By Airman 1st Class Rose Gudex
21st Space Wing Public Affairs Office
PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. — At the commander’s call held Aug. 4, Col. John E. Shaw, 21st Space Wing commander, accepted the 2013 General Thomas S. Moorman Jr. Award on behalf of the wing as well as drove home the message of excellence and being mission ready every day.
General William L. Shelton, Air Force Space Command commander, presented the award to the wing for being the best operational wing in Air Force Space Command.
Shelton went on to highlight what the wing brings to the fight.
“You’re our experts in ground based optics; you’re our experts in ground based radars. Nobody — nobody anywhere — does offensive space control like this wing. Obviously by winning this award, it indicates you do those jobs and you do them extremely well.”
On the note of excellence, Shaw said the 21 SW should always be striving for excellence in everything we do, adding that it’s an Air Force core value for a reason.
“If you continually pursue excellence, trying to be the very best that you can be, or that your team can be, or our wing can be, then we stay on the right track,” Shaw said.
Shaw further explained why doing our best in everything we do is so important when he talked about his inspection philosophy. He used two photos to drive home his point. On the left was a photo of a paint brush going over a patch of grass to indicate covering or hiding brown areas to ensure the lawn looked perfectly maintained and green; the other photo showed a patch of grass being fertilized and taken care of properly so over time the continual proper maintenance will result in a quality lawn.
“Painting grass to look green” is not how he wants to do business.
“That’s not how my inspection philosophy works,” Shaw said. “That’s not how the new Air Force inspection philosophy works. We don’t look at inspections as something can ramp up for. That’s not form of always being ready. That’s not being excellent. We’re going to be ready every single day. That’s what I need you to do.”
He added that the wing needs to do the job right all the time. 21 SW Airmen shouldn’t be patching things up or taking shortcuts whether or not there’s an inspection coming. The job and the mission need to be done right every single time.
“The idea of doing it right, being excellent all the time,” Shaw said. “That’s what I want us to do as a wing.”
Part of what helps the wing be excellent is Airmen and civilians improving and assessing themselves as well as correcting and learning from day-to-day challenges. He said if we continually do this, we will become better at what we do.
“We all have a responsibility to be doing this day-in and day-out and assessing ourselves,” Shaw said. “And if you keep doing that and you keep checking and cross-checking and taking constructive feedback when (someone) from above assesses you, then we’re going to be totally fine.”