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Guidance, priorities from the new AFSPC Commander

PATRICK AFB, Fla. -- Last week, I had the distinct honor and privilege to attend the Air Force Space Command Commander's Conference and Change of Command Ceremony where I witnessed General John E. Hyten become the 16th commander of AFSPC, replacing General William L. Shelton.

In addition to the change-of-command ceremony, we were able to spend time with General Hyten, where he very clearly spelled out both his guidance and priorities for the more than 42,000 professionals who currently work under his command.

While making it clear that the "vision" of Space Command is not going to change, he listed these as his Top 3 priorities.

1. Win the fight we are in today. (His goal for us at "Team Patrick Cape" is pretty clear: 100% mission success. His command will deliver 100% of the data to the warfighter on the ground 100% of the time. No pressure, right?)

2. Prepare now for tomorrow's fight. (For us, this just means we continue to ignite innovation, and deliberately develop our people so that we continue 100% mission success now and in the years to come).

3. Take care of our Airmen and their families. (Here, that means we will take his advice and maintain a "Wingman Culture," and direct leaders at all levels to better connect with their people. BTW, we do that pretty well already.)

He also gave us two VERY clear red lines he wanted us to be aware of.

1. He doesn't like "old news," meaning "bad news" never gets better with time. So let us know - sooner rather than later please - when something is broken so we can get to work fixing it.

2. He will NOT (nor will I) tolerate any disrespect of any member of Air Force Space Command, regardless of rank or duty position, gender or race, age or religion. Every single person here at the 45th Space Wing not only deserves our respect; they earn it day after day. So give it to them.

Team, these are not always easy times to be involved in a business as difficult - and important -- as the one we find ourselves in. General Hyten himself said "assured access to space is THE most important thing we do here in Space Command."

You play a huge role in our success, and I just want you to know that I never - ever - miss an opportunity to let our senior leaders know the kind of quality professionals we have in every corner, every wing, and every team here on the Space Coast.

Together, we can do this. We are strong. As a team.

Stay focused Sharks!