March 8, 2016 – Fifty-five Colorado Springs community leaders gathered for the State of the Base Wednesday, March 2, 2016, at Schriever Air Force Base, Colorado.
State of the Base provides an opportunity for Schriever leaders to strengthen relationships with Colorado Springs and El Paso County civic and community leaders.
“For any military installation to be successful, you have to have the support of the community,” said Col. Anthony Mastalir, 50th Space Wing vice commander. “Having a strong relationship with community leaders is critical because it really enhances our ability to accomplish the mission.”
Col. DeAnna Burt, 50 SW commander; Col. Damon Feltman, 310th Space Wing commander; Col. “Kel” Robinson, Missile Defense Agency and Missile Defense Integration and Operations Center assistant to the director; and other Schriever leadership welcomed attendees before briefing them on each of their organizations, challenges the installation is facing, partnerships with community organizations and the way forward.
The State of the Base format proved to be mutually beneficial to Schriever leadership and civic/community leaders in terms of communication.
“What was really fascinating to me was the level of community involvement,” said Bernadette Maisel, Space Foundation. “I didn’t realize the level of collaboration and the relationship that Schriever has with the community.”
Attendees also received the chance to tour the 2nd and 22nd Space Operations Squadrons.
“At the time Falcon Air Force Base was first erected, we didn’t talk a lot about the things we did out here,” said Mastalir. “Now we’re to the point where it is important that [community leaders] understand the significance of the mission. The global aspect of what the 50th Space Wing is charged to perform every day is really quite impressive, and helping them to see how we fortify our capability as an Air Force and how we enhance our capability to project power worldwide is critical.”
“To me, this event really helped put the pieces to a much bigger picture together,” said Maisel. “It was also pretty enlightening for me to see what a big mission Schriever has and the role they play in the [local] community and in the space community. It is inspiring to me to see the small number of people here doing such a large mission.”
Schriever leadership agrees the event was successful, and plans to change State of the Base from an annual to a semi-annual event.
“This was an outstanding event,” said Mastalir. “The most heartening aspect of State of the Base was the overwhelming support in attendance. We were really pleased. The showing of support that we saw just underscores the fact that a high level of support is available to us within our community, and it is a nice reminder of the opportunities and benefits we have as part of the Colorado Springs and El Paso County community.”