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Vandenberg observes Diversity Day

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. – Debbie Beal, Just Dance Lompoc assistant manager and instructor, and two other JDL instructors view the animal pelts displayed on the La Purisima Mission State Historic Park booth during this year’s Diversity Day at the Pacific Coast Club here Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2013. Vandenberg’s Diversity Day combined all annual cultural observances into one gala event of food, music, dance and displays. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Lael Huss)

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. – Debbie Beal, Just Dance Lompoc assistant manager and instructor, and two other JDL instructors view the animal pelts displayed on the La Purisima Mission State Historic Park booth during this year’s Diversity Day at the Pacific Coast Club here Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2013. Vandenberg’s Diversity Day combined all annual cultural observances into one gala event of food, music, dance and displays. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Lael Huss)

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. – Two well-dressed dolls flank the map of South America at the S. American Culture booth during this year’s annual Diversity Day at the Pacific Coast Club here Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2013. Diversity Day is the culmination of all the Department of Defense recognized monthly observances into one event. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Lael Huss)

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. – Two well-dressed dolls flank the map of South America at the S. American Culture booth during this year’s annual Diversity Day at the Pacific Coast Club here Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2013. Diversity Day is the culmination of all the Department of Defense recognized monthly observances into one event. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Lael Huss)

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. – Sadie Lee, mother of Master Sgt. Xzabrielle Lee, 30th Logistics Readiness Squadron logistics planner, performs an authentic Nigerian African dance during this year’s annual Cultural Diversity Day at the Pacific Coast Club here Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2013. Vandenberg’s Diversity Day combined all annual cultural observances into one gala event of food, music, dance and displays. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Lael Huss)

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. – Sadie Lee, mother of Master Sgt. Xzabrielle Lee, 30th Logistics Readiness Squadron logistics planner, performs an authentic Nigerian African dance during this year’s annual Cultural Diversity Day at the Pacific Coast Club here Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2013. Vandenberg’s Diversity Day combined all annual cultural observances into one gala event of food, music, dance and displays. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Lael Huss)

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. – Pauline Chui, 30th Space Wing Outreach Program manager, speaks about the Chinese New Year during this year’s annual Cultural Diversity Day at the Pacific Coast Club here Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2013. Diversity Day is the culmination of all the Department of Defense recognized monthly observances into one event. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Lael Huss)

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. – Pauline Chui, 30th Space Wing Outreach Program manager, speaks about the Chinese New Year during this year’s annual Cultural Diversity Day at the Pacific Coast Club here Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2013. Diversity Day is the culmination of all the Department of Defense recognized monthly observances into one event. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Lael Huss)

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. – Rickie Gable, 30th Space Wing anti-terrorism director, speaks about the Scottish culture at the Scotland booth during this year’s annual Cultural Diversity Day at the Pacific Coast Club here Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2013. Vandenberg’s Diversity Day combined all annual cultural observances into one gala event of food, music, dance and displays. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Lael Huss)

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. – Rickie Gable, 30th Space Wing anti-terrorism director, speaks about the Scottish culture at the Scotland booth during this year’s annual Cultural Diversity Day at the Pacific Coast Club here Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2013. Vandenberg’s Diversity Day combined all annual cultural observances into one gala event of food, music, dance and displays. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Lael Huss)

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif -- Vandenberg's Special Observance Committee, with 11 groups, units and agencies, hosted Diversity Day Aug. 21, 2013 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Pacific Coast Club here.

According to a Special Observance Committee member, Diversity Day is a day to celebrate the composite of individual characteristics, experiences and abilities that combine to enhance our all-volunteer total force.

"We hope that in learning about each other, we cultivate mutual respect and an environment that welcomes differences," said 1st Lt. Jennifer Kelley, 30th Operations Support Squadron Launch Weather officer and Special Observance Committee representative.

The Special Observance Committee is open to all Team Vandenberg members and operates through the 30th Space Wing Equal Opportunity Office.

"All volunteers run the committee," said Joanne Louie, 30th Force Support Squadron Human Resource specialist. "Committee members worked hard to get performers and door prize donations."

Committee members were tasked to create an educational exhibit for each of the following groups; African Americans, Asian Pacific Islanders, Hispanics, Native Americans, and Caucasians. There were also two social awareness exhibits for Women's History and Disabled Americans Chapel.

Both Kelley and Louie found Diversity Day to be one of the most important observances practiced here at Vandenberg.

"Diversity Day is significant because it brings awareness of how our differences may affect relationships at work," said Louie.

"The Special Observance Committee is given the opportunity to gather Team Vandenberg together to share what makes each of us unique and invaluable," said Kelley. "We have so many cultures and experiences surrounding us here at Vandenberg."

Participants were able to observe a wide range of events from zumba and salsa, to a Hawaiian violinist and a Scottish speaker.

In addition to the schedule, the Special Observance Committee hosted the, "30th Space Wing Amazing Race," where participants received a passport upon arrival and earned points for visiting each of the booths.

"People we work with, shop with, and live near have a richness of life to share with us that can only make our lives better, said Kelley. "This richness also gives the Air Force a core of unique skills, backgrounds, and outlooks to use in accomplishing the mission."