45th Space Wing proven Effective as World's Premier Gateway to Space, ready for 2016

  • Published
  • By Brig. Gen. Wayne R. Monteith
  • 45th Space Wing commander
After 17 launches, overcoming a launch anomaly and a historic landing of a first stage booster at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, we have proven 100 percent mission success in 2015. As if that wasn't awesome enough, our performance was validated with an overall score of Effective on the Unit Effectiveness Inspection.

The Air Force Space Command Inspector General turned this Wing upside down, and we showed them how phenomenal our team performs on a daily basis. I expect all Sharks to carry this excellence throughout 2016 and beyond. Remember, this was about mission effectiveness, not inspections; we must be ready to do our mission every day. Because control of the battlefield does begin here; delivering space capabilities to our nation's warfighters and cargo to the International Space Station doesn't happen without you.

A team of 87 inspectors from Peterson Air Force Base, Colorado, headed by Col. Keith Balts, Air Force Space Command Inspector General, completed a UEI on the wing's ability to manage readiness and compliance in December. They graded four major mission areas, generating an overall score of Effective.

The 45th SW was deemed Highly Effective in the categories of Executing the Mission and Managing Resources. In the other two categories, Leading People and Improving the Unit, the wing was rated Effective.

This came as no surprise to us, by being honest in your unit assessments, we knew our strong points and where we needed improvements. Of the sub-categories we garnered eight Highly Effective and nine Effective ratings. We had 25 identified strengths, 28 professional teams and 40 professional performers; this clearly demonstrates the tremendous work our Sharks are doing.

While it was phenomenal, we only had 11 significant findings identified. I encourage you to continue to evaluate your own processes even though we will not see another inspection for two years. Continue to demonstrate integrity by revealing every problem area you can find. Collecting data, creating after action reports, improving communication, identifying "red" or "yellow" areas and utilizing the online Management Internal Control Toolset system are beneficial tools to enhance unit-level evaluations throughout the year.

While launching rockets is our primary mission, we made huge strides in many of our other mission areas in 2015. Together we broke ground for Blue Origin, demolished the old Air Force Technical Applications Center building, renovated dorms, opened our fitness center 24/7 and recertified our medical facilities and services. These achievements helped us win a considerable number of Air Force Space Command awards, and I expect us to pick up quite a few Air Force level awards next.

Sharks, I want to empower you to continue to make our wing better. Your innovation and dedication make a difference. We demonstrate our constant state of preparation with every launch.

Moving forward through 2016, I have five priorities for us to focus on. First, we need to find efficiencies everywhere they hide. Second, we need to ensure we're taking care of our people with the proper workload, mentorship, tools and training. Third, we must continue to improve our infrastructure. Fourth, continue being good stewards of taxpayer dollars. Lastly, always remember we are one team called the 45th SW, and we are the world's premier gateway to space!

We have approximately 30 launches on the horizon, starting with GPS IIF-12, the last of a dozen IIF satellites, marking the impressive end of an era at the Cape. Despite a launch pace not seen in decades, new programs will be making their debut. Dining Outs, new fitness classes, unrestricted parking spaces and as close to a tobacco free workplace as possible are just a few items we'll see in 2016; all designed to improve quality of life for all Sharks.

You are all outstanding in my book, or in my shorthand...you ROCK! No other team in the World performs our mission with the frequency and professionalism as you do. 

(Editor's note: Below is the list of Professional Teams and Professional Performers who were formally recognized by the Air Force Space Command Inspector General during their Unit Effectiveness Inspection of the 45th Space Wing in December 2015.)

UEI Superior Performers

45th Wing Staff
Capt. Kathryn Watson, Base Legal Office
Tech. Sgt. Bryant Warren, Equal Opportunity
Jennifer Macklin, Information Protection
Tech. Sgt. Jessica Sonnier, Wing Safety
Roberta Clark, SE
Tommy Ricketson, SE
Shannon M. Bloom, 45th Comptroller Squadron

45th Operations Group
1st Lt. Mercedes Edwards, 45th Operations Support Squadron
David Craft, 45th Weather Squadron
Tech. Sgt. Marcus Koskosky, 45th OSS
Thomas Taylor, 45th WS

45th Launch Group
Tech. Sgt. Sonny Putman, 45th LCG
1st Lt. Benjamin Bingham, 45th Launch Support Squadron
David Meismer, 45th LCSS
Capt. Emanual Nunez, 45th LCSS
Tech. Sgt. Gary Smith, 45th LCSS
Capt. John Richmond, 5th Space Launch Squadron
Tech. Sgt. Angel Santiago-Zapata, 5th SLS
Staff Sgt. Chadwick Remy, 5th SLS

45th Mission Support Group
Tech. Sgt. Michael Asuncion, Jr., 45th Civil Engineer Squadron
Mark Dixon, 45th CES
Tech. Sgt. Jeremy McLendon, 45th CES
Ryan Morrell, 45th CES
Capt. Justin Schultz, 45th CES
Staff. Sgt Jerod Trainor, 45th CES
Master Sgt. Jason Charlemagne, 45th Force Support Squadron
Senior Airman Elizabeth Lucas, 45th FSS
Senior Master Sgt. Clifton Matthews, 45th FSS
Staff. Sgt. Coralys Ross, 45th FSS
Staff. Sgt. Timothy Russell, 45th FSS
Johnie Stevens, 45th FSS
Cleofas Trejo, 45th FSS
Jessica Fairchild, 45th Logistics Readiness Squadron
Keith Thompson, 45th LRS
Staff. Sgt Alexandria Brye, 45th Security Forces Squadron
Bradly Dowell, 45th SFS
Ronnie Walker, 45th SFS
Leigherin Minton, 45th SFS

45th Medical Group
2nd Lt. Timothy Hisey, 45th Medical Support Squadron
Airman Samantha Westerman, 45th Medical Operations Squadron

UEI Professional Teams

45th Wing Staff
Flight Analysis Section, SE
Occupational Safety, SE
Risk Analysis Section, SE
Weapons Safety Section, SE
Financial Analysis Flight, 45th CPTS

45th Operations Group
Post Operation Launch Assessment Team, 45th OG
Air Traffic Control and Landing System, 45th OSS
Intelligence Section, 45th OSS
Patrick and Cape Canaveral Airfield Management Team, 45th OSS
Official Mail Center, 45th Space Communications Squadron
Plans & Programs Section, 45th SCS
Special Missions Flight, 45th SCS

45th Launch Group
Air Force Responsible Engineer Training, Certification/Evaluation Modernization Team, 45th LCG
Falcon 9 Certification Team, 45th LCSS

45th Mission Support Group
Heavy Repair Element, 45th CES
Housing Element, 45th CES
Infrastructure Element, 45th CES
LGCP Plans & Programs Flight, 45th Contracting Squadron
Outdoor Recreation, 45th FSS
Professional Development Team, 45th FSS
Fleet Management & Analysis Team, 45th LRS
Individual Protective Equipment Team, 45th LRS
Vehicle Management Materiel Control Team, 45th LRS
Installation Entry Controllers, Day Shift, Element 1, 8 Dec 15, 45th SFS

45th Medical Group
Public Health Deployment Team, 45th AMDS
Mental Health Flight, 45th MDOS
Medical Readiness Flight, MDSS
Resources Management Flight, 45th MDSS