WASHINGTON — The Office of the Air Force Reserve unveiled 13 portraits of Air Force Reserve leaders during the Profiles in Leadership display ceremony here Dec. 7. The display celebrates and honors citizen Airmen's contributions in serving the nation.
Col. Bruce Bender, the Air Force Reserve Command public affairs director, spent over a year curating the project to completion.
"These leaders were selected based on how integral they are in shaping our Air Force Reserve," Bender said. "Through the Profiles in Leadership project, citizen Airmen shared personal stories about how their service impacted their lives and made a difference to the Air Force Reserve."
The significance of the day was also not forgotten.
"The surprise attack on Pearl Harbor galvanized our nation and it also revealed the strength of our nation and highlighted the dedication and commitment of our troops," said Lt. Gen. James F. Jackson, the Air Force Reserve chief. "Today we honor their sacrifices and legacy by honoring those who have come after them."
The exhibit featured Airmen such as Maj. Gen. Stayce Harris, the first female numbered Air Force commander, and Col. Chris Cunningham, an emergency preparedness liaison officer for the state of Indiana. Their stories paint a mosaic of experiences illustrating how citizen Airmen use their civilian expertise to benefit the Air Force in a variety of ways.
Another honoree, Col. Melissa Coburn, a C-17 Globemaster III pilot and deputy director of mobilization in the office of the assistant secretary of defense, was at the ceremony to see her portrait presented to the crowd of reservists.
"I am truly honored to be among such great leaders who are part of this new display," she said. "I hope our stories help inspire the next generation of citizen Airmen."
Notable Airmen such as pararescue team leader Tech. Sgt. Daniel Warren is also among those featured in the exhibit. Warren was recognized for his heroism during a firefight in Afghanistan. He is also the recipient of a Bronze Star for valor and the prestigious MacKay Trophy.
Their stories are part of more than 70,000 reservists who serve in operations with active-duty forces around the globe. Whether it's through supporting disaster relief or combat insurgencies, Reserve Airmen answer the call of duty and contribute to the best Air Force in the world.
The Air Force Reserve plans to replace the portraits every year with leaders who make a significant impact to Air Force Reserve legacy. The display is a lasting testament to the proud tradition of excellence and service by America's citizen Airmen.
Portraits will be displayed in the Pentagon on the 5th floor, A ring, 10 1/2 corridor until further notice.
Leaders featured in the exhibit:
- Maj. Gen. Stayce Harris, the 22nd Air Force commander - Maj. Gen. Michael Kim, the mobilization assistant to AFRC commander - Maj. Gen. Ken Lewis, the director of air, space and operations at AFRC - Maj. Gen. Richard Scobee, the 10th Air Force commander - Col. Melissa Coburn, the deputy director of mobilization in the office of assistant secretary of defense - Col. Chris Cunningham, the individual mobilization augmentee emergency preparedness liaison officer for the state of Indiana - Col. John Tree, an Army and Air Force Exchange Service board member and CEO of Raymond Express International - Dr. Josef Schmid, a flight surgeon for NASA - Lt .Col. Brett Robison, a F-35 Lightning II pilot training lead at the Academic Training Center, Eglin Air Force Base, Florida - Maj. Dan Rooney, a 301st Fighter Squadron pilot and the founder/CEO of Folds of Honor Foundation - Master Sgt. Samuel Ameen, a broadcaster with the 4th Combat Camera Squadron - Tech. Sgt. Daniel Warren, a pararescue team leader