TEC Airman Leadership School Class 09-4 graduates
By Master Sgt. Mavi Smith, The I.G. Brown Air National Guard Training and Education Center
/ Published August 01, 2009
McGHEE TYSON AIR NATIONAL GUARD BASE, Tenn. -- The Paul H. Lankford Enlisted Professional Military Education Center honored the accomplishments of Airman Leadership School Class 09-4 in a graduation ceremony at Wilson Hall on the campus of the I.G. Brown Air National Guard Training and Education Center here, July 30.
The 52 airmen of Class 09-4 included members of the Air National Guard and Air Force Reserves. They represented 28 different states and a variety of Air Force specialty codes including the aerospace maintenance, finance and intelligence career fields.
"At the Training and Education Center, we strive to create an academic environment that promotes professionalism and personal growth," said Master Sgt. Bonnie McGuffin, the master of ceremony for the graduation and a team leader for the center. "We make every effort to further develop in our students the professional skills, knowledge, and attitudes required of leaders, supervisors and managers in today's rapidly changing Air Force."
Airman Leadership School is a 5-week in-residence course that prepares senior airmen for positions of greater responsibility by providing many of the leadership skills required of supervisors and reporting officials. The course enhances their development by strengthening their ability to lead, follow, and manage while they gain a broader understanding of the military profession.
"My instructor, Tech. Sgt. Robert Perry, was amazing," said Senior Airman James J. Brodginski, a structural apprentice from the 201st Red Horse Squadron, in Willow Grove, Pa., and a flight leader for his class. "You can tell when someone really cares, and he's one of those people. Sgt. Perry is first class."
Brodginski recently joined the Pennsylvania Air National Guard after an eight year break from the military. He is a home building contractor and was just elected Mayor of his home town of Warrior Run, Pa.
Service to nation and community is a big part of military service. It is also a big part of Airman Leadership School. Class 09-4 supported the Epilepsy Foundation of East Tennessee in their Mud Volleyball 2009 tournament and helped raise almost $15,000 for the program.
"Each of these great volunteers went above and beyond to help us," said Lynn Goad, director for the Epilepsy Foundation of East Tennessee. "They are some of the most hard working, kind-hearted, and wonderful people that I have ever met."
"We live in a word that not only needs study, it needs application," said Col. Richard B. Howard, commander of the Training and Education Center and the guest speaker for the ceremony. "Keep focused, keep learning, keep applying yourself because you are the leaders of the future, the experts of today. We need you."
Howard then presented the John L. Levitow Award, named for Medal of Honor recipient Sergeant John L. Levitow. This award is presented to the student ranked number one in the class based on academics, peer and instructor appraisals, and performance evaluations.
The top graduate and recipient of the John L. Levitow Award was Staff Sgt. Telshaun M. Davis, an avionics systems journeyman, from the 172nd Airlift Wing in Jackson, Miss.
The ceremony concluded with Davis leading the students, instructors and guests in reciting the Airman's Creed.