908th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron Welcomes New Commander

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Max Goldberg
  • 908th Airlift Wing

The commander of the 908th Airlift Wing’s Maintenance Group, Col. Gregory Halen, transferred command of the 908th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron to Lt. Col. Michael Allen during an Assumption of Command ceremony August 1, at Maxwell Air Force Base.

Allen’s previous assignment was as the Deputy Chief of the Operations Division at Headquarters Air Force Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps.

During the ceremony Halen highlighted some of the challenges of taking command.

“Being a commander is not a nine to five job, it never has been and in a maintenance organization it never will be,” Halen explained. “You have help as a commander, a lot of great help but ultimately the decisions and the responsibility are yours.”

Halen then reassured all that Allen was the best choice to lead the squadron.

“Finding a commander is not an easy task,” he said. “You’ve got to find the right person at the right time for the right things. I think in this case we got really lucky.”

During his comments, Allen addressed his expectations of the manner in which the wing will perform.

“We’re facing a lot of challenges, we’re nine months away from a deployment,” Allen stated. “Despite these challenges my vow to you is to always focus on the wing’s priorities, enhancing our combat capabilities and developing our Airmen. We still have a real enemy and we still have a real mission.”

Allen also emphasized the great responsibility that leaders have to their Airmen. The new commander introduced his first supervisor, retired Master Sgt. Gilbert Beavers, saying that an Airman’s first supervisor specifically plays a major role in shaping the rest of their career.

“First time supervisors have the largest impact on an Airman’s life and where they progress from there,” said Allen. “You can be the difference between whether or not that person chooses to re-enlist, you can be that motivating factor.”

This is Allen’s third squadron command, bringing a wealth of experience, which will help prepare the squadron’s ability to answer the nations call and deploy in support of her National Defense Strategy.