Skywrighter Staff Participants in the LEADership Wright-Patt program wrapped up their five-month course during a formal graduation ceremony Sept. 15 at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force.
The graduates made a personal investment to develop into prospective Wright-Patt leaders during this year’s course. The ceremony highlighted the route participants took to get to this final destination.
Gregory Leingang, vice director, 88th Air Base Wing, welcomed the participants and their guests and offered words of encouragement for their participation and completion of the program.
Brian Butler, with the 88th Force Support Squadron, assisted in presenting the capstone winners their certificates and LWP pins.
There were 20 military and civilian participants who were chosen by their organizational leadership according to program director Sherita Smith.
The graduates are Maj. Ruben Adorno, Kaley Bartosik, Shannon Calton, Daniel Dantas, Tech. Sgt. Jonathan Daw, Brandon Ely, Christopher Fassio, Tech. Sgt. Justin Gardner, Taylor Gentry, Capt. Denita Guthery, Mary Hillwig, Brandon Hutchinson, Harold Lunsford, Melissa Radcliffe, Master Sgt. Lauren Spenceley, Maj. Sammy Trujillo, Jennifer Voehringer, Kirby Williams, Capt. Tatiana Wynder and Shelly Young.
LWP took the participants through tailored organizational mission briefs and tours that highlighted the organizations day-to-day operations that support their missions and the overall U.S. Air Force.
They received specialized training in leadership principles and collaborated on their assigned, “real-world” concerns, which were taken from the AFMC We Need program, according to LaTonya Johnson, management analyst for LWP.
Individualized work groups, panel discussions, direct interaction with WPAFB leadership, and a variety of programmed activities focused on the global perspective of the base. The teams made their Capstone presentations and were judged by a panel of subject matter experts who determined the winner.
Participants also took part in a Senior Leadership Panel with guests Col. Christopher Meeker, 88 ABW and installation commander; Dr. Candice Hatcher-Solis, team lead, Neurobiology of Cognitive Research, 711th Human Performance Wing; and Randall Parker, director, Air Force Installation and Mission Support Center Det 6. The group asked questions to the panel regarding their leadership style, personal leadership principles, and route to achieving their current level of success.
“Knowing your team and their preferences, as well as knowing yourself, are key to being an inclusive leader. Inclusivity builds trust, which in turn motivates effective communication and unique outcomes,” said Maj. Ruben Adorno from Air Force Research Laboratory.
“As a participant, I felt like a theme of trust was the one I always came back to during our panel discussions and meeting with various leaders around the base. … Without cultivating trust, it will be impossible to getting to your other goals of inclusivity, communication, and innovation,” said Taylor Gentry from the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force.
The 2023 iteration of LEADership Wright-Patt will be announced in late winter, for a spring start date, said Johnson.