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ANG Deputy Director visits Washington ANG

  • Published
  • By Kimberly Burke
  • Western Air Defense Sector

JOINT BASE LEWIS-MCCHORD, Wash. -- Washington Air National Guard senior leaders welcomed the U.S. Air Force Maj. Gen. Duke Pirak, deputy director, Air National Guard, during a visit to Joint Base Lewis-McChord and Camp Murray, Washington, Oct. 27, 2022.

During his visit to the Western Air Defense Sector, Pirak received an Operation Noble Eagle mission brief. ONE is the federal mission that deters, denies, and defeats potential threats to the U.S. and Canadian airspace around the clock under the command of North American Aerospace Defense Command.

Pirak had an opportunity to walk around the WADS operations floor and speak with Airmen about their job responsibilities in the data links, weapons control, air picture management, and command and control sections. WADS leadership talked about how mission-ready, multi-capable, WADS Airmen are, innovating and advancing the theme of agile combat employment in battle management.

While on the operations floor, Pirak recognized WADS superior performers by coining Staff Sgt. Simin Waters, enterprise systems technician, 225th Support Squadron, and Tech. Sgt. Jordon Schaefer, weapons director, 225th Air Defense Squadron.

Pirak held an all-call at the Pierce County Readiness Center on Camp Murray where members of WADS and the 194th Wing were recognized for winning the Larry O. Spencer Innovation Award for 2020 and 2021. The award recognizes the individual and/or team who demonstrates innovation in cost and manpower savings to improve efficiency, operational readiness and replication of the innovation across the Air Force enterprise.

The Washington ANG Innovation Team developed the U.S. Air Force’s first artificial intelligence/machine learning- backed battle management training system that is capable of scaling across the entire tactical C2 enterprise. Battle Management Training Next is a cutting-edge video game-like training system that provides C2 battle management operators with sustained, high-quality, low-cost training repetitions. The team also stood up the first ANG state coder team, leading software builds for the Department of Defense next-generation C2 platform. The team continues to work with industry-leading software teams to build Joint All Domain Command and Control software “by the warfighter, for the warfighter.”

Following lunch with junior Airmen, Pirak visited the 194th Air Support Operations Group, 143rd Cyberspace Operations Squadron, 194th Intelligence Squadron, and 252nd Cyberspace Operations Group.

While learning about the unit’s respective missions, Pirak took the opportunity to recognize three superior performers in the 194th Wing: Tech. Sgt. Derek Henden, network technician, 143rd Cyberspace Operations Squadron; Staff Sgt. Brett Grace, cyber defense operations journeyman, 116th Air Support Operations Squadron; Staff Sgt, Kevin Snow, cyber transport technician, 194th Intelligence Squadron.