Team Korea chief-selects honored

OSAN AIR BASE, Republic of Korea -- Eleven members of the 51st Fighter Wing, 8th Fighter Wing and 7th Air Force were recognized Saturday for their selections to chief master sergeant during the Team Korea Chief's Recognition Ceremony. There were 12 individuals selected for promotion, however one was unable to attend the ceremony.

"The ceremony recognizes those individuals who have made it to the pinnacle of their career and the enlisted force," said Chief Master Sgt. David Gouin, 51st Operations Group superintendent and Chiefs' Group president.

The individuals being recognized were:

- Senior Master Sgt. Courtney Davis, 8th Operations Support Squadron

- Senior Master Sgt. Dwight Eddings, 51st Security Forces Squadron

- Chief Master Sgt. William Holm, 8th Maintenance Group;

- Senior Master Sgt. Kenneth Lier, 607th Combat Communications Squadron

- Senior Master Sgt. Timothy Noonan, 51st Communication Squadron

- Senior Master Sgt. Raymond Paul, 51st Dental Squadron

- Senior Master Sgt. Ronald Peters, 607th Air and Space Communications Squadron

- Senior Master Sgt. Joseph Ryan, 51st Operations Support Squadron

- Senior Master Sgt. Patrick Simmons, 51st Services Squadron

- Senior Master Sgt. Jesus Siordia, 51st Munitions Squadron

- Senior Master Sgt. Johnny Victory, 25th Aircraft Maintenance Unit

- Senior Master Sgt. Eric Yocam, 7th Air Force

"These 12 new chiefs have become a part of the congressionally mandated top one percent of the enlisted force. This is a huge accomplishment, especially given that only one percent of the American population volunteers to serve in the military" said Chief Master Sgt. Ray Allen, 7th Air Force command chief master sergeant. "More importantly they have proven themselves as great leaders capable of great things. I am very proud to serve with each and every one of them."

Prior to the ceremony starting, each of the honorees was presented a medallion from Lt. Gen. Stephen Wood, 7th Air Force commander. Each medallion had the name of the honoree inscribed on it along with the chief master sergeant stripes and words about what is expected from a chief.

The guest speaker for the ceremony was Chief Master Sgt. David Popp, command chief master sergeant for Air Combat Command. During his speech, he talked about what it meant to him to be a "REAL" chief.

He said R stands for responsibility. At this level, chiefs are responsible for so much, and it's up to them to make sure it all gets done in a timely, accurate manner.

E stands for Example. Chiefs are looked up to by everyone else to see how Airmen should act.

Astands for Action. Actions speak louder than words. When the end of the day comes and something needs done, the chief should be able to act and ensure it's accomplished.

Lastly, L stands for leadership. Chief Popp explained everything rises and falls on leadership which entails three elements: good communication, courage and commitment.

Chief Gouin said he thought one of the most important parts of the event was the candle lighting ceremony.

"We had an individual from each rank light a candle for their rank," said Chief Gouin. "What this does is show the long journey each of the 12 people we were recognizing have taken to get to where they are now. It allows them to reflect where they came from and the various sacrifices they have made along the way."

Prior to the recognition ceremony, the chief and chief selects were given a three-day orientation seminar, which was hosted by Chief Allen.

"We tried to expose them to topics that would help them in their journey to become an effective chief," said Chief Gouin. "This included everything from being an effective chief to an overview of the North Korean regime."

They were also given a chance to interact with leadership, including all three command chiefs in 7th Air Force and the Pacific Air Forces command chief, as well as the 8th and 51st Fighter Wing, 7th Air Force and PACAF commanders.