News | July 3, 2019

HQ ARPC enlisted development call focuses on AF heritage

By Air Reserve Personnel Center Public Affairs

Headquarters Air Reserve Personnel Center held its first Enlisted Development Call here July 1.

The concept was created and vetted through senior leaders following the Defense Equal Opportunity Climate Survey (DEOCS) that was conducted last fall.

“One of the major areas of feedback that came out of the DEOCS was Airmen indicated that they wanted development opportunities,” said Chief Master Sgt. Brian Marr, Assignments Directorate superintendent and one of the EDC facilitators.

Directorates within HQ ARPC have similar programs geared towards enlisted development, but Chief Marr and others wanted to provide development opportunities for all members regardless of job title or duty status. Future EDCs will cover topics of interest to active duty, Guard and Reserve members and will include discussions on promotion eligibility and professional writing.

EDCs are not mandatory to attend, however, Marr wanted them to be a place people would want to come, to then be able to learn in an enjoyable environment.

“We wanted these to be a non-threatening environment that got people together who work in different sections and ordinarily don’t interact with each other,” he said.

Marr also added that it was important for this event to be interactive, which members in attendance seemed to appreciate.

“I liked how it wasn’t a, ‘here, let me talk to you’ kind of event,” said Staff Sgt. Devon Mooney, the Individual Ready Reserve muster program noncommissioned officer in charge. “This was more of a proactive training opportunity. While we’ve had development activities in the past, we haven’t had them at this level before.”

This initial EDC included inspiring heritage videos full of visually stunning and powerful stories of ordinary Airmen who did extraordinary things under incredibly challenging circumstances. Some of these Airmen ultimately sacrificed their lives for their country, such as Capt. Lance Sijan, a fighter pilot who ejected out of his burning jet over Vietnam in 1967 and was eventually captured and tortured as a POW.

“It was a sobering moment,"said Monney. "When it comes to your daily life, it’s easy to get lost. This video reminded us we should never forget where we came from as Airmen."

According to those in attendance including Mooney, the format and timely discussion were well received as everyone prepared for the Fourth of July holiday.

“It can’t just be leadership saying how important heritage is,” said Marr. “You don’t have to know the entire history, but understanding the sacrifices of those that came before you is important. When we put the uniform on, we represent that history and heritage.”