U.S. lawmaker speaks at flag officer course



by Donovan Jackson
Air University Public Affairs


9/20/2013 - MAXWELL AIR FORCE BASE, Al  -- U.S. Rep. Terri Sewell, D-Ala., visited Maxwell to speak with senior flag officers Monday at the Joint Flag Officer Warfighting Course.

This was Sewell's first time speaking before military senior flag officers at Maxwell. "I'm always in amazement when I get a chance to come to Maxwell Air Force Base," said Sewell. "Today, I got the opportunity to not only meet with its leadership but meet generals from all over the country in the different service branches."

During her time meeting with one- and two-star generals, Sewell said they discussed the current sequestration and its upcoming debate within Congress.

"We talked for a bit about the sequestration," said Sewell. "The fact of the matter is, we are living under sequestration currently, where there are across-the-board cuts instead of strategic cuts. I think that budgetary concerns are on the minds of all of us who are in leadership positions. I'm looking forward to the resolution debate on the debt limit that will be discussed in Congress in late September or early October."

In light of sequestration discussions, Sewell said that she was very impressed by the leadership at Maxwell.

"I was just awestricken by the qualified leadership that we have in our military. It was a really great opportunity to have a one-on-one conversation with top military officials. I feel like our military is in excellent hands. This trip has added to my excitement to now be representing some parts of Montgomery," she said.

The Joint Flag Officer Warfighting Course prepares two-star general officers of the four services for theater-level combat leadership. It is tailored to provide future theater combatant commanders and service component and joint task force commanders with a broad perspective on the strategic and operational levels of war. Instruction for the course comes from senior national civilian and military representatives, flag officers serving as combatant commanders and retired, battle-tested officers.

Elected on Nov. 2, 2010, Sewell is the congresswoman for the 7th district of Alabama, which includes parts of the cities of Birmingham, Montgomery and Tuscaloosa, as well as the counties of Alabama's Black Belt.

Sewell is the first African American woman to represent Alabama in Congress.