by Carla Pampe
Air Force Global Strike Command Public Affairs
11/4/2014 - BARKSDALE AIR FORCE BASE, La. -- The fourth Air Force Global Strike Command Technology and Innovation Symposium kicked off Nov. 4, here.
The symposium is part of the culmination of Global Strike Challenge, a
competitive event where the top security forces, maintainers, and
missile and bomber crews are recognized as the "best of the best" in
their specialties. Competition events took place August through October
back at the Airmen's home bases.
Teams from AFGSC's six wings, as well as competitors from the Air Force
Reserve and Air Combat Command, arrived in the Bossier City area Monday
for the symposium and official score posting and awards ceremony at
Hoban Hall at Barksdale AFB.
Lt. Gen. Stephen Wilson, commander of Air Force Global Strike Command,
opened the symposium, stressing the importance of the strategic
"We are a big piece of our nation's strategic deterrence -- that
foundation, that bedrock from which our nation gets its security," he
said. "We've assembled some of the best and brightest from around the
country.... Ask [them] challenging questions, think about what they say
and internalize it. Think about how we can make ourselves better."
Retired Gen. Jack Chain, former commander-in-chief of Strategic Air
Command, was the opening guest speaker for the day, and highlighted the
importance of leading from the front.
Chain shared valuable lessons he learned over the course of his 35-year Air Force career with the symposium attendees.
"One is to always set yourself apart from the crowd," he said. "Know
what your boss needs. Know what you know and what you don't know, and
how to fill that void. Always have personal integrity, and learn to work
with a diversified team.
"Most importantly, do what is right -- and you always know what's right," Chain said.
Former Eighth Air Force commander, retired Lt. Gen. Robert Elder, talked
to the group about the Air Force's legacy of providing alternatives to
force-on-force conflict for the Commander-In-Chief.
"We are a multi-dimensional Air Force," he said, "and we are known for innovation."
Elder highlighted the Air Force's contributions to joint military
actions from its inception in 1947, including the Korean War, the Cold
War, Vietnam, Allied Force, Enduring Freedom, Iraqi Freedom, Odyssey
Dawn and today.
"We protect the nation and its global interests by conducting global,
regional and tactical operations in concert with national and partner
instruments of power," he said.
The last speaker for the symposium session was Maj. Gen. Garrett
Harencak, Assistant Chief of Staff for Strategic Deterrence and Nuclear
Integration, Headquarters U.S. Air Force.
Harencak's focus was on engagement and advocacy, telling the group, "the
continuing relevance of what you do needs to be talked about, by all of
"For generations, the American people understood the value of what you
do in the deterrence mission. They don't now. That is my fault -- it's
all of our faults -- because we don't talk about it," he said.
The general spoke about the nuclear triad of bombers, intercontinental
ballistic missiles, and sea-launched ballistic missiles, and the
importance of each, saying that if you cut even one leg of the triad,
the deterrence mission is weakened.
"The nuclear triad allows us to give the President of the United States
options," he said. "We have to make people understand the value of what
we do. You are doing incredibly cool things, so let's talk about it."
Global Strike Challenge concludes Wednesday with a traditional score posting and trophy presentations at Hoban Hall on base.