USAFEC welcomes previous leaders for Senior Statesman Conference

  • Published
  • U.S. Air Force Expeditionary Center Public Affairs

The U.S. Air Force Expeditionary Center hosted past commanders and command chiefs during its biennial Senior Statesman Conference to discuss important topics regarding the enterprise Sept. 15.

The purpose of the conference was to inform and get a fresh perspective from retired USAFEC senior leaders as the organization prepares for changes in fiscal year 24.

“The Senior Statesman Conference is extremely important to the command team here,” said Chief Master Sgt. Courtney Freeman, USAFEC command chief. “We are looking at these issues every day, and we need fresh eyes with different perspectives. Today we want to dig a little deeper and ask why certain things worked and didn’t work in the past and really leverage all the years of experience and knowledge sitting in this room. Your council is greatly appreciated.”

Throughout the day discussions centered around how the organization has evolved over the years, and briefings highlighted the accomplishments of FY23. The team also shared the fiscal year 24 strategy in hopes the dialogue could generate historical perspective.

“All of the Senior Statesman here, either directly or indirectly, have had an impact on my career,” said Maj. Gen. John Klein, USAFEC commander. “It’s an honor to show them all the great things we’ve been able to accomplish because of the groundwork they’ve put in. I look forward to taking their inputs and applying them to our new strategy to make a more dynamic and agile force.”

Overall, the daylong event offered the former commanders and command chiefs the opportunity to provide insight and wisdom from first-hand experience.

“It’s a great opportunity to get updated on where (the Expeditionary Center) is going and what you’re trying to do,” said Retired Lt. Gen. William Bender, former USAFEC commander from October 2010 to July 2013. “I sit on boards, think tanks, different trade associations; and can pull all of that together to help the Air Force, from the outside, be successful.”