From the Top

  • Published
  • By Lt. Gen. Maryanne Miller
  • Air Force Reserve Command Commander

Q: What is your vision to shape the force for the future?

A: The Air Force Reserve, along with the rest of the Department of Defense, is entering a challenging and extraordinary time in the history of the United States. We are the smallest and leanest force we’ve ever been, operating day in and day out around the world. We have been challenged with readying a force across the full spectrum of warfighting capabilities. We are a remarkably talented force, and we continue to offer unprecedented opportunities to every Airman, regardless of gender, race, religion or sexual orientation. Sustained longevity of this talented force, serving our nation as “Airmen for Life,” is of the utmost importance and is the legacy of the Air Force Reserve.

Our newest Airmen are flexible, agile and more technologically advanced than ever. They are effective at communicating across new mediums. Now, more than ever, we need to leverage the skills of the current and prospective Airmen, especially in the space and cyberspace domains, and bridge the gap between their civilian and military careers. As Citizen Airmen, we know there is great value in serving our country while pursuing other opportunities. Let’s encourage this and cultivate a force with the endurance, innovative mindset and ingenuity that is critical for our future.  

Q: Where do we fit into the fight of tomorrow?

A: We share a common bond: our unique calling to serve our communities, our families and our country. Many Citizen Airmen chose to join after the 9/11 terrorist attacks, during a challenging time in our nation’s history. That courage speaks volumes about their character and commitment to upholding America’s values. Based on the challenges we face as a nation, Citizen Airmen play a critical role in taking the fight to the enemy, and we will continue to be an operational reserve. However, we must do so in a resource-constrained environment with funding lines that are unlikely to increase. I hope this motivates every one of us to make smart, innovative decisions on how we build a force of the future. The Reserve will strive to support missions that afford stability between civilian and military careers for our Citizen Airmen, civilians and contractors. We will invest in our people and their willingness to volunteer. Likewise, it is the responsibility of each and every one of us to be poised and postured to defend our nation. For those in command positions, empower every Reserve member in your units to be ready, qualified and prepared to serve. As we are all aware, in our line of work, success is not a catchphrase: It’s a requirement.

With 2017 right around the corner, it’s a great time to reflect on personal and professional goals. I appreciate your commitment to excellence. As Citizen Airmen, civilians and contractors, I know you are very familiar with balancing the demands of a military career, civilian employers and family. Please remember during this holiday season to take the time to reinvigorate yourselves and connect with your friends, your communities and, especially, your loved ones. For our many Airmen away from home during this holiday season, we appreciate your sacrifices and willingness to serve. It is an honor and a privilege to serve alongside you in our Air Force Reserve. Continue to always do your best and take care of each other, and enjoy your holiday season!