SECAF visits Vandenberg to discuss future of space power
By Airman 1st Class Wesley Carter , 30th Space Wing Public Affairs
/ Published November 24, 2008
VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. -- Secretary of the Air Force Michael B. Donley visited Vandenberg to meet with 14th Air Force leadership and tour the Joint Space Operations Center here Nov. 22.
Secretary Donley, the 22nd Air Force secretary, visited with Brig. Gen. Jay Santee, 14th Air Force vice commander, and Col. Richard Boltz, the 614th Air and Space Operations Center commander to discuss future plans on how the JSpOC and the 14th AF can continue to help combat Airmen in missions abroad.
"Secretary Donley took a tour of the JSpOC and visited with the Airmen on the operations floor who maintain our assets," said Colonel Boltz. "It was an opportunity for our Airmen to demonstrate how the JSpOC and 14th Air Force support the Department of Defense."
Tech. Sgt. Randy Magdaleno, a 533rd Training Squadron instructor, had the opportunity to not only meet Secretary Donley, but also brief him on the JSpOC's contribution to space power.
"It was an honor to brief somebody who is appointed by the president," Sergeant Magdaleno said. "It was my job to explain to him how the people in the JSpOC and at Vandenberg are able to help people fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan."
The trip followed the close of Air Force Week Los Angeles, where Secretary Donley gave the keynote address at the Air Force Association's Global Warfare Symposium. His speech highlighted the importance of working across the Department of Defense and with interagency partners with regard to space. The visit to Vandenberg allowed him to see first-hand what the JSpOC offers to the joint-warfighter.
"One of the top five priorities for the Air Force is modernizing our aging air and space fleets." General Santee said. "This visit allowed us some valuable time to speak directly with the Secretary of the Air Force and give him an idea of challenges and success that we are facing with regards to modernizing the JSpOC and the weapon systems operated by 14th Air Force."
While visiting the JSpOC, Secretary Donley was introduced and briefed on the current and future capabilities of the Unified Space Vault.
"The Unified Space Vault is the nexus between national space and other space partners; it allows the Air Force a full spectrum to execute missions in space," Colonel Boltz said. "Having the secretary see the capabilities of the Unified Space Vault allows the Air Force the ability to tap into this asset at the highest level of the Department of Defense."
Vandenberg takes pride in housing the 14th Air Force and the JSpOC. A visit by the Secretary of the Air Force speaks volumes about Vandenberg's assets in relation to the combat environment.
"This was a great day for the Vandenberg Team and the Air Force," General Santee said. "Secretary Donley's visit here makes a statement about the importance of Vandenberg and the JSpOC's mission as we continue to provide and maintain space capabilities to joint-forces providing strategic deterrence and fighting the Global War on Terrorism."