B5 Systems

AFSOC Hosts Security Force Assistance Air Advisor Summit


Hurlburt Field, Fla. –Key members from across the Security Force Assistance and Air Advisor enterprise gathered here for a summit, 23-25 May.

The purpose of the summit was to gather expertise to plan and propose a way forward for cross-functional, Air Force-wide Security Force Assistance capabilities that can support higher-level guidance and Combatant Commander objectives and campaign plans.

The conference kicked off with opening remarks from Maj. Gen. Albert G. Miller, Headquarters U.S. Air Force Director of Training and Readiness, and included Col. Jocelyn Schermerhorn, AFSOC Director of Operations, Dr. Sean McFate, a foreign policy expert with a focus on National Security Strategy, and Ms. Beth Grill, RAND Corporation national security policy analyst.

During her remarks, Schermerhorn emphasized the importance of foundationally getting the structure of Air Advisors across the formation right.

“The strategic environment we’re in today is much different than the place we’ve operated for the last 20 years,” said Schermerhorn. “We have an opportunity to make sure that we get this right as we develop a sustainable capability from the ground up. We’re looking to your expertise to ensure that we get there.”

The National Security Strategy and National Defense Strategy details the need to develop diplomacy with our partners and allies – an area that SOF forces are uniquely suited to support.

“If we get this right, we’ll have a more deliberate, requirement-focused enterprise that spans across our formation with a significant return on investment,” said Schermerhorn.

Speakers, panelists, and audience members hailed from a variety of areas, such as International Affairs at Headquarters U.S. Air Force, the U.S. Army Security Force Assistance Command, Air Force Materiel Command, 621st Air Mobility Advisory Group, 571st Mobility Support Advisory Squadron, 435th Contingency Response Support Squadron, 36th Tactical Advisory Squadron, and several others.

The summit concluded with an out brief that detailed findings and made recommendations on a way forward for senior leaders to consider as they’re making decisions.

“Based on the work that I saw this week and the feedback we got from our senior leaders during our out brief – I’m confident that we were able to work together to propose a way forward that accomplishes the mission,” said Col Magill, Headquarters Air Force, Mobility Air Forces Division, air advising cross-functional manager. “Ultimately, we’re bringing back some great proposals that should integrate partners by design, enabling day-zero interoperability and combined effects.”

By Ciara Travis

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