HRDC: A foundation of heritage

ATLANTA, Ga. -- The 2008 Air Force Reserve Command's Human Resources Development Council(HRDC) Workshop rolled into Atlanta and held as its theme, "Faithful to a Proud Heritage." And what a proud heritage we have. 

As Airmen, we serve in the absolute best branch in the military in the absolute best country in the world and we have a rich history to show for it. The greatness, the pain, the struggles, and the successes of that history were highlighted during the HRDC conference. 

It was early Tuesday morning when we were blessed with an outstanding presentation by Maj. Gen James W. Graves, assistant to the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff for Reserve Matters, Washington, D.C. The presentation was entitled, "The American Experience." In this must-see presentation, General Graves took the audience on a trip through history and spoke gallantly about the struggles and the success of this great country from both a military and multicultural experience. He furthered with a piece about the role women, blacks, Native Americans and whites played in the overall success of the Lewis and Clark exploration. 

Another awesome moment came when two original Tuskegee Airmen, retired Master Sgt. Val Archer and Mr. Ray Williams told of their struggle and their fierce determination to defy expectations during an ugly time in America's history. And although they lived in substandard housing, ate in substandard chow halls, trained with substandard equipment, and were treated substandard because of their race and color, they prevailed and provided first class service. 

For many years HRDC has partnered with Tuskegee Airmen, Women in Aviation, League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) and other organizations to not only show support but to help recruit more women, blacks, and Hispanics. Our wing HRDC program sponsors several Dobbins Airmen to attend the aforementioned organizations' conferences. If you're interested, you may have the opportunity to participate. 

During my 19 years in the military, I have had the outstanding opportunity to work with
the finest men and women of many races, cultures and ideas from all over the world. The diversity those individuals brought to the fight was part of what made the experience exceptional. I got the opportunity to learn first-hand about their culture, their experiences, their struggles and their successes and I am a better person as a result of it. 

I realized early in my career that although we wear blue, it is essential to recognize people for who they are, as well as what they bring to the fight and the HRDC program has helped to create avenues by which to accomplish just that. In addition, HRDC was created to assist AFRC with human resource development issues, such as recruitment,
retention, diversity and inclusion, professional development and equal opportunity and treatment. Although the conference lasted four days the memories will last a life time. 

To learn more about our HRDC program by visiting our Web site: https://wwwaf.mil.94aw.afrc.af.mil/94ws/hrdc/default.asp.