Getting to know the new AFIMSC first sergeant

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  • AFIMSC Public Affairs

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-LACKLAND, Texas – Senior Master Sgt. Mary Robey is the new Air Force Installation and Mission Support Center first sergeant, or first shirt. In her new role, she advises the AFIMSC commander on the readiness, health, morale, welfare and quality of life of Airmen and families across the center to ensure a mission-ready force.

We asked the Philadelphia native a few questions about her career and her thoughts about serving as the AFIMSC first shirt.

When did you join the military?
I entered the Air Force delayed enlisted program the same year SpongeBob Square Pants started airing and I officially started my Air Force career when “Forgot About Dre” hit the Billboard Hot 100. (1999)

Can you tell us a little about your career leading up to this point? 
When I enlisted, I came in guaranteed security forces. My plan was to do four years, get out and go be a cop in New York. 

The problem I ran into was the Air Force thought it would be a good idea to drop me off at Tyndall Air Force Base in Panama City, Florida, for my first assignment - during spring break! Needless to say, my plan came and went quicker than a one-hit wonder. I figured I would just restart my plan; it’s only four more years. 

A career field of law enforcement, security and nuclear operations, technical training instruction, seven deployments and two Army international liaison officer missions later; here I am. I also went through the Army’s unarmed self-defense, pressure points and combatives course - the place I was introduced to the brachial stun.

Military medical provider: “Sergeant Robey, I’m not completely sure what caused your neck injury.”
Robey: “Me either, sir.”

What about joining the AFIMSC team as our new first sergeant has you the most excited? 
Even for a first sergeant, it’s unique. I love helping our “big A” Airmen by bringing a different perspective to the table and sharing my experiences. I’m also stoked to get out to our detachments to provide boots on the ground guidance and assistance. 

But I’m most excited to just get out and about. I love having fun and joking around with people.

What do you want the AFIMSC team to know about you? 
I’m not yelling, I talk loud and with my hands. I’m also not as mean as I look, at least I don’t think I am. 

What's something people would be surprised to know about you? 
I’m a certified hostage negotiator. 

And I love trash TV. I love it, love it. Especially since watching these kinds of shows require no thinking on my part. Jersey Shore is one of my favorites; yeah, buddy! 

Is there anything you would like to add? 
I’m married military to military. My husband is also in the security forces career field and he works at the Air Force Security Forces Center. We have five dogs – Doo-Doo, Gangsta-Ann, Pooty, Nanie and Mem-Monster – three of which I had zero intention of owning, and it doesn’t help that all five of them are from the clearance rack.