Senior Airman Michael Roman, of the 94th Maintenance Group and president of the Dobbins First Four, and Airman 1st Class Dylan Brown, of the 94th Maintenance Group, sign up potential members for the First Four under the mentorship of the 56 Group. This tent, along with many other tents, housed places for Dobbins Air Reserve Base Airmen to gain information on various subjects from financial planning and education to volunteer opportunities at Family Day on June 3. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Elizabeth Gaston)
Senior Master Sgt. Joy E. Hughes, chief of education and training for the 94 Airlift Wing, mentors Senior Airman Cameron C. Janzen, 94th Airlift Wing honor guard member. Hughes is the current president of the Dobbins Top Three and will likely be among those called upon to mentor members of the First Four. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Elizabeth Gaston)
by Senior Airman Elizabeth Gaston
94th Airlift Wing Public Affairs
6/19/2012 - DOBBINS AIR RESERVE BASE, Ga. -- Until recently, Dobbins Air Reserve Base has had groups for its noncommissioned officers and senior noncommissioned officers, in the form of the Dobbins 56 Group, Top 3 Group and the Chiefs' Group.
Now, Dobbins ARB can proudly boast its own fully-operational First Four, specifically for the junior enlisted tier.
The First Four was initiated by former 56 Group presidents, Master Sgts. Robert Kane and Vanessa Miguel, and later revisited by Senior Airman Danielle Purnell, 94th Airlift Wing Public Affairs Specialist. Pernell is now in her final weeks of Officer Training School at Maxwell Air Force Base.
The mission of the Dobbins First Four is to enhance and maintain the camaraderie, esprit de corps and prestige of the junior enlisted Airmen while promoting mentorship, leadership, training and service, according to Purnell.
Members of the Dobbins First Four held their first full business meeting on June 2 at the Dobbins ARB baseball diamond, during which they discussed the future of the group in terms of actual projects and goals to be completed by the end of the calendar year.
Before Purnell left for OTS in April, she handed over her vision for the organization to the newly elected president, Senior Airman Michael K. Roman, of the 94th Maintenance Squadron.
"Airman Purnell started something great that we can all have ownership in," said Roman. "This base has a high operational tempo. The First Four will, hopefully, become a great outlet for junior enlisted to get involved in to add that little piece of total Airman fitness they may be needing."
The First Four has called upon members of all the upper tier groups and has received ample guidance from all levels.
"Young Airmen are our most precious resource," said Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force James A. Roy. "We owe Junior Enlisted Airmen the proper training, education and experiences it takes to develop them into leaders in their field. We owe them the mentorship and guidance they need to succeed, and they should be expected to do everything they can to meet the high standard set by the supervisor."
The officers of all the enlisted groups are working together on a plan to formalize a process for targeting mentors for any Dobbins Airmen that is in need.
In addition, the First Four is currently working on several service projects, many of which are in conjunction with other groups around Dobbins ARB.
June 30 Airmen will be on hand to staff tables, talk with family members of deployed Airmen and help the Dobbins Airmen and Family Readiness Office during "Care Package Day," where families will be invited to build care packages for their loved ones overseas.
Dobbins Airmen have also volunteered to help work a "Corn and Sausage Roast" alongside the Chief's Group. The roast is an event that is hosted by the local Square and Compass organization. This event will help raise money for the Dobbins ARB Emergency Fund.
An on-going opportunity that the First Four Airmen have recently become involved with is "Airmen Against Drunk Driving," a program organized by the Dobbins ARB Human Resource Development Council. Airmen volunteer their nights to remain on-call to act as designated drivers to any Reservist who needs a ride.
To augment these projects, the First Four draws its membership from, primarily, the 94th Airlift Wing. Dues are $12 a year.
Current projects that dues would be used for include the production of First Four t-shirts and coins, which would be made available to Reservists by the end of the year. Also, the group has high hopes to start a scholarship fund for Airmen to complete their Community College of the Air Force degrees.
If you would like to join the Dobbins First Four, would like more information on the group or any of the projects above, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call the 94th Airlift Wing Public Affairs Office at 678-655-5055.