JOINT BASE CHARLESTON, SOUTH CAROLINA –
Maj. Gen. Christopher J. Bence, U.S. Air Force Expeditionary Center (EC) commander, Chief Master Sgt. Larry Williams, U.S. Air Force EC command chief and their spouses visited here Dec. 13-15 touring various facilities across the installation to get a first-hand look at Joint Base Charleston’s operations.
The EC is the Air Force's Center of Excellence for advanced mobility and combat support training and education.
The tour of JB Charleston gave Bence and Williams a chance to meet with members of Team Charleston and discuss their daily operations. Williams also hosted a breakfast to connect with junior enlisted members and get a better understanding of the obstacles they face.
Their spouses, Wendy Bence and Lisa Williams, also had the opportunity to interact with JB Charleston spouses and visit installation support agencies.
The visit culminated with an All Call that allowed Bence and Williams to introduce Team Charleston to their families, explain the vision, goals and priorities of the EC and how Charleston fits into that mission. After the 30-minute briefing they took questions from the audience.
“By traveling to joint bases, we get to hear from our Airmen, Soldiers, Coast Guardsmen, Marines and Sailors which is a really fantastic opportunity,” said Bence. “We love being able to see different organization’s innovative ideas and best practices. We can take them back to Air Mobility Command Headquarters and share the success stories and possibly apply them to other installations.”
JB Charleston is one of the three joint bases which falls under the command of the EC. The EC, based out of Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, New Jersey, additionally provides administrative control for three wings, one group and one expeditionary training school within AMC.
“Charleston is one of our joint bases providing installation support,” said Bence. “It is one of the premiere joint bases in the Department of Defense. With the Naval Weapons Station, we have Sailors, Soldiers, Marines and even some Coast Guardsmen, making it a total joint environment. The 437th Airlift Wing provides the flying side of things, but the 628th Air Base Wing provides the foundation and support to the entire joint base area.”
According to Bence and Williams the EC relies on four lines of effort to provide “Airpower From the Ground Up, From the Flightline to the Frontline.” The four lines of effort include joint basing and providing installation support, global en route operations, contingency response operations and expeditionary operations training.
“The 628th Air Base Wing is one of the best because of how far we’ve come over the last few years as a joint base,” said Williams. “Coming back it’s pretty incredible to see how Charleston never stops. We never stop learning, we never stop getting it right and will continually work to improve this base. I’m confident when we return next year we will be impressed by how much more has been accomplished.”