A look back at 2018 at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base: Events, more

Dr. Will Roper, assistant secretary of the Air Force for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics, spoke during the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center’s Life Cycle Industry Days at the University of Dayton River Campus in Dayton Sept. 12-14. (U.S. Air Force photo/Al Bright)

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Dr. Will Roper, assistant secretary of the Air Force for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics, spoke during the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center’s Life Cycle Industry Days at the University of Dayton River Campus in Dayton Sept. 12-14. (U.S. Air Force photo/Al Bright)

Compiled by Amy Rollins, Skywrighter Staff

Throughout 2018, there were many significant milestones achieved by numerous organizations across Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. Here are some of the milestones, events, awards and other things that contributed to the overall success of missions:


The Air Force Institute of Technology's Graduate School of Engineering and Management awarded 241 master's and doctorate degrees March 22. The graduating class included 208 Air Force officers, three Air Force NCOs, 10 Army officers, three Marine Corps officers and 13 civilians. The school also had three international students from Argentina and the Republic of Korea. The guest speaker for the graduation ceremony was Secretary of the Air Force Dr. Heather Wilson.

More than 600 people registered to attend the 13th annual Dayton Defense Wright Dialogue with Industry at the Dayton Convention Center July 17-19, making this year's event between the Air Force Research Laboratory and defense contractors the largest to date. The two-and-a-half-day event, titled "AFRL Science and Technology Supporting the National Defense Strategy," included comprehensive presentations, panel discussions and one-on-one sessions with senior Air Force officials.

The Air Force Installation Contracting Agency welcomed more than 100 category management professionals from around the world to share best practices, learn about new enterprise sourcing tools and hear from senior leaders during its third annual Enterprise Sourcing Summit, held at AFIT July 17-18.

The Air Force Security Assistance Center hosted its first Non-Standard Supply Workshop for foreign military partners at the Montgomery County Business Solutions Center in Dayton. The three-day event brought together allies from more than 23 nations, as well as Air Force and Department of Defense acquisition and logistics experts, to exchange ideas, receive valuable training and discuss AFSAC's Worldwide Warehouse Redistribution Services and Parts and Repair Ordering System programs.

To continue its engagement with industry, the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center held its third annual Life Cycle Industry Days event at the University of Dayton River Campus in Dayton Sept. 12-14. The sold-out event drew hundreds of attendees from small and large business as well as senior leaders from various Air Force, Department of Defense and other federal agencies, to network, learn about and discuss future Air Force requirements and acquisition issues. The event was packed with featured speakers, including Dr. Will Roper, assistant secretary of the Air Force for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics. Roper addressed developments in the Air Force acquisition world that include new prototyping and rapid fielding authorities granted by Section 804 of the National Defense Authorization Act.

This year marked the 22nd annual running of the U.S. Air Force Marathon. The warm, humid weather didn't stop more than 15,000 runners, walkers and spectators from all 50 states and more than 10 foreign countries from taking part at Wright-Patterson AFB Sept. 15. Lt. Gen. Robert McMurry, interim commander, AFMC, and commander, Air Force Life Cycle Management Center, gave the opening remarks and reminded everyone that the event is not just Wright-Patterson's but includes the entire Air Force around the world.

The Cleveland Cavaliers put on a show for the Airmen at Wright-Patterson AFB, bringing their annual Wine and Gold Scrimmage to the base Sept. 30. Set up in one of the hangars at the 445th Airlift Wing, the game offered more than a thousand Airmen and their family members the opportunity to watch the Cavs up close, take photos and get autographs. Prior to the game, the Cavaliers attended a luncheon with Airmen followed by a tour at AFRL's 711 HPW where they visited the centrifuge and learned about the latest in human performance research. The final stop of the tour ended at the game site with a walk through the inside of a C-17.

Col. Thomas Sherman, 88th Air Base Wing and installation commander, Wright-Patterson AFB, announced the findings Dec. 19 from a command-directed investigation regarding an installation-wide active shooter exercise conducted Aug. 2. The active shooter exercise was planned and executed at the Kittyhawk Chapel with role players simulating casualties. At roughly the same time period, the 88th Medical Group held an internal, separate exercise at Wright-Patterson Medical Center to test its mass casualty response procedures. During the course of the two exercises, confusion on the part of several units caused subsequent reactions by multiple internal organizations and led to a mutual aid response from surrounding communities and state and national entities, according to the report. The independent investigation made broad, wide-ranging recommendations for consideration that covered many areas.


Ground was broken March 19 for the new installation Gate 26A. The $10.5 million project will replace both the existing commercial delivery entrance gate at Gate 16A off Ohio 444 as well as the old Gate 26A located near the 445th Airlift Wing. Construction is expected to be finished by the end of 2019. The new gate is expected to improve base security as well as handle increasing traffic of an expanding workforce.

A ribbon-cutting ceremony was held Aug. 2 in AFRL's 711 HPW to celebrate the full operational capability, or F.O.C., of the only human-rated centrifuge in the Department of Defense. The equipment allows students to experience up to 9 Gs, or nine times the normal force of gravity, to teach the effects of G-forces on human physiology and to measure the student's ability to counteract the effects in effort to prevent G-induced loss of consciousness.

The Gaming Research Integration for Learning Laboratory, or GRILL, under the AFRL, 711 HPW, Airman Systems Directorate's Warfighter Readiness Research Division, will get a new home early in 2019, thanks to a 30,000-square-foot renovation of unoccupied building space at the Dayton Regional STEM School on Woodman Drive in Kettering. GRILL is an educational outreach program that inspires student interest in STEM through modeling and simulation software, helping to equip the region's next generation of critical defense workforce. A "Brick Breaking" ceremony was held at the school Oct. 19.

Wright-Patterson AFB Exchange leaders and employees showed off the facility's $6.4 million renovation to customers in a re-grand opening ceremony Oct. 25. The renovation began last October and included remodeling both the interior and exterior of the building, new BE FIT and customer service areas, a new Buy Online Pickup In Store service, new food court seating, polished concrete floors and a mural hero wall in the mall entrance, as well as infrastructure and other improvements.

The new Kittyhawk Satellite Pharmacy officially opened for business Nov. 13 in Kittyhawk Center, Area A, across from the gas station, replacing its former location adjacent to the commissary. The $10 million facility includes upgrades like a modernized drive-thru lane, state-of-the-art dispensing equipment to enhance safety and double the lobby and processing space. These new features are designed to increase the efficiency of the pharmacy.

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