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302nd AW kicks off new civic leader outreach program

Staff Sgt. Meagan Hasty, left, a 39th Aerial Port Squadron technician, explains the ins-and-outs of rigging aerial delivery cargo before it is loaded onto a C-130 Hercules to community leaders during the Partners in Leadership visit at Peterson Air Force Base, Colo., March 23, 2017. The Partners in Leadership program is designed to grow and reinforce existing relations between leaders within the local community and the 302nd Airlift Wing and to further educate community leaders on the many Air Force Reserve missions performed in the Pikes Peak region. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Frank Casciotta)

Staff Sgt. Meagan Hasty, left, a 39th Aerial Port Squadron technician, explains the ins-and-outs of rigging aerial delivery cargo before it is loaded onto a C-130 Hercules to community leaders during the Partners in Leadership visit at Peterson Air Force Base, Colo., March 23, 2017. The Partners in Leadership program is designed to grow and reinforce existing relations between leaders within the local community and the 302nd Airlift Wing and to further educate community leaders on the many Air Force Reserve missions performed in the Pikes Peak region. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Frank Casciotta)

Senior Master Sgt. Gary Taiclet, the 34th Aeromedical Evacuation Squadron operations superintendent, explains how he customizes the interior of a C-130 Hercules to accommodate life-saving medical equipment for evacuations of patients to community leaders during the Partners in Leadership visit at Peterson Air Force Base, Colo., March 23, 2017. The Partners in Leadership program is designed to grow and reinforce existing relations between leaders within the local community and the 302nd Airlift Wing and to further educate community leaders on the many Air Force Reserve missions performed in the Pikes Peak region. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Frank Casciotta)

Senior Master Sgt. Gary Taiclet, the 34th Aeromedical Evacuation Squadron operations superintendent, explains how he customizes the interior of a C-130 Hercules to accommodate life-saving medical equipment for evacuations of patients to community leaders during the Partners in Leadership visit at Peterson Air Force Base, Colo., March 23, 2017. The Partners in Leadership program is designed to grow and reinforce existing relations between leaders within the local community and the 302nd Airlift Wing and to further educate community leaders on the many Air Force Reserve missions performed in the Pikes Peak region. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Frank Casciotta)

Col. James DeVere, the 302nd Airlift Wing commander, briefs local community leaders on the wing’s mission during the Partners in Leadership visit at Peterson Air Force Base, Colo., March 23, 2017. The program is designed to grow and reinforce existing relations between leaders within the local community and the 302nd AW and to further educate community leaders on the many Air Force Reserve missions performed in the Pikes Peak region. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Frank Casciotta)

Col. James DeVere, the 302nd Airlift Wing commander, briefs local community leaders on the wing’s mission during the Partners in Leadership visit at Peterson Air Force Base, Colo., March 23, 2017. The program is designed to grow and reinforce existing relations between leaders within the local community and the 302nd AW and to further educate community leaders on the many Air Force Reserve missions performed in the Pikes Peak region. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Frank Casciotta)

PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. -- The 302nd Airlift Wing hosted its first event for the wing’s new Air Force Reserve Partners in Leadership program bringing in community leaders from in and around Colorado Springs, Colo., March 23, 2017.

The program is designed to grow and reinforce existing relations between leaders within the local community and the 302nd AW and to further educate community leaders on the many Air Force Reserve missions performed in the Pikes Peak region. The program will include four events throughout 2017 showcasing both the Air Force Reserve mission and Air Force Reserve and active-duty partnerships in Colorado Springs.

Attendees of the first event which showcased the Air Force Reserve missions at Peterson Air Force Base, included representatives from the local Chamber of Commerce Military Affairs Committee, the healthcare industry, businesses, local schools, non-profit organizations and local city governments.

“As an Air Force Reserve Wing the 302nd is just one part of the larger military community throughout Colorado Springs,” said Col. James DeVere, the 302nd AW commander. “Our goal here is to further educate leaders in the Pike’s Peak region specifically on the Air Force Reserve and how the Reserve mission is a vital partner to several active duty missions here and in global operations.”

Highlights of the first Air Force Reserve Partners in Leadership event included 302nd AW and 21st Space Wing mission briefings along with hands-on experiences and informational visits with members of the 302nd Security Forces Squadron, the 34th Aeromedical Evacuation Squadron, the 39th Aerial Port Squadron, and the 731st Airlift Squadron. The group also saw up-close, the U.S. Forest Service Modular Airborne Fire Fighting System tanks and had a chance to talk with the reservists who support that special C-130 mission. Program participants were also given the opportunity to experience first-hand, the 21st Security Forces Squadron training facility to see how both active duty and Air Force Reserve security forces Airmen continue both weapons and threat response training.

“I think it’s amazing seeing the reality,” said Lisa James, the Pikes Peak Community College Foundation executive director, while reflecting on the day’s events. “The reservists really are the heart of our national security.”

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