NORMAN, Okla. -- Security Forces leadership from more than 100 units across the Air National Guard (ANG) met in one place to discuss past, current and upcoming topics that impact the career field as a whole.
This year, the ANG Director of Security Forces hosted the bi-annual ANG Security Forces Conference at the National Center for Employee Development in Norman, Oklahoma. The conference started with registration Sept. 10, 2018 and ended with the retiring of the colors, Sept. 13, 2018.
“The ANG Security Forces Conference provides an opportunity for our community to cross talk and receive real time updates on current Air Force and National Guard Bureau initiatives to enhance our domestic and war fighting capabilities.” said Senior Master Sgt. T.J. Hall, Air National Guard security forces career field manager. “In our resource constrained environment, building relationships and sharing best practices between mission-like squadron leadership teams and our staff is a critical side effect of the conference.”
The conference and its speakers covered topics like training, compliance, equipment, readiness, domestic operations, risk management and other security force-specific topics such as access control and manpower.
“I am proud to have attended the 2018 Security Forces conference with my colleagues from the field," said Lt. Col. Brian Griefer, Deputy Director of ANG Security Forces. “Having experienced these events from both a field and headquarters perspective, I recognize the value they provide in both information sharing and relationship building.”
The conference also featured an award ceremony Sept. 12, which allowed the Director of ANG Security Forces and security forces managers to recognize individuals and units for their outstanding accomplishments during the previous year. The awards and their recipients are as follows:
ANG Outstanding Air Reserve Component (ARC) Security Forces Airman of the Year: Senior Airman Brandan J. Abel, 157th Security Forces Squadron, New Hampshire
ANG Outstanding ARC Security Forces Noncommissioned Officer of the Year: Master Sgt. Michael W. Hensley, 129th Security Forces Squadron, Moffett Field, California
ANG Outstanding ARC Security Forces Senior Noncommissioned Officer of the Year: Master Sgt. Walter O. Dow, 101st Security Forces Squadron, Bangor International Airport, Maine
ANG Outstanding ARC Security Forces Support Staff Senior Noncommissioned Officer of the Year: Senior Master Sgt. Adam E. Jessee, 183rd Air Component Operations Squadron, Abraham Lincoln Capital Airport, Springfield, Illinois
ANG Higher Headquarters Staff Noncommissioned Officer of the Year: Master Sgt. Olen D. Smith, National Guard Bureau, A4S, Joint Base Andrews, Maryland
ANG Higher Headquarters Staff Civilian of the Year: Shane Braziel, National Guard Bureau, A4S, Joint Base Andrews, Maryland
ANG Staff Sgt. Todd “TJ” Lobraico Award for Excellence: Senior Master Sgt. Dale H. Snowdon, 157th Security Forces Squadron, Pease Air National Guard Base, New Hampshire
Outstanding ARC Security Forces Unit: 162nd Security Forces Squadron, Tucson Arizona
“Conferences like this one, offer an unequaled opportunity to share valuable information, renew old relationships and foster new ones,” said Lt. Col. John Conaway, Director of ANG security forces. “It provides a collaborative environment where law enforcement professionals can share their successes and many challenges, always striving for improvement. Events like the awards banquet give us the opportunity to honor those who have truly excelled in their craft and in many cases done so at the expense of themselves and their family. I am always humbled to be in their presence.”
The 137th Special Operations Wing (137th SOW), Will Rogers Air National Guard Base, Oklahoma, and the 164th Airlift Wing, Memphis Air National Guard Base, Tennessee, provided manpower and equipment to this year’s conference, including the 137th SOW Honor Guard.