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Paths to leadership: Space Force NCOs commission through SLECP

Men pose for a photo

2nd Lt. Kevin Justice, 533rd Training Squadron assistant flight commander, left, commissions as a U.S. Space Force officer after completing Air Force Officer Training School at Maxwell Air Force Base, Alabama, Sept. 2, 2021. He was one of the first two Guardians to commission through the Senior Leadership Enlisted Commissioning Program. (Courtesy photo)


The first two U.S. Space Force officers selected for the Senior Leadership Enlisted Commissioning Program have graduated from Air Force Officer Training School at Maxwell Air Force Base, Alabama, and commissioned on Sept. 2, 2021.


U.S. Space Force 2nd Lt. Kevin Justice, 533rd Training Squadron assistant flight commander, and USSF 2nd Lt. Lacey Kap, 533rd TRS executive officer, were selected by senior Space Force leadership for SLCEP based on recommendations from their leadership teams that spotlit their demonstrated excellence.


“I’m extremely excited for Justice’s future as an officer, although, the Warhawks will surely miss one of our high-impact enlisted leaders,” said USSF Lt. Col. Kara Sartori, 4th Space Control Squadron commander, when Justice was selected. “He has done outstanding work for us, training our instructors and tacticians here locally as well as helping out the weapons school to spread the word about our mission. The USSF will certainly benefit by commissioning Justice as an officer.”


Prior to his selection for OTS, Justice was assigned to Space Delta 3 — Space Electromagnetic Warfare, Peterson Space Force Base, Colorado, and Kap served at Space Delta 4 – Missile Warning, Buckley SFB. Both will serve as part of Space Delta 1 — Training 533rd TRS at Vandenberg SFB, California, where they will complete technical training for their new careers.


Commissioning in the USSF has opened up new options for Justice, such as U.S. Air Force Weapons School. His intent is to focus on Space Force operations, specifically related to space control, and weapons and tactics. During his enlistment, Justice earned a bachelor’s degree in geoscience, which gives him a strong foundation in scientific and technical fields that are fundamental to the work he’s done and hopes to continue doing.


“Geoscience is really just mapping,” said Justice. “When you realize you’re working with [light detection and ranging] and even just photographic satellites, and understanding what that’s going to do and how that’s going to translate onto a map, there’s a surprising amount of crossover. Almost everything uses a geographic information system of some type, so having that knowledge in addition to other things is like having a knowledge of how to use Excel or Powerpoint. It’s always going to be there, and it gives you a little bit of an edge.”


In 2019, he was an integral team member for U.S. Africa Command as part of the squadron that received the USSF Space Crew of the Year Award.


“Being able to be out there with the Special Operations Task Force and integrate space capabilities as much as possible was one of the most gratifying jobs I’ve done so far in space,” said Justice. “Whatever I can do to get closer to that and being able to put myself in those positions, [I want to do.]”

Peterson SFB Schriever SFBCheyenne Mountain SFSThule AB New Boston SFS Kaena Point SFS Maui