Airman provides opportunities for and inspires peers

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class J. Zuriel Lee
  • 97th Air Mobility Wing Public Affairs
Many Airmen are told before arriving to their first duty station that, "You get out of it what you put in," meaning if that Airman wants to have a good time at that duty station, he or she will have to put in the energy to make it a good assignment.

One of our Airmen put his energy into making his first duty station an enjoyable assignment for himself and for many other Airmen stationed here.

U.S. Air Force Senior Airman Jorge Guerrero, 97th Logistics Readiness Squadron hazardous material journeyman, used his urge to stay busy to create more opportunities for Airmen to enjoy themselves.

"I like to stay busy. I wanted to provide opportunities for Airmen to enjoy themselves by doing something they don't normally get the chance to do," said Guerrero.

Recalling his arrival to Altus AFB, Guerrero said that the common impression among Airmen was that there was nothing to do in the local area. He wanted to be sure that Airmen would have the opportunity to do something fun and adventurous or something that they would not normally do.

"If you want to do something, go out there and try," said Guerrero. "You have to give it a shot. If you don't try, it's always a zero percent success rate."

Guerrero almost immediately threw himself into volunteering, including the building of the base paintball field.

In September 2013, Guerrero joined the Single Airmen Initiative staff. After inquiring about trips for Airmen, he found that there were funds set aside for that purpose. By taking charge of the program, he became responsible for contacting companies to set up these trips. He soon after joined the Airmen Committed to Excellence council as well.

After a little while in office, he began making changes to the programs to benefit participating Airmen.

He began providing professional development events at the monthly ACE meetings, including pointers on enhancing personal Enlisted Performance Reports and talks with enlisted leadership. He also added more volunteering opportunities such as Bountiful Baskets every other Saturday and a food and clothing drive.

He then started a sub-committee for the council to allow another 10 Airmen to enhance their leadership skills and arranged for ACE to financially support the dorm council for activities.

With the Single Airmen Initiative, he opened the program to single Airmen of all ranks, but also allow married Airmen to participate if there is space available after single Airmen have signed up for events. He also received approval for increasing the trip range to the Dallas area and adding extreme sports to the list of activities.  Planning ahead, Airman Guerrero has arranged to have events happen every month, like painting and photography classes.

The attitudes of the Airmen inspire him to do what he does in these programs.

"I think this base has a good location," said Guerrero. "If we were in another place, like New York, we might not have these trips. It changes people's point of view of the base. I like making a difference for Airmen, seeing them have a good time and boosting their morale."