by Airman 1st Class Christian Clausen
432nd Wing/432nd Air Expeditionary Wing Public Affairs
6/16/2015 - CREECH AIR FORCE BASE, Nevada -- During
one's life there's often a moment when something is said or done that
will stick with them for the remainder of their life.
These actions are the things that mold us as individuals and grow our
beliefs and morals. It can be unimaginable just how much simple words
have the ability to change or shape one's life. For Tech. Sgt. Kevin,
15th Reconnaissance Squadron intelligence operations supervisor and
intelligence flight NCO in charge, it started as an impressionable young
man trying to make it through basic military training.
"I remember my instructor saying 'if you're not 15 minutes early, you're late,'" Kevin said, chuckling as he reminisced.
Little did he know that advice would strongly mold his work ethic and
stick with him 12 years later as he continues to improve the
intelligence career field and mission within his squadron and Creech Air
Force Base, Nevada.
Stemmed from the guidance he received in basic training, his discipline
of time-management has resulted in improved processes and tools created
for mission efficiency at every duty station he's been assigned to.
His latest creation is a program called the Squadron Intelligence
Reconnaissance Interface, codename SIRI. It's an application being used
by remotely piloted aircraft crew members to execute the mission more
efficiently while being more situationally aware.
"The program will alert crew members of threats in the area, as well as,
decrease the amount of time it takes to complete tasks so they may
focus on the mission," Kevin said. "That time saved can help them pass
information quicker and mean the difference between life and death
SIRI helps aircrews by acting as a sort of Google. They can search
answers to conversions, locations, abbreviations, brevity words, rules
of engagements, munitions specifications, call signs, and many more.
This is particularly helpful when working with coalition partners to
quickly convert measurements or identify call signs with aircraft.
"Rather than having to take my eyes off the screens to use multiple
resources to find an answer, SIRI can relay that information instantly,"
said Capt. David, 15th Reconnaissance Squadron pilot. "That allows me
to focus on the mission and maximize my time."
This innovative program has been constantly improved over the last year
since its inception and now can perform 58 commands, much more than its
original designed to complete only one.
"I wanted to write a program to calculate Air Tasking Order dates, which
can be a very tedious [process]," Kevin said. "Once it was approved and
in use, members of my squadron gave me tons of feedback asking for more
functions and I implemented everything I could."
He attributes the success of the program to the creativity of his
squadron members and his knowledge of how to write computer script.
"Tech. Sergeant Kevin's creation of SIRI is the story of how bottom-up
innovation occurs in the Air Force," said Lt. Col. Ryan Keeney, 15th RS
commander. "Airmen see a problem, design a novel solution, and it is
rapidly adopted to help combat operations."
His innovative skills aren't new to him, rather, they are the culmination of nearly two decades of learning and application.
"I remember when I was a kid learning how to program video games on an
old DOS machine (Disk Operating System), most of my Airmen probably
don't know what that is," Kevin said as he laughed. "After that I got
interested in doing web design and software programming. That's where my
This passion coupled with his need to challenge himself, has also
spawned other improvements to the intelligence career field community.
As a senior Airman, he saw a benefit for having a secure Wikipedia type
website for the intelligence community to inspire collaboration and
awareness with other units.
"I saw that the Central Intelligence Agency and Defense Intelligence
Agency wanted to create something like what I was having ideas about and
I started to coordinate with them," Kevin said. "I worked closely with
them to help implement it in 2005 and now the entire Department of
Defense uses it."
Later he was selected to be a technical school instructor, grooming the
future generation of intelligence Airman. He spent two years teaching
the enlisted operations intelligence course and another two teaching the
intelligence officer course.
While there he created a website for the intelligence officer's course.
Little did he know, his future officer in charge would go through the
course using the same resources he had developed.
"The website is a one-stop-shop for many resources we use for
information," said Capt. Carlos, 15th RS intelligence flight commander.
"Even now I still use it because it's so convenient and saves me time."
For such major and long-term improvements to the intelligence community
and Air Force missions, it may seem Kevin had a destiny to be in the
career assigned to him. Actually, his job is far from what he thought he
would be doing.
"I signed up to do computer programming and that's not what I do at
all," he said laughing. "I remember my first day of technical school the
instructor giving us bomb specifications. Not knowing what he was
talking about I raised my hand asking when we we're going to start
learning about computers and I received a confused look from him."
Despite this, Kevin never became discouraged. He continued to excel at
his job and still use his computer skills to benefit the Air Force.
Tech. Sgt. Kevin has made significant improvements to the intelligence
community, leaving his 'footprints' engrained into the Air Force for
years to come.
"Kevin is one of those great problem solvers who don't wait for someone
else to give him the solution," Keeney said. "He took the initiative to
combine his intelligence savvy with his off-base education to create a
program that would have taken years for our acquisition system to
complete. Ultimately his innovations have helped the Air Force save