We weren’t always perfect, but looking
back, that was never our goal. We knew there was something better than
perfection: perseverance. We always strive to be the ones who could come up with
faster and smarter ways of doing things. That mindset is probably what led us to
the Air Force. Our competitive spirit found a home here, but we had no idea how
far it would take us. Times of conflict challenged us in ways we had never
experienced and pushed us to create solutions the world had never seen.
We weren’t fearless or invincible. We were just driven enough to find the
answers that would make us victorious. Today we face a new set of challenges. In a world defined by silent threats and
invisible attacks, we need to embrace the unknown more than ever. The next
groundbreaking ideas belong in the hands of whoever creates them first. And it has
to be us. Second place is not an option because satisfaction with the status quo
is far more dangerous than trying to make a change and failing. So here’s your
wake-up call. We’re the greatest air force in the world today, but what about
tomorrow? Our enemies aren’t sleeping and neither can we.
Wake up your inner inventor. Ignite that flame of curiosity. And please, question
the way things are done because there’s always a better way. Be inspired by the
innovations happening right now: body armor made from unconventional
materials, 3d printed parts for our aircraft, and acquisition processes that
cut red tape and encourage collaboration. Every idea– big and small– has the
potential to keep us ahead of our adversaries. Some of history’s greatest
innovations started as quiet ripples. The Wright Brothers’ first flight only lasted 12 seconds and traveled 120 feet– 12 seconds and a hundred and twenty feet
that changed the world forever. Our entire Air Force stands on the
shoulders of those who had the courage to push new ideas forward and the
resilience to pull themselves up from lessons learned. Let’s embrace that
legacy of innovation and leadership let’s inspire those who follow us to
challenge the impossible and achieve the unimaginable. Leaders, empower your Airmen
to step forward and take risks without fear of failure, and Airmen, it’s up to you
to take that step. The tools for change are in your hands. “Excellence in all we
do” isn’t a demand for perfection. It’s a promise to always find a better
way. We fly, fight and win… together.
Aim high, Airman.