by Airman 1st Class Ryan Sparks
319th Air Base Wing Public Affairs
5/14/2015 - GRAND FORKS AIR FORCE BASE, N.D. -- The
319th Force Support Squadron and the Airman and Family Readiness Center
hosted a financial education event entitled Heroes at Home May 12,
2015, at the Northern Lights Club here.
Heroes at Home is a good will educational tour sponsored by the United
Services Automobile Association (USAA). The event focuses on a variety
of financial topics meant to educate and prepare Airmen to be
"We're trying to help improve military readiness through financial
readiness," said Ellie Kay, consumer finance consultant and best-selling
author. "That's our main mission."
Kay and her team that consists of Gerri Detweiller, Ingrid Burns and
Bethany Grace visited Grand Forks Air Force Base as part of a six base
tour. Kay is a consumer finance consultant and successful author,
Detweiller is a credit expert, Burns is with USAA and focuses on
retirement and savings, and Grace is the emcee for the events.
Kay said that USAA wanted Grand Forks AFB to be one of only six bases
out of the 55 that applied to receive the tour because Grand Forks AFB
typically doesn't get the bigger events.
The Airmen in attendance seemed to enjoy the event.
"I thought it was very informative," said Airman 1st Class Joseph
Fabiano, 319th Civil Engineer Squadron engineering apprentice. "It will
definitely help me with my financial decisions."
"I really enjoyed it," said Senior Airman Kimberly Kornett, 319th CES engineering apprentice. "It was very enlightening."
As a wife and mother of military members, Kay has been around the
military for her entire life. She wants service members to realize the
importance of financial readiness.
"One of the main reasons that it's so important to be financially
responsible is because they have a real world mission. They have to
focus on that real world mission. If they are distracted by financial
problems, then that distraction could lead to accidents," said Kay.
"When there are accidents, there can be a loss of life."
Kay has advice for all service members to follow.
"The biggest mistake that military members and their families can make
when it comes to finances is to do nothing at all," said Kay.
The Airman and Family Readiness Center provides several services
regarding personal finances said Cheryl Anderson, Airman and Family
Readiness Center director.
Anderson said the A&FRC offers classes pertaining to a variety of
financial topics. She said they currently have a class addressing
finances during deployment. The classes can be requested by any Airmen.
"Our most popular services are the personal appointments, "said
Anderson. " The member can get a free [credit] score and work on their
Kay said she feels that the A&FRC is a valuable resource.
"I call it my $300 tip to come into the Airman and Family Readiness
Center," said Kay. She said the free financial consultants provided by
the A&FRC would cost at least $300 outside of the Air Force.
Airmen are taking accountability for their finances said Kay.
"They are becoming more proactive. They are taking charge of their own
finances and they realize that coming in to the A&FRC and talking
with an accredited financial counselor is a smart thing to do," said
Kay. "It's not a last resort."
For more information contact the A&FRC at 701-747-3241.