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2019 Spring Board Meeting, McConnell AFB

Thanks to Col Josh Olson  and his whole team at the 22nd Air Refueling Wing. A special thanks to MSgt Danielle Campos, Capt Ev Dotson, Maj Pat Miller, Maj Sierra Smith and Capt Jason Pravitz  A/TA’s Keeper of the Plains chapter vice president, outgoing president, incoming president, chapter logistics officer and chapter member for ensuring the success of our visit and productivity of our board meeting.

Without these professionals our meeting would not have happened!

Keeper of the Plains Chapter Pres Maj Miller, VP MSgt Campos with CMSgt (r) Kerver, Gen (r) McNabb & Col Moss with the KC135 & KC-46 in the background

Col Ken Moss, AMC/DA3 joined the seven members of the board, our Board of Advisor Chairman and key members of the A/TA support staff. We began the board meeting on Friday morning, 10 May 2019.  During the meeting Col Moss presented an update from AMC.  SMSgt Ian Evans, 22AMXS and Lt Col Wesley Spurlock, senior advisors for the Keeper of the Plains chapter offered a chapter update. The board members got down to business covering a range of topics including By-Law revisions, multiple proposals to increase value for our members, improving the role of the Board of Advisors and continuing the preparations for our 2019 convention in Orlando.

During this board meeting we incorporated a first. We used a Amazon Chime web-based capability to expand the meeting. Lt Col Alexander “Popeye” Fafinski, Col (ret) Brou Gautier and Lt Col Chris Kiser joined the board meeting remotely to update the board.  Lt Col Fafinski updated the board on several initiatives to build strategic partnerships with small businesses which, when complete, will provide our members discounted services and connections. Col Gautier presented updates on the association’s web-site and convention registration system which will greatly improve the convention experience for attendees. Finally, Lt Col Kiser, the Huyser chapter vice president gave the board a chapter update. The plan is to continue to refine the web-based expansion so others can “join” the board meeting virtually.

We also received a report from each of the officers which included reviewing the first quarter finances of 2019.

On Friday 10 May, the group met Airman from the 22 ARW for lunch at the dining facility. It is always encouraging and motivating to hear the stories of these great Airmen and tell them a little about A/TA and our time on Active Duty

The board members then went to McConnell’s flightline. We had the chance to walk through and visit with crewmembers of the venerable KC-135 Stratotanker, what a work horse that airplane has been, and continues to be, throughout the decades. We then spent some up-close-time with the brand new KC-46 Pegasus. The airplane will very soon be a game-changer in the tanker world. The team of operators and maintainers are justifiably very excited about the future of the air-refueling business.

Friday evening the group met at a social event hosted by the Friends of McConnell. We met for dinner on the patio of Stearman’s Bar & Grill at Stearman’s airfield. We were just a few feet from the runway with light aircraft doing pattern work.  It was a very pleasant evening getting to know the civic leaders from the local area.

In summary, we had a productive board meeting and it was a wonderful opportunity to “strengthen air mobility bonds!”

Well done and thanks McConnell, Keeper of the Plains chapter and the men and women of the 22nd Air Refueling Wing.

Our next board meeting is scheduled to meet at McGuire AFB, NJ on 2 and 3 August. If you live nearby and would like to attend or have questions contact the secretary at

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