Airmen making waves with ACE

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Ryan Whitney
  • Nellis Public Affairs
Airmen arriving at their first duty-station often feel as if their opinion doesn't matter and that no one would listen to what they have to say simply because they are young Airmen. But a group of Airmen at Nellis have bonded together and formed an organization where the voice of young Airmen can reach the ears of key leadership positions throughout the base.

"Airmen Committed to Excellence," or the ACE Council, is a private organization that provides a forum to voice quality of life issues, route ideas, problems, and suggestions through the proper chains of command.

"We promote professional and self improvement, help improve morale, esprit de corps, and unity amongst the Airmen at Nellis," said Airman 1st Class Megan Knight, ACE Council president.

During monthly meetings, the ACE Council provides input and feedback from their units to command chiefs and first sergeants, who regularly attend the meetings.

"We need to hear from Airmen at all levels, and the ACE Council provides a forum for these young troops to offer us feedback in a non-threatening environment," said 99th Air Base Wing Command Chief Master Sgt. Britton Ellis. "This isn't just a gripe session - the Airmen can bring up problems along with solutions and are often held accountable for the implementation of those solutions."

The Airmen of ACE work together to come up with new ideas on issues they are facing. Being a member of ACE ensures Airmen have a voice and the knowledge to change and improve their surroundings.

"ACE Council is a private organization that doesn't have a membership fee," said Senior Airman Christine Franchi, ACE Council secretary. "Airmen who want to join simply need to attend one of the monthly meetings."

Because the meeting is in the middle of the day, it is understandable that some Airmen may not be able to attend the meeting. To keep those Airmen informed, an e-mail is sent out a day later highlighting all topics covered in the meeting and the names of those who attended, as well as being posted in the bulletin board in the Airmen's Center.

ACE Council also helps by volunteering their time to help with community and base projects. Much of the newly opened Nellis Airmen's Center's construction was volunteer work done by ACE Council throughout the entire 13 months of construction.

But they aren't all work and no play.

"Our biggest goal is to have fun - we live in a city were there are endless things for us to go explore and experience, and we take advantage of that every chance we get," Airman Knight said. "We recently went skydiving, and have future plans to go kayaking, mountain biking, rock climbing, paintball, boating and jet skiing, as well as having barbecues where Airmen can get together and enjoy food and entertainment in an alcohol-free environment."

They also have activities on base where everyone is invited. Recently, the Airmen of ACE Council held a "Summer Blowout Party" at the Nellis Airmen's Center, where food, games and entertainment were offered to any Airmen who stopped by.

"We try to bring all the Airmen at Nellis AFB together to give every Airman a chance to be a part of something and to meet people," said Airman Knight. "If you have the drive to succeed then ACE Council is the organization to be in involved in."

For more information about the ACE Council, call Airman Knight at 4-0629 or megan.knight@nellis.af.mil, or attend one of their monthly meetings held the first Tuesday of every month at 2:45 p.m. at the Nellis Airmen's Center.