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Command IMAs gather for Front Range CTA

PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. -- Approximately 350 Air Force Space Command and U.S. Air Force Academy individual mobilization augmentees met here at the officers’ club for the Front Range Command Training Assembly May 4 and 5. 

This is the third year the CTA has been held at Peterson AFB. The training provides “one-stop shopping” for the IMAs to accomplish the bulk of their annually-required ancillary training, as well as update them on the changing military environment and Reserve personnel programs. 

Previous CTAs were conducted at Vandenberg AFB, Calif., and Patrick AFB, Fla., in which 376 IMAs received training. The last CTA is scheduled for F.E. Warren AFB, Wyo., June 29-30 for all remaining AFSPC assigned IMAs. 

“During this CTA [we help] you get the required ancillary training out of the way so you can return to your active-duty unit [mission and] deployment ready,” said Maj. Gen. Thomas Taverney, AFSPC vice commander. General Taverney is the mobilization augmentee to the AFSPC commander 

Being mission ready is crucial for IMAs, as the majority of IMAs are heavily involved in AFSPC missions. 

“IMAs contribute significantly to the success of this command’s mission,” said Col. Roscoe Griffin, AFSPC director of Reserve Forces. “IMAs are involved in practically every aspect of space; we’re everywhere.” 

This involvement may go unnoticed by some since it can be hard to pick out the IMA in the total force group; they wear the same uniform and do the same job. However, last year’s IMA contributions were significant. 

The command’s 745 assigned reservists logged more than 150,000 man-days in fiscal year 2005 with an average of 500 IMAs on duty on any particular day. Nearly 300 unit and IMA reservists have been mobilized to support Operations Noble Eagle and Enduring Freedom. 

“Our volunteerism sustains critical AFSPC missions,” said Colonel Griffin. 

As the Air Force looks to cut 40,000 personnel from the force, IMAs were informed of the potential impact these cuts will have on them. Reserve forces have been identified that their share of the Air Force cuts is approximately 7,800 members. It is still unknown where the cuts will come from, but the command has made it clear that it does not want to lose any of its IMAs. 

“You’re critical to our mission,” said General Taverney. 

As the Air Force is cutting back to meet fiscal constraints, AFSPC is gaining new missions. IMA support is likely to be necessary for the new missions’ success also. 

“I believe AFSPC is the poster child for total force,” said the General Taverney. “We’re a command like no other…. We’re at the point now where you can’t tell the difference between an active-duty or a Reserve member. 

Throughout the two-day assembly, IMAs checked off requirements such as self aid and buddy care and law of armed conflict training, among many others. 

Aside from the training and update, the CTA exposed IMAs to the services available to them. This aspect is increasingly important as the commitment of a reservist has become more demanding. 

“It’s hardly a part-time job anymore. We appreciate you and all that you do,” said General Taverney.