Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Face of Defense: Airman Combines Creativity, Service, Entrepreneurship

By Army Sgt. 1st Class Jose Ibarra, DoD News, Defense Media Activity

LOS ANGELES -- When people think of service members, they typically think of combat arms jobs such as infantrymen or fighter pilots -- jobs you see in Hollywood movies.
Airman prepares cameras for production shoot.

The truth is that the military has a dynamic range of jobs requiring a dynamic range of skills. Thinkers, problem solvers, creators and artists -- yes, even artists -- all play their part in today’s military. Most military jobs provide the necessary experience to succeed in the civilian sector, whether it’s in logistics, law, the environment or the creative arts, including graphic design and film.

One airman got more than he initially expected when he raised his right hand and swore to support and defend the Constitution of the United States. “I never dreamed of being able to create for the military,” said Air Force Reserve Staff Sgt. Corban Lundborg as he described the first time he was introduced to the creative side of the military. “While on active duty, I rarely left the warehouse and didn’t know photojournalism existed.”

His first job in the Air Force was as a logistician, and one day a supervisor asked if anyone wanted to be the base photographer. At the time, Lundborg said, he was desperate to get out of the warehouse where he worked, so he took the job and never looked back.

Seeking Adventure

As a high school senior, Lundborg said, he knew he wanted more than four more years of sitting in a classroom. He wanted adventure. During his senior year, he was into boxing and spent his after-school time at a local boxing gym. A lot of veterans hung out there, he said, and they told him about the Air Force. At that moment in his life, Lundborg said, he knew he had to make a change for the better.

“I had absolutely no idea what to expect, other than I needed to get out my environment,” he said. So, at age 18, Lundborg enlisted in the Air Force on an “open general” contract -- meaning without a specific job -- and left, as he said, “ASAP.”

Lundborg was off to Korea for a year, followed by three years in Italy. He planned to do four years of active service and then reassess his life. Though he was not satisfied with his initial supply job, he said, overall he enjoyed the Air Force.

“I joined to travel and learn a little about the world. I got what I signed up for and wouldn’t change a thing,” Lundborg said. He had gone from hardly leaving the Midwest to being an international explorer.

The experience was “nothing short of life-changing,” he said.

“I don’t think I could even put into words how my travels impacted my perspective on culture, opportunity and the people around me,” Lundborg added.

Being Creative in the Military

“It’s really a dream come true to work an Air Force job that so closely aligns with my life’s passion,” Lundborg said. After his four-year active-duty contract was over, he decided to go to the Air Force Reserve, where he has established himself as a capable storyteller.

“I’ve been tasked for projects [from] co-directing creative production sets to flying into the eye of a hurricane on a day’s notice,” said Lundborg, who now serves in the Air Force Reserve as a photojournalist with the 4th Combat Camera Squadron at Joint Base Charleston, South Carolina.

Looking back, he said, the Air Force helped to make him who he is today. “The Air Force taught me to set goals and showed me my ability to push perceived limits,” Lundborg explained. “I’ve learned success is nothing more than constructive daily habits manifested over time.”

As an Air Force reservist, Lundborg can enjoy the best of both worlds: his military career and his desire to be a successful artist and entrepreneur. His military photography inspires his paintings and vice-versa, he said, and his artistic eye helps his ability to tell the Air Force story.

Out of the Uniform into Entrepreneurship

While stationed in South Korea, Lundborg started studying the art of tattooing and that reignited his love for the arts. From there, he continued to create, starting his first business at age 20 while stationed in Italy. He was selling paintings out of his dorm room, where he started his “Cold Studio” brand, growing it day by day. He is now 26, and that same business is now booming in Los Angeles. “It is so fun to look back on the journey,” he said.

Lundborg’s global journey continues. He travels to work on art projects around the world, and he has even gone “rogue,” spending a year living and working out of a mobile studio on a cross-country art tour. His entrepreneurial journey has taught him to take risks, to trust and also to celebrate the small victories, he said. “The entrepreneur life is a windy road -- one day you’re heading this way, then the next you are taking the business in a new direction,” Lundborg said.

There is a saying that “If you love what you do, you will never work one day in your life.” Lundborg is the living proof. “It has been so rewarding that just this week my wife and I launched a second business that focuses on media production,” he said.

The Future

“The Air Force has no doubt shaped me as a man, an artist and as entrepreneur,” he said, adding that he plans to continue to grow his fine-art company. Lundborg said he hopes his media production company will similarly take root into something inspiring. “I’ve always focused on providing exceptional service and quality to the customer, and because of that, there has never been a shortage in income or work,” he said.

You can follow Corban Lundborg on social media and occasionally watch him go live on Facebook from his studio in North Hollywood as he works on paintings that range from modern portraits to works that spread social awareness of world issues such as pollution and veterans issues.

Transcom Nominee: U.S., Partners Face Increasingly Complex Security Environment

By Terri Moon Cronk, DoD News, Defense Media Activity

WASHINGTON -- The United States and its global partners face an increasingly complex security environment that requires a joint force that’s relevant to the times, the nominee to be the next commander of U.S. Transportation Command told the Senate Armed Services Committee today.

Army Lt. Gen. Stephen R. Lyons told senators that such a joint force must be one that can compete, deter, and if necessary, respond and win decisively.

“Transcom’s mission is to project and sustain military power globally, at our time and place of choosing, providing an immediate force tonight and a decisive force when needed,” he said.

“If confirmed, I recognize that I indeed have big shoes to fill,” Lyons said. “The Transcom team is absolutely exceptional, and I have been the beneficiary of that unparalleled professionalism throughout my entire career.”

Projecting Power Globally

The general told the senators that if he’s confirmed, he looks forward to working with the committee to ensure that the Defense Department’s ability to project power globally remains a comparative advantage, capable of providing multiple options to national leaders and multiple dilemmas to potential adversaries.

Lyons serves as the Joint Staff’s director for logistics, responsible for integrating logistics planning and execution to support joint operations to drive joint force readiness, maximize the joint force commander's freedom of action and advise the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff on logistics matters.

He previously served as Transcom’s deputy commander at Scott Air Force Base in Illinois. If confirmed, he would be the first Transcom commander from outside the Air Force.

Ohio Army Guardsmen Hone Combat Casualty Evacuation Skills

By Army Sgt. Andrew Kuhn, 196th Mobile Public Affairs Detachment

CAMP GRAYLING JOINT MANEUVER TRAINING CENTER, Mich. -- Members of the Ohio Army National Guard practiced their ability to evacuate combat casualties during an exercise here, June 19.

Army Spc. Matthew Sell, an interior electrician with the 1194th Engineer Company, role-played a casualty with a gunshot wound through the chest and a dwindling pulse. Army Spc. Diantre Pressley, a plumber with the 1194th, provided first aid to Sell, while other soldiers provided security and suppressive fire, and radioed a medical evacuation report.

"At first I was nervous," Pressley said. "Then it just kicked in, and I started to go through the steps of what I learned and what I needed to do."

With time working against them, Pressley and the team peeled off Sell's vest to get a better look at the simulated wound. The team continued to communicate their situation to Army Spc. Adam Reeder for the evacuation report, while Pressley began to execute necessary lifesaving measures.

‘There was an Exit Wound’

"I slapped a chest seal on him, and there was an exit wound. So, I put one on his back too," Pressley said. "It's my job to make sure he's good until he gets [additional] medical care."

The soldiers then hoisted Sell above their shoulders into the bed of their tactical vehicle.

"We just changed our technique," Pressley said. "There are certain carries you can do without the vest, so we had to switch to that to get there fast enough and efficiently."

As the truck tires stirred up dust down the rugged trail to the landing zone, Pressley continued to reevaluate Sell's condition and administer care.

As the truck halted, the tailgate dropped, and the team poured out with Sell in tow to await the arrival of a CH-47 Chinook helicopter.

"I just made sure everybody was in the right places," Reeder said. "First establishing our security lines, and then there were some situations where things had changed so we had to quickly reevaluate, reassess and get everybody on the right page."

Casualty Evacuation

After several anxious minutes, the helicopter's beating blades could be heard. Army Spc. Ryan Reneker painted the sky from the middle of the field with his fluorescent yellow safety belt, hoping to be seen by the helicopter’s pilots as they emerged over the tree line.

With a roaring pass, the helicopter looped around and began its descent. The force of the rotor wash, like a tornado, blasted the air with debris, and blowing sand stung exposed skin.

"I really wasn't sure what to expect," Reeder said. "I think some of the new guys didn't expect the sand to come in as quickly and as hard as it did."

Once the dust settled, Pressley and Army Spc. Anthony Romeo collected Sell and rushed toward the waiting helicopter with support from the rest of the team. The silhouette of the helicopter's crew chief greeted them as they crossed the field with Sell to the waiting helicopter.

"My squad relies on me to take care of them if anything would happen," Pressley said. "My training allowed me to properly evaluate him, take care of him and take him to safety."

En Route to Field Hospital

For nearly 15 minutes they soared several hundred feet over the training facilities here. As the Chinook landed, the adrenaline-fueled soldiers flooded from the rear, and -- for one last time -- they held a secure position until it departed.

"When I landed my blood was rushing," Pressley said. "It was good to go fast and really apply our training to something fast-paced like that."

Pleased with their run, the team eagerly mounted their vehicle and returned to celebrate their success and share the news with the other two teams back at the start of the training lane.

"After running through it, I was highly pleased," Reeder said. "The guys did an outstanding job, and I think everybody really enjoyed the whole real-life scenario aspect of it."

"I really appreciated the willingness and motivation of the younger soldiers," said Army Capt. Bryan Andrews, commander of the 1194th.