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Commentary: Get involved, support your AFIMSC family

Senior Master Sgt. Eric Peterson family photo

Senior Master Sgt. Eric Peterson, AFIMSC first sergeant, poses for a photo with his wife Billie and daughter Janelle. (Courtesy photo)

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-LACKLAND, Texas – This month, I officially hit nine months as the Air Force Installation and Mission Support Center first sergeant and, wow, it has been an amazing ride. 

There is so much going on in this organization that it is tough to keep up! Everyone I have been blessed to speak with has taught me something new about AFIMSC, the mission and, more importantly, themselves. 

Our people make the mission happen no matter what the cost. I’ve seen first-hand some of the obstacles our teammates have to endure while getting the mission done. While we all understand that challenging taskers, deadlines and projects come with the job, some fail to realize that some of our teammates face significant personal challenges every day as well, including relationship problems, financial issues, depression, anxiety, addiction … the list could go on. This is why the AFIMSC leadership team places such an emphasis on “Family & Fun.” 

Family is much bigger than what some may think. For me, I grew up with my family being those my father worked alongside in the Marines. I’ve never lived anywhere longer than six years, so I always grow my family outside of my blood relatives. 

While many might only think of family as those they go home to, it’s important to understand that not everyone has that ability and some of our AFIMSC teammates live alone. So when I speak of family, I’m also talking about those you “do life” with for the bulk of the day. 

Military, civilian and non-appropriated fund employees, and contractors make up our AFIMSC family. If we can “do life” together and not just co-exist next to each other…imagine the possibilities! When you consider your coworkers to be an extension of your family, daily stressors have a tendency to decrease a bit quicker, the mission gets done more effectively and people are happier to not just come to work, but to be around you!

What does all of this mean to you as a member of our AFIMSC family? I am asking you to get involved, support each other and participate in family fun and professional development events that aim to help the entire AFIMSC family connect and grow.  

Each event, designed by your peers, has a goal of bringing your home and work family together. Each event has you and your overall happiness in mind. They give you a chance to take a minute – even if it is only to take a quick walk around or engage with a social media post from one of your teammates – to connect with your brothers and sisters on a deeper level in this amazing organization. 

From our quarterly spirit weeks to our iMentor professional and personal development opportunities and more, every event fosters an environment of inclusion, dignity and respect for one another. And most importantly, every event is intended to make you a better version of yourself…so what is holding you back from investing it your future and family? 

How can you get involved? You can follow the official AFIMSC Facebook page, https://www.facebook.com/AirForceIMSC, or join the AFIMSC Round Table Facebook group, https://www.facebook.com/groups/IMSCRoundTable, to stay informed about upcoming events. 

You can also keep a look out for emails announcing quarterly fun events and professional and personal development opportunities for you and your family, and encourage people to participate. Finally, you can share your ideas about ways we can better foster a culture of Family & Fun across AFIMSC. Don’t be afraid to reach out to me … I’d love to hear from you!

Your organizational leaders love you and what you bring to our family. I am asking you to invest back into the family, even if it is just doing life with us. 

I hope you have a happy holiday season!