News happening around Little Rock Air Force Base
By Staff Sgt. Dana J. Cable, 19th Airlift Wing Public Affairs
/ Published August 07, 2019
U.S. Air Force Maj. Michael Lasher assumes command of the 314th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron from Col. Argie Moore, 314th Maintenance Group commander, during a ceremony at Little Rock Air Force Base, Arkansas, July 30, 2019. The assumption of command marked the first step in transitioning the 314th AMXS back to active-duty maintainers. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Jayden Ford)
The 314th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron marked the first step in reconstituting an active-duty maintainer force during an assumption of command ceremony at Little Rock Air Force Base, Arkansas, July 30, 2019. U.S. Air Force Maj. Michael Lasher assumed command of the squadron during the ceremony.
“Although we are happy to have active-duty maintainers on the flight line, I would be remiss if I did not publically thank the contractors, Value Services Engineers, led by Mr. Steve Wilson, for the amazing work they have done and will continue to do until their contract officially ends next year,” Moore said.
Moore congratulated Lasher on his selection of what she considers the most challenging, yet rewarding, job in the Air Force – squadron command.
“With your leadership, and your ‘mission first, people always’ philosophy, I cannot be more confident in your ability to lead our group through a complex and challenging reorganization,” Moore said. “It is in the squadron that the missions of the Air Force succeed or fail. It is where lethality and readiness are generated, aligned and sustained, and where the command team will have the most profound impact on our most precious resource – our Airmen.”
According to Lasher, the Air Force’s efforts to revitalize the squadrons are readily apparent at LRAFB.
“We intend to grow our squadron, to make them capable of not only executing, but enhancing the mission of training the world’s greatest C-130 airlifters,” Lasher said. “I am greatly encouraged by Team Little Rock’s remarkable reception of the squadron members here at LRAFB. I have complete confidence that your support of the 314th AMXS as we grow will enable us to achieve unprecedented mission accomplishment in the coming months and years.”
This is Lasher’s first time being part of a C-130 organization, but says that every airframe or mission he has ever worked has depended on a C-130 at some point. Whether parts, people or even aircraft – C-130’s have delivered every step of the way.
“It is an honor to be here as we mark this milestone in the reconstitution of our uniformed Airmen back in to the aircraft maintenance squadron,” Lasher said. “I am incredibly proud and honored to be a part of Herk Nation, but also to be at the foundation of Herk Nation where it all starts -- enabling missions around the world.”
The reconstitution of the unit follows a brief, planned stand down of active duty-maintainers in the squadron. To address a shortfall of maintainers, Air Force leaders made a critical decision to convert and redistribute maintainers from five non-deployable squadrons.
During that time, Air Force leaders directed that contractor maintenance personnel be used to fill the manning gap in those five squadrons. The 314th AMXS was one of those squadrons selected to transition to contractor maintenance personnel for three years from 2017-2020.