Air Force, civilian leaders share perspectives at NSF
Members of the base honor guard perform a memorial ceremony demonstration for the more than 100 business and community leaders attending the 60th Annual National Security Forum, here, May 8. The Secretary of the Air Force sponsored forum offers NSF guests and the AWC student body the opportunity to discuss issues facing the service in todays and future operating environments. In addition to lectures, NSF guests experienced first-hand the processing line Airmen go through before leaving on deployment and a military working dog demonstration. (U.S. Air Force photo by Donna Burnett)
Air Force, civilian leaders share perspectives at NSF

by Master Sgt. Michael Voss
Air University Public Affairs

5/16/2013 - MAXWELL AIR FORCE BASE, Ala.- -- Business and community leaders from across the country converged on Maxwell May 7-10 to take part in the 60th annual National Security Forum, the capstone event for Air War College.

More than 80 NSF guests attended the secretary of the Air Force-sponsored forum, which allows for open dialogue between guests and AWC students, faculty and senior leaders on international and national security issues impacting the Air Force, Department of Defense and nation.

This year's theme for NSF was "The Rebalance Toward the Asia-Pacific Region and Beyond: Implications for U.S. Grand Strategy."

During NSF, guests attended lectures on topics related to the theme, shared their thoughts and perspectives on the issues with AWC students and faculty during seminar sessions, panels and briefings and even experienced an Airman's pre-deployment process by walking through a mock deployment line.

"Any country that is fortunate enough to have the greatest armed forces in the world, which we do, has an obligation as citizens to do what they can to support them," said NSF mentor, Warren Tichenor, who has been an NSF guest since 2006 and served as the nation's 17th ambassador to the United Nations. "The NSF is one way for me and many others to show my support to the military."

NSF participants are nominated by AWC faculty, students, NSF alumni, major commands and the Air Staff for a variety of reasons, including their ability to engage in a rich exchange of ideas with AWC students, who are all senior Air Force, joint and international officers and government civilians learning to lead at the strategic level.

"The end-point of a good seminar discussion is not that everyone comes to the same conclusion, but that everyone learns something from the multitude of perspectives presented," said Col. Tony Millican, NSF director at AWC. "One of the desired outcomes of the NSF is that students develop relationships with members of the civilian community from across the nation. These lifelong relations often pay off untold dividends when a crisis arises."