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Are you committed?

F.E. Warren AFB, Wyo. -- I recently retired from the Air Force after more than 29 years of uniformed service. I distinctly remember being asked by many when I was going to retire after I reached my 20-year point. The thought of retiring never crossed my mind, so my response was always I was making it a career. 

Why? Because I was committed to uniformed service, the Air Force and this nation. I wanted to be able to serve my country and make a difference. 

Today as a department of the Air Force civilian, I operate under the same premise I did as a uniformed member. I still don't watch the clock. My day is controlled by the amount of work I have to accomplish. 

Being responsible for 16 different staff agencies, each with totally non-related mission requirements and responsibilities, and overseeing the day-to-day operations of these agencies consumes much of my time. 

I try to give each and every one of them equal time and assistance when they need it.
What about the other opportunities out there that help consume our day? 

The months are filled with changes of command, retirements, promotions and various other functions throughout the base. Whether you get a personal invite or not, as long as it is open to all, do you attend them? I do. 

Why? It's important to meet the new people, make them feel wanted and welcome them to the team. 

It's important to say goodbye to those who have served, regardless of capacity, and tell them thanks for what they've done. 

And it is important to see different parts of the base, other organizations and meet the people who work in those organizations. 

It is also an opportunity to help. In today's environment of doing more with less, everybody can use a helping hand. So don't pass up a golden opportunity to help one of your fellow service members in uniform or not. 

Each of us should strive on a daily basis to make a difference. Each day we should come to work with the thought of making today better than yesterday. 

Whether it is your primary job, helping a coworker or lending a helping hand to someone else on the base, step out and make a difference. It is a good feeling. 

So I've used a lot of words but not a lot of detail to allow you to form your own opinion. Many of you will realize in vague terms I described our core values of integrity, service, and excellence. 

But the foundation for all of this is commitment. Are you committed?