Lead Striker visits Kirtland, addresses AFGSC Airmen

  • Published
  • By Jim Fisher
  • Kirtland PA

Gen. Timothy Ray, Air Force Global Strike Command commander, visited with Airmen here Feb. 19 - 20 during a visit to Kirtland Air Force Base, New Mexico.

This was Ray’s first visit to Kirtland since taking command of AFGSC in August 2018. Kirtland’s host wing, the 377th Air Base Wing, is an AFGSC unit.

The general used the visit as an opportunity to have meals with 377th ABW Airmen, receive briefings and meet with wing leadership and key spouses. He also addressed Striker Airmen at an all call.

During the address, Ray asserted the importance of perspective and how this determines focus.

“I’m asking that you consider that the reason why you come to work is to build the best air and space force on the planet,” Ray said. “Not for the fame, not for the perfection, not for anything other than to say this is worthy work.”

Ray said achieving lethality is less a matter of resources and more a matter of overcoming challenges situation by situation.

“I want to drive home to you the idea that this is always going to be about pushing our boundaries and our barriers, because you have a lot of teammates that count on you,” Ray said. “Lethality, ladies and gentlemen, is not a game of dollars. It’s a game of inches--the inches between your left and your right ears.”

This mentality, he said, drives people to achieve excellence; to form integrated teams; and results in not only successful mission accomplishment, but taking care of the Air Force’s most important resource--people.

Kirtland’s unique mix of organizations exemplifies the need for teamwork, he explained.

“You’ve got the most amazing collection of mission partners on the planet,” Ray said, adding that Kirtland’s missions demanded, “constantly growing leaders and teams to create tactical solutions.”

This includes innovation. The general charged his senior NCOs with guiding problem solving.

“As senior NCOs, innovation is your job. You are the experts in how things happen every day,” Ray said. “If you have a better idea, you have total license from me to innovate.”

Ray explained that Global Strike Command has focused on the concept of deterrence in the past, but the present and future call for a focus on warfighting.

“Deterrence is the threat, warfighting is the promise,” Ray said. “When you look at the [process] of compete, deter and win, the most important word is compete.”