Diversity is Our Strength

  • Published
  • Air Force Reserve Command

Heroes of the Air Force Reserve,

This is a somber time in our country. Many of us witnessed the protests erupting across the nation, sparked by the deaths of Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, and George Floyd. The deaths of these Americans reflect the inequalities and disparities within our society. You may have asked, ‘how are we still dealing with racism and bigotry 56 years after the Civil Rights Act was signed outlawing discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, or national origin?’ Good question, to which there may be no satisfactory answer.

Our society is imperfect, but each of us can make positive changes within our spheres of influence. The Command Chief and I have taken steps every day of our careers to foster an environment where every Reserve Citizen Airman is treated fairly, is valued, and feels their contributions are valued regardless of race, ethnicity, gender or orientation…and we will not stop. But there is more that we all can do. The Command Chief and I have already begun exploring ways we can engender a more equitable environment within the Air Force Reserve. We encourage you to begin by taking this opportunity to have those tough conversations about our values and treating everyone with decency, respect and equality, especially with regard to race. Often times it is hard to have these discussions, yet respectful and apolitical conversations have served as a catalyst for change and are the bedrock this country will survive on. It shows you care. This is also a time for self-reflection and understanding that we may have unconscious bias.

Our diversity is our strength. Our individual, unique perspectives makes us an effective team. What binds our team together is greater than what separates us. Remain true to our core values – Integrity first, Service before self, and Excellence in all we do. Racism does not fit within these values. There is zero tolerance for this within our ranks, and any semblance will be rooted out. Our Equal Opportunity and Inspector General’s offices are excellent resources for our Reserve Citizen Airmen.

The Command Chief and I appreciate you – you are a part of the Air Force Reserve family. Be there for each other and we will be stronger for it.

Thanks for all you do. We are proud to serve alongside you.

TIMOTHY C. WHITE JR.                                                                                 RICHARD W. SCOBEE
Chief Master Sergeant, USAF                                                                         Lieutenant General, USAF
Command Chief                                                                                              Commander