AMC Civic Leaders, command team visit Herk Nation

  • Published
  • 19th Airlift Wing Public Affairs

Fifteen Air Mobility Command Civic Leaders visited Little Rock Air Force Base, Sept. 18-20, 2023, to learn more about the mission and how Team Little Rock supports the largest C-130 fleet in the world.

Hand-selected for their demonstrated track record of support for Mobility Airmen, families, and missions in communities near AMC installations, these Civic Leaders advocate for and provide support to help advance the command conduct Rapid Global Mobility.

The group, along with Gen. Mike Minihan, AMC commander, and Chief Master Sgt. Jamie Newman, AMC command chief, conducted the multi-day trip to survey base operations and gain insight on the tactical airlift and training missions that AMC and Air Education and Training Command Airmen execute daily.

The Civic Leaders were welcomed with a brief showcasing Team Little Rock's mission and the installation's history. They delved into the base's long-standing history of C-130 training and learned about Herk Nations's role in defending U.S. interests at home and abroad by projecting TacAir Anywhere.

“It’s always an honor to be back at the home of Herk Nation and to meet the Airmen who are tackling the mission each and every day,” Minihan said. “These Airmen are exemplary professionals who win by setting the standard – from the flightline to the front lines, every member of Team Little Rock projects the Joint Force maneuver that is integral to winning today and in the future.”

The next morning, the group shared breakfast with Airmen across the installation, giving the command team the opportunity to be immersed in Herk Nation culture and gain insight on how the Airmen remain at the leading edge of operational excellence.

Following their time connecting with members of Herk Nation, the AMC command team and Civic Leaders shifted their attention to hands-on, mission-related activities at various locations around the base.

The Explosive Ordnance Disposal team gave the group a tour of their compound, showcasing multiple aspects of the job and their mission, and demonstrated their robotic capabilities used during unexploded explosive ordnance recognition while also providing an overview of their general equipment and small weapons systems.

Several different base programs had the opportunity to demonstrate their efforts to the group, including the DoD STARBASE educational program.

The STARBASE faculty provided a demonstration of various science, technology, engineering, and math classes, ranging from basic circuitry to coding and robotics. The STARBASE program allows students from local elementary schools to explore the worlds of STEM while exposing them to positive civilian and military role models.

Along with the STARBASE presentation, HERKWERX, the 19th Airlift Wing's innovation hub, displayed its efforts to Accelerate Change today.

At the innovation lab, the group learned about the HERKWERX’s Aircraft Structural Maintenance “War Wagon”, a deployable asset that allows maintenance technicians to meet mission needs separate from a dedicated workshop. The initial war wagon was born out of a necessity to perform aircraft structural maintenance away from in-garrison infrastructure.

Additionally, the Civic Leaders visited the 19th Maintenance Group and received a virtual reality maintenance training demonstration which displayed how students can now learn in a “hands-on” format without the need of an actual aircraft. This program provides an improved educational experience and ensures maximum resources are available for aircrew members who depend on the same aircraft for training.

During the visit, the group also had the opportunity to participate in a hands-on demonstration of the Warrior Airmen Readiness Center. The WAR Center is a 5-day course that introduces Airmen to a wide variety of deployment-oriented skills, ranging from base defense to Tactical Combat Casualty Care. The course allows Airmen to gain comfort in stressful situations and prepares them for peer-to-peer conflict.

The day culminated with the WAR Center’s capstone event, which consisted of a simulated medical evacuation where Minihan was hoisted into a helicopter.

Throughout the tour, Team Little Rock was able to showcase how we develop, manage, and sustain Airmen with strong tactical and technical competency, a warfighting spirit, a high-level of discipline, innovative mindsets and a driven bias toward action.

“This visit not only provided an opportunity to strengthen our partnerships with community leaders, but it allowed them to be immersed in our proud Herk Nation culture and see how our Airmen are focused, trained, and ready to win across the conflict continuum,” said Col. Denny Davies 19th Airlift Wing and installation commander. “Our Airmen do not admire problems; they are empowered to solve them and keep moving forward, providing agile worldwide tactical airlift, sustainment, and asymmetric advantage at the time and place of our senior leaders’ choosing.”

With that knowledge and hands-on experience, they now better understand the Mobility Air Forces’ mission, and are able to go back to their communities and inform, influence and promote change for the better.