Thank you for your excellent participation in the recent AOG election! I think the election metrics speak for themselves! I’m sure Mark Volcheff very much appreciated the solid class support, as he becomes the third USAFA ’75 member of the AOG BOD, following Leon Smith-Harrison and Larry Fariss. Good luck to Mark in this position of service to our academy.
One thing that sets our class apart from most of our fellow alumni class group’s ability to rally for important causes and efforts is our ability to communicate across the class. I hope none of us takes that for granted! To that point, I tip my hat once again to our class squadron reps, Jim Carlson, Foster Bitton, Bill Estelle, and Marty Stytz for their efforts in keeping us in touch and informed.
Top-level Summary from the April CAS Meeting: (minutes will be posted shortly on the AOG website, under Board of Directors, AOG Governance, CAS, Meeting minutes)
As was indicated (again) via the election participation numbers, the past dozen years of USAFA graduating classes have markedly lower interest manifest in the AOG. This is not a new problem, but it is an important issue that needs the right attention. The CAS has enlisted two young grad volunteers to provide some solution options, and your CAS rep will join them in this effort to provide support and advice on this matter to the AOG BOD. If any of our classmates, particularly those who have off-spring graduates, have ideas about how the AOG can better appeal to and serve these classes since 1995 (hence capture their interest and participation), I’d love to hear from you.
Other topics discussed at the CAS meeting:
– Jennifer Bateman represented the Endowment and spoke on numerous topics of interest to USAFA and the AOG. The search for the new “single CEO” for the Endowment and AOG is underway and it is to be a careful and measured process. Jennifer is very well spoken and projects an outstanding image for the Endowment (even when talking about fund raising, her prime responsibility!).
– Cathy McClain, AOG Board chair provided a detailed update on the recent election.
– Marty Marcalongo, AOG CEO summarized recent AOG activities. Marty received a lot of credit from Cathy for organizing and executing a thorough election process and participation campaign.
– The Chapel renovation MILCON funds were redirected by AF to help rebuild Tyndall and restore Offutt from recent storms. Future of this chapel project is TBD at this time.
– The new visitor center complex planning is progressing, but slowly. This new commercial complex, including a new visitor center, is to be located just west of the Northgate exit from I-25, on both the north and south sides of Northgate Blvd. This is a public/private partnership between USAFA and Colorado Springs, and more conceptual details are available on Bill Estelle’s 75bestalive website.
– The CAS is working through its own participation challenges, with an eye toward active involvement from all graduating classes. (a few classes, young and old, have no active CAS delegate)
– We heard from the Academy and Comm Shops senior enlisted advisors, who talked about the recent plus-ups to the Squadron enlisted advisors (which were eliminated during active sequestration days) and are soon (2021) to be at the 2 per squadron manning level to provide enlisted perspective to the cadet squadrons and to help the AOCs. The Chiefs also updated us on the first, new NCO members of the USAFA faculty – a truly impressive group of people (four so far).
– Graduate Call-ins or ZOOM (virtual conferencing) for listen-only participation in CAS meetings is now possible; covered by a change in CAS operating instructions and approved by the AOG BOD.
– Finally, with Mark Volcheff moving onto the AOG BOD, I need a new “back-up” representative. If any of you are interested in serving via this avenue, please contact Jim Carlson and me. Thanks to Mark for being my wingman for the past two years, and to Jeff Hackett before that!
That’s the top level summary for April. Please let me know if you have questions or comments on the above, or on topics relating to the AOG.
Your Best Alive CAS Rep,