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Leadership through accountability

  • Published
  • By Capt. Donnie Hatheway
  • 910th Airlift Wing Public Affairs

More than 40 flight commanders comprised of junior officers and senior enlisted members from across the 910th Airlift Wing gathered to participate in Air University’s Flight Commander’s Edge course, April 3-5, 2024, at Youngstown Air Reserve Station, Ohio.

The goal of FCE was to bolster leadership development and understanding of roles and responsibilities across the wing.

Briefers from both inside and outside the fenceline were invited to speak on leadership concepts ranging from the role of the flight commander to foundations of accountability, emotional intelligence, conflict management, debriefing to win and more.

“Everyone deserves good leadership,” said Col. Robert “Cujo” Teschner (ret), former fighter pilot and CEO of VMax Group. “Leadership equals accountability.”

FCE has become an annual course held here at the 910th, with this year’s theme being accountability as defined as taking absolute ownership of the outcomes we achieve.

“Accountability is a leadership function that drives engagement and is where the team goes to learn,” said Teschner.

Col. Michael Maloney, 910th Airlift Wing Commander, challenged the leaders in the room to be change agents for their workplaces, encouraging these Reserve Citizen Airmen to take the tools they learned throughout the course back into their spaces, incorporating them with their teams.

“Change doesn’t happen without everyone in this room,” said Maloney.
The participants quickly learned that their new leadership role brings about plenty of opportunities to make a difference.

“My ultimate goal of FCE was for everyone to walk away from the course feeling that it was a valuable use of their time,” said Capt. Jenna Winston, 910th Communications Squadron director of operations and FCE coordinator.

After three full days of lecture, discussion and activity, FCE participants parted ways with a commitment to further develop and lead not only themselves, but those Airmen above, below and around them.

“My key takeaway from the course was that empowerment to the Airmen that you supervise requires trust and emotional intelligence to recognize the situations that we can find ourselves in throughout the mission,” said Senior Master Sgt. Antonio Sbrocca, 910th Maintenance Group superintendent.

Speakers included: Col. Robert “Cujo” Teschner (ret), former fighter pilot and CEO of Vmax Group, FCE mentor Col. Chad Biehl, Col. Michael Maloney, 910th Airlift Wing commander, Col. Joseph Winchester, 910th Maintenance Group commander, Lt. Col. Russell Whitlock, 910th Mission Support Squadron commander, Maj. Melody Gemuend, 910th Force Support Squadron commander, Chief Master Sgt. Jessica Davis, 910th Emergency Management chief, Chief Master Sgt. Scott Zapolski, 910th Mission Support Group senior enlisted leader, Mrs. Camy Maloney, Key Support Program lead supporter, Karen Hazel-Johnson, 910th Airlift Wing chief prevention analyst and Terri Ann Naughton, 910th Airlift Wing director of psychological health. Capt. Jenna Winston, 910th Communications Squadron director of operations and Senior Master Sgt. Dominic Martini, 910th Security Forces Squadron operations superintendent, coordinated FCE.