June has been a busy month for AFA as we plan for our upcoming Air, Space & Cyber Conference and Technology Exposition, held this September 18-20th in National Harbor, MD. Our staff has been working tirelessly to ensure this year’s conference is the most memorable yet – packed with senior-level speakers and panels to inform you of the priorities and top issues of our Air Force leaders. With three months left, our Expo Hall is nearly filled with exhibitors from the top defense, aerospace and technology companies in the world. This will be an event you certainly won’t want to miss!
This year not only marks the 70th Birthday of our Air Force, it also marks the 50th anniversary of the Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force position. AFA played a pivotal role in advocating for the establishment of this critical position in 1967 in order to give a stronger voice to our enlisted force. Join us at Air, Space & Cyber to celebrate these great milestones.
On June 5th, we held our inaugural AFA Breakfast Series on Capitol Hill with the new Secretary of the Air Force Heather Wilson. This was Secretary Wilson’s first public speaking event, where she outlined her priorities regarding modernization and personnel issues in front of a sold-out audience of Airmen, industry leaders and media. July speakers include General Mike Holmes, Commander of Air Combat Command and Air Force Chief of Staff, General Dave Goldfein.
CyberPatriot and StellarXplorers, our two flagship STEM education programs, are off to a great start this month as well. CyberPatriot’s third season of AFA CyberCamps began on June 5th with over 105 host organizations in 160 locations. See which CyberCamps are in your area, here. StellarXplorers Director, Stephen Gourley, published a great article in Innovation & Technology Today on the importance of quality STEM education for our younger generations. Read it here.
I had the privilege of attending the AFA sponsored “Bleed Blue” event on Capitol Hill that brought the SECAF and CSAF together with members of Congress. I was also honored to represent AFA at the retirement ceremony for former Acting Secretary of the Air Force Lisa Disbrow. Ms. Disbrow is a visionary leader who took great care of our Air Force and our Airmen throughout her tenure and worked closely with AFA to promote a dominant Air Force. Lisa will be sorely missed, but has promised to remain involved with AFA in retirement.
As we look forward to July 4th next week, please take time to celebrate our freedom and reflect on the sacrifices made by so many to defend it. I encourage you to thank an Airman, Soldier, Marine or Sailor for their service and sacrifice to our great nation. Enjoy a safe holiday weekend!
Larry O. Spencer