MINOT AIR FORCE BASE, N.D. -- Chief Master Sgt. of the Air Force Kaleth O. Wright met with Airmen from the 5th Bomb Wing and 91st Missile Wing, as well as community leaders, during his first visit as CMSAF to Minot Air Force Base, North Dakota, Feb. 15-17, 2018.
Wright also had the opportunity to attend an Airman Leadership School graduation, a chief master sergeant induction ceremony and speak during an all-call.
While speaking with Airmen, Wright discussed some of his initiatives - which include ensuring all Airmen are well-trained and led. During his time as the top enlisted leader in the Air Force, Wright plans to create leadership development programs, focus on developing resilient Airmen to help maintain a strategic advantage, and eliminate unnecessary programs that take away from core missions.
“In conjunction with the secretary of the Air Force and the chief of staff of the Air Force, I’m right along with them in helping to remove some of the unnecessary computer-based trainings, additional duties and Air Force instructions,” Wright said. “We led the charge with the elimination of Airmen enlisted performance reports, and now we’re on a mission to listen to Airmen and give feedback.”
During the all-call, Wright also emphasized the importance of resiliency, leadership and being a good wingman.
“The most important characteristic I look for in leaders is character,” Wright said. “It’s great to be inspirational and influential, but nothing beats character - because that’s who you are deep down inside and what you stand for. Your word, how you treat people and deal with situations, matters. So, at the end of the day, if I had to select between being competent and having good character, I would choose character over competence every single time.”
According to Wright, character is strengthened by resiliency. He believes that being a comprehensively-fit Airman will help with the challenges the mission brings.
“Being in our United States Air Force is tough right now,” Wright said. “The duty here at Minot is tough, not just because of the conditions, but because of the requirements and what we ask you. Life is tough right now, and it’ll only get tougher, so we’ll have to figure out a better way.”
Wright added that with resiliency and good leadership, Airmen can overcome challenges and support the mission to the best of their ability.
“Every job in the U.S. Air Force is important,” Wright said. “It’s up to leaders in our Air Force to help connect Airmen to the mission. All of us play an important role in that mission, whether it’s directly though operations and maintenance, or indirectly through support. Sometimes it just takes us as leaders to connect our Airmen with the overall mission.”
Throughout his visit, Wright took time to bridge that connection with the Airmen he engaged with. He said, seeing the passion Team Minot has for the mission is something he will take back to the Pentagon.
“The key thing I would like Airmen to take away from my visit is how inspired I am by what they do,” Wright said. “I’m thoroughly impressed by the caliber of Airmen we have here, not only their mission, but also their enthusiasm. They have great leadership and lots of pride in what they do so I want every Airman to know that I’m thankful and happy to be a teammate and I appreciate everything they do.”