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New 8th Air Force commander lays out priorities

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Erin Trower
  • 8th Air Force Public Affairs
Commander’s calls are a military tradition that serve a much greater purpose than having a monthly or quarterly mandatory meeting. Most importantly, they serve as an opportunity for commanders to speak face-to-face with their Airmen about Air Force topics and to recognize members for their distinguished accomplishments.


Airmen assigned to the 8th Air Force attended their first commander’s call under their new commander, Maj. Gen. Thomas Bussiere, in the BUFF event center here yesterday.


Bussiere recognized quarterly award and diamond sharp winners, congratulated Air Force decoration recipients, and coined several Airmen for their involvement in a recent U.S. Strategic Command exercise, Global Thunder 17.


Bussiere also outlined his mission and vision for the “Mighty Eighth” and the priorities he wants his Airmen to focus on. It’s crucial for Airmen to fully understand the commander’s priorities, as they perform and execute their duties daily.


Mission: To safeguard the United States of America through strategic deterrence and global strike on demand


Vision: One force – Focused on discipline, excellence and pride – Continuously improving while strengthening our warrior culture and global strike capabilities


Priorities: Deter – Assure – Integrate – Execute


“We can literally affect anything on the planet in a matter of hours,” Bussiere said.


To operate safely and efficiently, there are three fundamental elements he believes every organization needs. These are discipline, excellence and pride, all of which encompass and instill the values Bussiere wants Airmen to embrace under his command.


“You all do something extremely important,” he continued. “Very rarely, because we are so busy, do we step back and reflect upon what we’re doing for our Air Force and our nation. Individual Airmen can make the difference between mission success and mission failure.”


Bussiere continued to explain the values of discipline and excellence. He explained that discipline is fundamental for what Airmen do for a living, and excellence is a necessary practice required in the work environment to successfully deter and assure using global strike capabilities.


Bussiere closed with a question and answer engagement, followed by a fleet of Airmen booming with a loud and proud “Mighty Eighth” upon his departure. 


The following Airmen were recognized for their contributions during the event:


Medal Recipients:

Meritorious Service Medal: Capt. Jason D. Bland

Meritorious Service Medal: Chief Master Sgt. Mark E. Brown

Air Force Commendation Medal: 2d Lt. Matthew P. Bruce


Quarterly Award Winners:

Airman Category: Senior Airman Marcel Forrest

Noncommissioned Officer Category: Tech. Sgt. Daniel Rivera

Senior Noncommissioned Officer Category: Master Sgt. Suhail Narvaez

Company Grade Officer Category: Maj. Tiffany Johnson

Field Grade Officer Category: Maj. Virnon Garrison

Civilian Category II: Mr. Douglas Skelton


Diamond Sharp Award Winners:

Airman 1st Class Mark Gonzalez

Senior Airman Ken Isham

Airman 1st Class Jeremy Tirso


Exercise Global Thunder Coin Recipients:

Maj. Jason Waldow

Master Sgt. Diana Miller,

Tech. Sgt. John Menendez

Tech. Sgt. Austin Waddell

Staff Sgt. Brittany Franklin

Mr. Jesse James

Mr. George Broadie

Mr. Christopher Morales