HomeNewsArticle Display

Annual Wing Senior Leader Retreat ends in success

920th Rescue Wing Senior Leader Retreat

Col. Kurt Matthews, 920th Rescue Wing commander, addresses several dozen senior members of the unit during the wing's annual Senior Leader Retreat, in Tampa, Florida, Jan. 17, 2018. The four-day event provides wing leaders an opportunity to focus on strategic planning in a face-to-face setting. Discussion topics range in variety from wing policies to mission objectives. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Brandon Kalloo Sanes)

920th Rescue Wing Senior Leader Retreat 2018

Chief Master Sgt. Douglas C. Isaacks, 920th Rescue Wing command chief, discusses the importance of culture with senior enlisted membersl assigned to the wing during an afternoon session at the Senior Leader Retreat in Tampa, Florida, Jan. 17, 2018.

TAMPA, Fla. -- Several dozen Citizen Airmen Reserve commanders and top enlisted members of the 920th Rescue Wing gathered for the unit’s annual Senior Leader Retreat held along the Florida Gulf Coast Jan. 16-19.

The four-day event was made up several sessions geared toward strategic planning and coordination, with subtopics on policy changes, manpower and procedures.

“I wanted to bring together the leadership teams from our 18 squadrons, so that our commanders, chief enlisted managers and superintendents can synchronize objectives for 2018 and review our goals as a wing,” said Col. Kurt Matthews, 920th RQW commander. “I need to make sure all of our command teams understand what we need to do and why we need to do it.”

The 920th RQW, based in Cocoa Beach, Florida, has geographically separated units under its dominion as far away as Virginia, Arizona and Oregon. The event allowed managerial level personnel to meet their counterparts face-to-face, which can be difficult given the distances between each entity.

“The most important aspect of this event is communication,” said Chief Master Sgt. Stacie Moore, 920th Security Forces Squadron chief enlisted manager. “Getting all of these decision makers together to talk, will get them on the same page, which will lead to overall improvement of the wing.”

Based on their respective career fields, several keynote speakers led presentations for the audience of their peers.

“I spoke on the individual medical requirements,” said Col. Corey Anderson, 920th Aeromedical Staging Squadron commander. “It’s really important to align our squadron level goals with the wing commander’s vision. Our time spent collaborating is invaluable.”

During the retreat, Senior Master Sgt. Keith Castille, superintendent of operations with the Profession of Arms Center of Excellence, Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph, Texas, gave a presentation about maximizing human capital using interpersonal skills.

Although self-reflection was the primary narrative for attendees, they also took a moment to exchange leadership tips outside of their inner circle by meeting with Jay Feaster, vice president of community hockey development, and Ryan Niemeyer, director of group sales, from the Tampa Bay Lighting, a National Hockey League team. The TBL representatives hosted members of the 920th RQW at the Amalie Arena where they shared sentiments and stories on stewardship.

“It was truly an honor to spend time with the men and women of the 920th,” Niemeyer said. “The Lightning are very appreciative of their dedication and service to our country. We thank them for choosing to spend time with us during their leadership retreat. We were humbled and honored to be able to share with them a bit about how we shape our business and put together a team of exceptional people that work as one to accomplish our goals.”

The 920th RQW is a specialized rescue unit dedicated to the preservation of life in both theaters of combat and times of peace.