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Peterson first sergeants show ‘shirt love’

PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. -- As senior enlisted leaders and key advisors to commanders at all levels, first sergeants are in the middle of a myriad of issues impacting the health, morale and welfare of all Airmen. In many cases, these issues give people a negative perception of first sergeants, who are continuously involved in disciplinary and administrative actions.

But the involvement of first sergeants is not always when things go wrong; Team Peterson first sergeants are working on innovative ways to become more involved with Airmen in positive ways as well, said Master Sgt. Ryan Devine, 721st Mission Support Group first sergeant.

One of those events happened when the Peterson Air Force Base Diamond Council sponsored an Airman morale event at a bowling alley in Northern Colorado Springs Feb. 7. More than 50 Airmen showed up to share in free bowling, arcade games, laser tag, pizza buffet and drinks.

"Normally I'm not interested in certain events on this base because I believe it seems forced," said Airman 1st Class Philip Pettaway-Brewington. "However, when the shirts put together the Brunswick Zone event it made me feel like they actually wanted our morale to boost and I had a great time."

This event brought single Airmen together outside of their work centers, allowing them an opportunity to network with other Airmen and to see that the first sergeant is not always the commander's disciplinarian.

In addition to the Brunswick Zone event, the first sergeants made rounds to all Peterson AFB entry control points, delivering hot cocoa to personnel who were checking entry credentials Feb. 11. The council also sponsored a "dorm feast" that month where they provided pizza, wings, beverages and games to dorm residents.

"The pizza night at the dorms was a nice way to relax and just enjoy an evening eating and watching a movie," said Airman 1st Class Maxnisho Torres. "I really hope that can be done again."

The Diamond Council hopes to continue showing their appreciation of Airmen, from "Shirt Love" events to recurring Diamond Sharp awards, which are given to outstanding performers by the first sergeant team, said Devine. Ultimately the council intends to change perceptions about first sergeants and to serve as a reminder of what they are there for: Mission First, People Always.

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