregon
  • Wylie Apte Cadet Squadron, Conway, New Hampshire
 Congratulations to them all!

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

March Air Force Breakfast Session: Deputy Chief of Staff for Strategic Plans and Programs

AFA is proud to welcome Lt. Gen. Michael R. Moeller, Deputy Chief of Staff for Strategic Plans and Programs, Headquarters U.S. Air Force, as the guest speaker for the next month’s AFA Air Force Breakfast Program. The breakfast will be held on Tuesday, March 12, 2013, from 7:00 a.m. – 9:00 a.m. at the Crystal City Marriott in Arlington, Virginia.

General Moeller leads the development and integration of the Air Force’s long-range plans and the five-year, $604 Billion U.S. Air Force Future Years Defense Program to ensure the Air Force’s ability to build and employ effective air, space and cyber forces to achieve national defense objectives.

Prior to his current assignment, Moeller was the U.S. Security Coordinator, Israel-Palestinian Authority, U.S. Department of State, Tel Aviv, Israel. His staff experience includes tours with the Secretary of the Air Force Staff Group and in the Checkmate Division on the Air Staff; in the Plans and Policy Directorate of the Joint Staff; and as the Director of Strategy, Plans and Policy for U.S. Southern Command and also for U.S. Central Command.

Moeller is a command pilot with more than 4,440 flying hours and 670 combat hours for operations Desert Storm, Enduring and Iraqi Freedom.

Check out the event page here:

Sequestration in the News

The deadline for striking a deal to prevent sequestration from taking place is now less than a week away. While AFA is been working to spread the word and convince key players of the devastating effects it could have for rmonths, we've been seeing many articles and reports emerge on the issue.

This weekend, the White House released State-by-State reports on the impacts of the sequester:

Also, AFA members across the country are spreading the word in their communities via opinion editorials to their community papers. Check out a few of them here:

Monday, February 25, 2013

29th Air Warfare Symposium Wrap-Up

AFA’s 29th Air Warfare Symposium and Technology Exposition just wrapped up, and we are proud to say that it was another great event! This year, it was themed “Airmen, Innovation, Mission” and brought together Air Force leadership, industry experts, academia and current event specialists from around the world to discuss the issues and challenges facing America and the aerospace community today. The agenda included addresses by Secretary of the Air Force Michael Donley, Chief of Staff of the Air Force General Mark Welsh and Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force James Cody.

If you weren’t able to make it, check out some of the audio transcripts we’ve been able to upload here:

Also, Air Force Magazine's Daily Report covered the event, so check out its archives:

AFA would like to thank everyone that attended, and we look forward to seeing you at next year’s Symposium and Exposition on February 20-21, 2014.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Former Secretaries of the Air Force Lead Panel at the Air Force Association’s Annual Air Warfare Symposium and Technology Exposition

AFA's annual winter event -- the Air Warfare Symposium and Technology Exposition -- is just one week away, so register today to attend! 
Featured on the exceptional agenda scheduled at the 29th Air Warfare Symposium is a panel led by three former Secretaries of the Air Force, Secretaries Whit Peters, James Roche and Michael Wynne.
As the 19th, 20th and 21st Secretaries of the Air Force, Secretaries Peters, Roche and Wynne collectively led the Air Force from 1999-2008. They will join conference attendees in an unprecedented conversation—discussing current challenges facing the Service and why the Air Force truly stands as the indispensible force. Their sage wisdom and unique perspectives will afford a most interesting dialogue. 

The 2013 Air Warfare Symposium will be held February 20-22, at the Rosen Shingle Creek Hotel in Orlando, Florida. It promises to bring together Air Force leadership, industry experts, academia and current aerospace specialists, including the Secretary of the Air Force, the Chief of Staff of the Air Force and the Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force. 

Don’t miss this great panel which will take place on February 22nd from 10:00 a.m. – 10:50 a.m. [The full symposium agenda can be found

Note: Symposium registration fees are waived for all Department of Defense civilian employees and all uniformed military personnel.

isit our website at for more information on this important event as well as a complete listing of our exhibitors and sponsors.

Friday, February 8, 2013

Note from AFA: Sequestration

As we get closer to March 1st, we approach our #1 enemy – namely ourselves. Without Congressional and Presidential action, automatic budget cuts – called sequestration – of $1.2 Trillion will kick in. The amount of the reduction in the defense budget will be about $55B a year until 2021 with 42.7B in the remaining seven months of this year. This cut will be on top of the $50B per year reduction that has already occurred. The Air Force share of this hit is $12.4B over the seven months remaining in the Fiscal Year.

The short-term effects are devastating. Up to 800,000 DOD employees could be put on a four-day work week starting in April resulting in reduced pay for each person. Flight hours will have to be reduced by a third, weapon system sustainment by as much as 18% and aircraft availability and mission capable rates will fall significantly. The impact nationally according to a 2012 study by Dr. Stephen Fuller at George Mason University is 2 million jobs lost. I cannot find one example where we cut defense to this degree while, at the same time, fighting a war. I frequently remind people the Preamble to the Constitution says “ … provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare …” And, in reality, the verbs (at least here in Washington) seem to be swapped. We need to have our voices heard on the effects of sequestration and the ongoing continuing resolution on our national defense and military readiness. Secretary Panetta stated as a result of sequestration, “instead of being a first rate power in the world, we’d turn into a second rate power.” It is irresponsible to let this happen after so much sacrifice.

So, we ask of you all to please let your voices be heard. We need to help let the American people known the negative effects on sequestration on national security and the hardships this will cause.

We have included a link to the Air Force briefing slides on the short and long term effects of sequestration. (See:

Also here are Talking Points on the Effects of Sequestration. (See:

The Aerospace Industries Association (AIA) conducted a study showing aerospace’s state-by-state impact. The study, completed by Deloitte and commissioned by the AIA, found that the industry accounts for 2.23 percent of the U.S.’s gross domestic product (GDP), resulting in $7.2 billion in direct corporate and sales taxes in 2010 and a total of $37.8 billion in tax revenue if personal income taxes from the estimated 3.53 million associated employees nationwide are included. It is also responsible for about $50B in positive trade balance for the US. The study can be found here:

Finally, I want to tell you that the Service chiefs are schedule to testify to the SACS about sequestration next Tuesday at 0930.

Air Force Chief of Staff General Mark Welsh delved into these points at a recent press conference: “Strategic agility and responsiveness requires a high state of readiness for airmen, equipment—and that’s based on training. And sacrificing that readiness really sacrifices the strategic advantage of airpower.”

For your consideration.

Monday, February 4, 2013

AFA Celebrates 67th Birthday

Today, the Air Force Association celebrates its 67th birthday. With more than 200 chapters and over 105,000 members worldwide, we remain committed to promoting a dominant United States Air Force and a strong national defense.

AFA is rooted in the legacy of General Billy Mitchell, grown from the efforts of airpower pioneers like Generals Hap Arnold and Jimmy Doolittle, and upheld by the men and women who believe in and support the role of airpower in defending our country and supporting allies.

In April 1945, General Arnold first mentioned the need for an independent civilian organization to argue the case for military preparedness and the importance of airpower. By February 4, 1946, AFA was incorporated in Washington, DC, with Jimmy Doolittle as the first national president. 

 Since then, AFA has spanned the age of airpower, the missile era, the conquest of space, the nuclear age, the post-Cold War period and the advent of cyberspace. Our position as the force behind of the Force is one we carry honorably and take seriously as we have, for 67 years, consistently worked to strengthen American aerospace power to help maintain national security, protect and support allies, partners and friends, and encourage peace throughout the globe. As we once again find our current state shadowed by global threats, hostile nations, proliferation of terrorism, budget instabilities and fiscal constraints, we must dig deeper and work harder to help tell the Air Force story, of the courage and sacrifice of our Airmen, of the necessity and vitality of their missions, and of the ambition and innovation in their visions.

Throughout the past 67 years, the AFA mission hasn’t strayed. We are still committed to educating the public on the critical need for unmatched aerospace power and a technically superior workforce to ensure U.S. national security; advocating for aerospace power and STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) education; and supporting the total Air Force family, and promote aerospace education.

So thank you all for the 67 years of continued support – we look forward to the great work we all can do together in the many years to come!

Friday, February 1, 2013

CyberPatriot Names Finalists in National Competition

After three impressive preliminary rounds, 28 teams of high school students have advanced to the National Finals Competition of the nation’s largest and fastest growing high school cyber defense competition – CyberPatriot V!
This year’s finalists represent Alabama, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Missouri, New Mexico, Ohio, South Dakota, Texas, and Virginia. Two teams from Manitoba, Canada will also compete at the National Finals Competition as International Exhibition Teams.
CyberPatriot—The National High School Cyber Defense Competition, an education initiative established by the Air Force Association, is a one-of-a-kind cyber defense competition designed to inspire students to consider science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields in their studies. The unique structure helps to prepare college- and career-ready students with not just technical skills, but also invaluable experience in teamwork, leadership, and critical-thinking. Competitors also gain great insights and technical expertise from industry leaders, including CyberPatriot’s presenting sponsor the Northrop Grumman Foundation.
Congratulations to the following advancing All Service Division teams:
  • Big Sioux Composite Squadron, Civil Air Patrol, Brookings, South Dakota
  • East Central High School, Army JROTC, San Antonio, Texas
  • John Jay High School, Air Force JROTC, San Antonio, Texas
  • Medina Valley High School, Air Force JROTC, Castroville, Texas
  • Colorado Springs Cadet Squadron, Civil Air Patrol, Colorado Springs, Colorado
  • Covington High School, Navy JROTC, Covington, Louisiana
  • Flour Bluff High School, Navy JROTC, Corpus Christi, Texas
  • Fort Fisher Division 113FOR, Naval Sea Cadet Corps, San Diego, California
  • La Cueva High School, U.S. Marine Corps JROTC, Albuquerque, New Mexico
  • Leilehua High School, Army JROTC, Wahiawa, Hawaii
  • Marine Military Academy, U.S. Marine Corps JROTC, Harlingen, Texas
  • Montachusett Regional Vocational Technical School, U.S. Marine Corps JROTC, Fitchburg, Massachusetts
  • Valor 063VAL, Naval Sea Cadet Corps, Gardendale, Alabama
  • Youngstown ARS Composite Squadron, Civil Air Patrol, Vienna, Ohio  
Congratulations to the following advancing Open Division teams:
  • Chantilly Academy – A Governor’s STEM Academy, Chantilly, Virginia
  • Edward Roybal Learning Center, Los Angeles, California
  • Franklin High School, Los Angeles, California
  • North Hollywood High School, North Hollywood, California (Team 1)
  • North Hollywood High School, North Hollywood, California (Team 2)
  • Alamo Academies – ITSA, New Braunfels, Texas
  • Iolani School, Honolulu, Hawaii
  • Marshall Academy, Falls Church, Virginia (Team 1)
  • Marshall Academy, Falls Church, Virginia (Team 2)
  • MIT Lincoln Laboratory, Lexington, Massachusetts
  • Palos Verdes Peninsula High School, Rolling Hills Estates, California
  • Summit Technology Academy, Lees Summit, Missouri  
All advancing teams receive all-expenses-paid trips to the CyberPatriot National Finals Competition held in the Washington, DC area, in March 14-16, 2013. The National Finals Competition is powered by SAIC’s CyberNEXS, a high-level cyber training and exercise model that is used to help cybersecurity professionals learn to protect critical data assets.