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AETC leaders visit Altus AFB

ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. – U.S. Air Force Maj. Matt Valero, 97th Operations Group, briefs U.S. Air Force Gen. Robin Rand, commander of Air Education and Training Command, about how the in-house rubber removal process has saved the base money Aug. 7, 2014. The in-house rubber removal process is accomplished by the 97th Civil Engineer Squadron instead of paying an outside contractor to do the same job which allows the base to use the money saved for other mission essential operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Dillon Davis/Released)

ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. – U.S. Air Force Maj. Matt Valero, 97th Operations Group, briefs U.S. Air Force Gen. Robin Rand, commander of Air Education and Training Command, about how the in-house rubber removal process has saved the base money Aug. 7, 2014. The in-house rubber removal process is accomplished by the 97th Civil Engineer Squadron instead of paying an outside contractor to do the same job which allows the base to use the money saved for other mission essential operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Dillon Davis/Released)

ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. – U.S. Air Force Gen. Robin Rand, commander of Air Education and Training Command, and U.S. Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Gerardo Tapia, Air Education and Training Command command chief, present a gift to the 2014 AETC Outstanding Airman of the Year, Staff Sgt. Jessica Paulson, 97th Civil Engineering Squadron. Paulson was deployed as a Senior Airman when she earned the award.  (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Dillon Davis/Released)

ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. – U.S. Air Force Gen. Robin Rand, commander of Air Education and Training Command, and U.S. Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Gerardo Tapia, Air Education and Training Command command chief, present a gift to the 2014 AETC Outstanding Airman of the Year, Staff Sgt. Jessica Paulson, 97th Civil Engineering Squadron. Paulson was deployed as a Senior Airman when she earned the award. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Dillon Davis/Released)

ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. – U.S. Air Force Gen. Robin Rand, commander of Air Education and Training Command, speaks to Airmen of the 97th Civil Engineer Squadron during a demonstration of the in-house rubber removal process on the flightline Aug. 7, 2014. Rand spoke to the Airmen about current Air Force topics and encouraged them to keep up the good work. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Dillon Davis/Released)

ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. – U.S. Air Force Gen. Robin Rand, commander of Air Education and Training Command, speaks to Airmen of the 97th Civil Engineer Squadron during a demonstration of the in-house rubber removal process on the flightline Aug. 7, 2014. Rand spoke to the Airmen about current Air Force topics and encouraged them to keep up the good work. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Dillon Davis/Released)

ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. – U.S. Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Gerardo Tapia, command chief of Air Education and Training Command, asks questions about heritage to U.S. Air Force Tech. Sgt. Christy Baumgardner, 97th Force Support Squadron Airman Leadership School instructor, inside the ALS Heritage Room Aug. 8, 2014. The school hosts students from Altus AFB and Vance Air Force Base, which is located about three hours northeast of Altus. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Nathanael Callon/Released)

ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. – U.S. Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Gerardo Tapia, command chief of Air Education and Training Command, asks questions about heritage to U.S. Air Force Tech. Sgt. Christy Baumgardner, 97th Force Support Squadron Airman Leadership School instructor, inside the ALS Heritage Room Aug. 8, 2014. The school hosts students from Altus AFB and Vance Air Force Base, which is located about three hours northeast of Altus. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Nathanael Callon/Released)

ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. – U.S. Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Gerardo Tapia, command chief of Air Education and Training Command, speaks with Airmen of the dorm council during his visit to the 97th Air Mobility Wing Aug. 8, 2014. Tapia discussed quality of life issues with the Airmen and offered advice to get more Airmen involved in the council. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Nathanael Callon/Released)

ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. – U.S. Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Gerardo Tapia, command chief of Air Education and Training Command, speaks with Airmen of the dorm council during his visit to the 97th Air Mobility Wing Aug. 8, 2014. Tapia discussed quality of life issues with the Airmen and offered advice to get more Airmen involved in the council. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Nathanael Callon/Released)

ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. – U.S. Air Force Tech. Sgt. Christie Kidder, 97th Operations Support Squadron aircrew flight equipment technician, explains cost-saving initiatives to reduce waste to U.S. Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Gerardo Tapia, command chief of Air Education and Training Command, during Tapia’s visit to the 97th Air Mobility Wing Aug. 8, 2014. The squadron developed an initiative to donate expiring non-perishable food to a nearby food bank. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Nathanael Callon/Released)

ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. – U.S. Air Force Tech. Sgt. Christie Kidder, 97th Operations Support Squadron aircrew flight equipment technician, explains cost-saving initiatives to reduce waste to U.S. Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Gerardo Tapia, command chief of Air Education and Training Command, during Tapia’s visit to the 97th Air Mobility Wing Aug. 8, 2014. The squadron developed an initiative to donate expiring non-perishable food to a nearby food bank. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Nathanael Callon/Released)

ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. – U.S. Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Gerardo Tapia, command chief of Air Education and Training Command, simulates in-flight refueling from a KC-135 Stratotanker during a visit to the Boom Operator Weapons System Training Simulator Aug. 7, 2014. Tapia was able to get a hands-on look at the 97th Air Mobility Wing’s training mission and its contribution to meeting future warfighter needs. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Dillon Davis/Released)

ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. – U.S. Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Gerardo Tapia, command chief of Air Education and Training Command, simulates in-flight refueling from a KC-135 Stratotanker during a visit to the Boom Operator Weapons System Training Simulator Aug. 7, 2014. Tapia was able to get a hands-on look at the 97th Air Mobility Wing’s training mission and its contribution to meeting future warfighter needs. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Dillon Davis/Released)

ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. – U.S. Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Gerardo Tapia, command chief of Air Education and Training Command, speaks with Airmen from the 97th Air Mobility Wing during breakfast Aug. 8, 2014. Tapia met with Airmen and discussed current Air Force issues including force-shaping, the new enlisted performance system and developmental special duties. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Nathanael Callon/Released)

ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. – U.S. Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Gerardo Tapia, command chief of Air Education and Training Command, speaks with Airmen from the 97th Air Mobility Wing during breakfast Aug. 8, 2014. Tapia met with Airmen and discussed current Air Force issues including force-shaping, the new enlisted performance system and developmental special duties. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Nathanael Callon/Released)

ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. – U.S. Air Force Gen. Robin Rand, commander of Air Education and Training Command, speaks to NCOs about current Air Force topics and his priorities during one of his commander’s calls with Airmen of the 97th Air Mobility Wing Aug. 7, 2014. Rand held commander’s calls with NCOs, CGOs, commanders, chiefs and first sergeants. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Dillon Davis/Released)

ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. – U.S. Air Force Gen. Robin Rand, commander of Air Education and Training Command, speaks to NCOs about current Air Force topics and his priorities during one of his commander’s calls with Airmen of the 97th Air Mobility Wing Aug. 7, 2014. Rand held commander’s calls with NCOs, CGOs, commanders, chiefs and first sergeants. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Dillon Davis/Released)

ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. – Leaders of the 97th Air Mobility Wing salute the aircraft transporting U.S. Air Force Gen. Robin Rand, commander of Air Education and Training Command, as he arrives on the flightline Aug. 6, 2014. During the visit, Rand, Mrs. Rand and U.S. Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Gerardo Tapia, AETC command chief, were able to see Altus AFB and meet some of the top performing Airmen. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Dillon Davis/Released)
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ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. – Leaders of the 97th Air Mobility Wing salute the aircraft transporting U.S. Air Force Gen. Robin Rand, commander of Air Education and Training Command, as he arrives on the flightline Aug. 6, 2014. During the visit, Rand, Mrs. Rand and U.S. Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Gerardo Tapia, AETC command chief, were able to see Altus AFB and meet some of the top performing Airmen. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Dillon Davis/Released)

ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. – U.S. Air Force Gen. Robin Rand, commander of Air Education and Training Command, is greeted by 97th Air Mobility Wing leaders on the flightline Aug. 6, 2014. Rand visited Altus AFB to meet the Airmen of the Mighty 97th as well as attend the KC-46 Ground Breaking Ceremony. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Dillon Davis/Released)
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ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. – U.S. Air Force Gen. Robin Rand, commander of Air Education and Training Command, is greeted by 97th Air Mobility Wing leaders on the flightline Aug. 6, 2014. Rand visited Altus AFB to meet the Airmen of the Mighty 97th as well as attend the KC-46 Ground Breaking Ceremony. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Dillon Davis/Released)

ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. – U.S. Air Force Gen. Robin Rand, commander of Air Education and Training Command, his wife Kim, and U.S. Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Gerardo Tapia, AETC command chief, watch the 97th Air Mobility mission video during a briefing inside the Wing Conference Room Aug. 6, 2014. The new mission video introduced Air Force heritage to align with AETC priorities and better inform viewers of the new mission recently assigned to Altus AFB. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Dillon Davis/Released)
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ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. – U.S. Air Force Gen. Robin Rand, commander of Air Education and Training Command, his wife Kim, and U.S. Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Gerardo Tapia, AETC command chief, watch the 97th Air Mobility mission video during a briefing inside the Wing Conference Room Aug. 6, 2014. The new mission video introduced Air Force heritage to align with AETC priorities and better inform viewers of the new mission recently assigned to Altus AFB. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Dillon Davis/Released)

ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. – Jim Kelly, 97th Air Maintenance Directorate director, explains recent maintenance process improvements his team has developed to U.S. Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Gerardo Tapia, command chief of Air Education and Training Command, during Tapia’s visit to the 97th Air Mobility Wing Aug. 8, 2014. This was Tapia’s first visit to Altus AFB since becoming the AETC command chief. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Nathanael Callon/Released)
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ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. – Jim Kelly, 97th Air Maintenance Directorate director, explains recent maintenance process improvements his team has developed to U.S. Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Gerardo Tapia, command chief of Air Education and Training Command, during Tapia’s visit to the 97th Air Mobility Wing Aug. 8, 2014. This was Tapia’s first visit to Altus AFB since becoming the AETC command chief. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Nathanael Callon/Released)

ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. – U.S. Air Force Gen. Robin Rand, commander of Air Education and Training Command, speaks to David Dresser, 97th Maintenance Directorate, about Altus’ Voluntary Protection Program during a visit to the maintenance hangar Aug. 6, 2014. Dresser explained in detail what the program has done to improve the safety and efficiency of the base’s maintainers. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Dillon Davis/Released)
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ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. – U.S. Air Force Gen. Robin Rand, commander of Air Education and Training Command, speaks to David Dresser, 97th Maintenance Directorate, about Altus’ Voluntary Protection Program during a visit to the maintenance hangar Aug. 6, 2014. Dresser explained in detail what the program has done to improve the safety and efficiency of the base’s maintainers. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Dillon Davis/Released)

ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. – U.S. Air Force Master Sgt. Jason Garcia, 97th Air Mobility Wing Chapel assistant, and U.S. Air Force Maj. Bryan Clouse, 97th Air Mobility Wing chaplain, greet Mrs. Kim Rand, spouse of Gen. Robin Rand, commander of Air Education and Training Command, and Mrs. Alisa Spangenthal, spouse of the 97th AMW commander, at the Airmen Resiliency Center during Rand’s tour Aug. 7, 2014. Clouse and Garcia informed Rand of some of the great things that the ARC is doing for Airmen including the Airmen’s Pantry and Airmen’s Attic. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class J. Zuriel Lee/Released)
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ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. – U.S. Air Force Master Sgt. Jason Garcia, 97th Air Mobility Wing Chapel assistant, and U.S. Air Force Maj. Bryan Clouse, 97th Air Mobility Wing chaplain, greet Mrs. Kim Rand, spouse of Gen. Robin Rand, commander of Air Education and Training Command, and Mrs. Alisa Spangenthal, spouse of the 97th AMW commander, at the Airmen Resiliency Center during Rand’s tour Aug. 7, 2014. Clouse and Garcia informed Rand of some of the great things that the ARC is doing for Airmen including the Airmen’s Pantry and Airmen’s Attic. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class J. Zuriel Lee/Released)

ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. – U.S. Air Force Tech. Sgt. Christopher Zicopula, 97th Comptroller Squadron budget analyst, explains the squadron’s unique customer service capabilities to U.S. Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Gerardo Tapia, command chief of Air Education and Training Command, during Tapia’s visit to the 97th Air Mobility Wing Aug. 8, 2014. The comptroller squadron accommodates incoming Airmen through personal appointments, where a technician assists the member in filing travel vouchers and other paperwork in a one-on-one setting. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Nathanael Callon/Released)
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ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. – U.S. Air Force Tech. Sgt. Christopher Zicopula, 97th Comptroller Squadron budget analyst, explains the squadron’s unique customer service capabilities to U.S. Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Gerardo Tapia, command chief of Air Education and Training Command, during Tapia’s visit to the 97th Air Mobility Wing Aug. 8, 2014. The comptroller squadron accommodates incoming Airmen through personal appointments, where a technician assists the member in filing travel vouchers and other paperwork in a one-on-one setting. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Nathanael Callon/Released)

ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. – U.S. Air Force Gen. Robin Rand, commander of Air Education and Training Command, wore the 97th Air Mobility Wing patch on his flight suit while visiting the 58th Airlift Squadron C-17 Globemaster III simulators Aug. 7, 2014. In the simulator, Rand was able to simulate in-flight refueling and assault landings to get a feel for what the 97th Air Mobility Wing training mission consists of. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Dillon Davis/Released)
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ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. – U.S. Air Force Gen. Robin Rand, commander of Air Education and Training Command, wore the 97th Air Mobility Wing patch on his flight suit while visiting the 58th Airlift Squadron C-17 Globemaster III simulators Aug. 7, 2014. In the simulator, Rand was able to simulate in-flight refueling and assault landings to get a feel for what the 97th Air Mobility Wing training mission consists of. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Dillon Davis/Released)

ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. – Members of the 97th Air Mobility Wing Honor Guard present the colors during a KC-46 groundbreaking ceremony Aug. 7, 2014. The ceremony represented the beginning of construction for a flight training center, a fuselage training facility, new aircraft hangars and renovations for a combined squadron operations and aircraft maintenance unit facility. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Dillon Davis/Released)
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ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. – Members of the 97th Air Mobility Wing Honor Guard present the colors during a KC-46 groundbreaking ceremony Aug. 7, 2014. The ceremony represented the beginning of construction for a flight training center, a fuselage training facility, new aircraft hangars and renovations for a combined squadron operations and aircraft maintenance unit facility. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Dillon Davis/Released)

ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. – U.S. Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Gerardo Tapia, command chief of Air Education and Training Command, simulates in-flight refueling from a KC-135 Stratotanker during a visit to the Boom Operator Weapons System Training Simulator Aug. 7, 2014. Tapia was able to get a hands-on look at the 97th Air Mobility Wing’s training mission and its contribution to meeting future warfighter needs. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Dillon Davis/Released)
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ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. – U.S. Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Gerardo Tapia, command chief of Air Education and Training Command, simulates in-flight refueling from a KC-135 Stratotanker during a visit to the Boom Operator Weapons System Training Simulator Aug. 7, 2014. Tapia was able to get a hands-on look at the 97th Air Mobility Wing’s training mission and its contribution to meeting future warfighter needs. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Dillon Davis/Released)

ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. -- Leaders from Air Education and Training Command visited Altus Air Force Base Aug. 6 - 8, 2014.

AETC Commander Gen. Robin Rand and his wife Kim, along with U.S. Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Gerardo Tapia, AETC command chief, met with Airmen and families of the 97th Air Mobility Wing and also attended a KC-46A Pegasus ground breaking ceremony.

The general and chief experienced firsthand the daily operational and support programs that made Altus AFB the Commander-in-Chief's Installation Excellence Award winner for 2014, while Kim Rand met with agencies on base to better understand how resources like the Airman and Family Readiness Center and the key spouses program are used to take care of families stationed here.

During the visit, the general learned how Altus AFB contributes to AETC's mission of recruiting, training and educating Airmen to deliver airpower for America as well as forging innovative Airmen to power the world's greatest Air Force.

"We should be very proud and humbled by the role that the Air Force plays in defense of America," said Rand. "I want to thank you for everything you all do. You're not taken for granted."

In addition to meeting with Airmen in their workplace, Rand and Tapia hosted a series of commander's calls with Airmen, and shared their perspective of current and future Air Force topics.

"Do the very best at whatever it is that you're doing," said Tapia in response to a question regarding force shaping. "Eventually, the cream comes to the top. If you're a good Airman and you know your job and you go the extra mile then you will do great."

During the three commander's calls, Rand and Tapia were able to speak in depth about AETC priorities and how the Airmen fit into the bigger picture.

"Think about how many Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Marines wouldn't have come home from combat zones if it weren't for the efforts of the U.S. Air Force," said Rand. "We need to find the opportunity to discuss and breed the Air Force warrior ethos and what we do and why we do it."

The visitors also attended the KC-46 Ground Breaking Ceremony, signaling the beginning of many preparations needed to host the first ever formal training unit dedicated to training pilots and boom operators on the Air Force's newest tanker.

Altus was selected as the preferred location for the KC-46A Pegasus tanker aircraft's formal training unit in April 2014.
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