Airman’s life takes two major turns in one day


While Senior Airman Christopher Elszasz sat in the post-partum room with his newborn son and wife at a Montgomery hospital, still trying to comprehend how his life was about to change, he received an unexpected phone call from an even more unexpected source that would change is life even more.

The database administrator for the Training Business Area, assigned to Enterprise Logistics Systems Division at Maxwell-Gunter Annex here, was greeted at the hospital by his first sergeant, Senior Master Sgt. Marcus Washington, and superintendent, Chief Master Sgt. Lori Kelly. Once in the room, Kelly handed him her cell phone and said he had a call waiting.

Elszasz expected a coworker who perhaps couldn’t make it to the hospital to be on the line, but when he answered the phone an unfamiliar voice greeted him. General Ellen Pawlikowski, the commander of Air Force Materiel Command, congratulated Elszasz and informed him that she had selected him to continue his education and gain a commission. The Enterprise Logistics Systems Division falls under Pawlikowski’s command.

Elszasz had been chosen as the Air Force Materiel Command Senior Leader Commissioning Program-Active Duty Selectee. He is slated to leave active duty and attend the University of Colorado – Colorado Springs for the fall 2017 semester. While there, he will administratively report to Air Force ROTC Detachment 105 as he completes his degree. His next step will be to attend Officer Training School here to begin his journey as a commissioned officer.

“The timing of both life events - the birth of our son and selection for this program - has been a little overwhelming, but my wife and I are very excited and humbled by the opportunities the Air Force has afforded to us,” Elszasz said.

Richard Aldridge, the director/Program Executive Officer, Business and Enterprise Systems, doesn’t quite agree that Elszasz should be so humble.

“Senior Airman Elszasz’s precedence, performance and remarkable achievements, in such a short period of time, is the bench-mark for Airmen to follow,” Aldridge said. Elszasz’s division falls under BES.

Elszasz being selected to senior airman below-the-zone, serving as First Four president, and earning a Community College of the Air Force degree were just some of the achievements Aldridge noted.

With those achievements under his belt, Elszasz says he’s ready to start repaying the Air Force that’s put its trust in him.

“This program will allow me an opportunity to earn another quality degree, which will lay the foundation for my career as an Air Force officer.  I am excited about this opportunity and humbled by the trust the Air Force has placed in me,” he said.