In my first ‘official’ duty as your President, what a privilege and honor to represent our Association by attending the recent Army Special Operations Aviation Command change of command at Fort Liberty and inducting BG Phil Ryan into the Gold Honorable Order of Saint Michael (OSM) as part of his pre-change of command awards ceremony. The Gold OSM is the pinnacle of the AAAA recognition pillar, and BG Ryan’s incredible service and contributions to the Army and Army Aviation exemplify the spirit of this significant AAAA program.
That being said, what a productive few days the National Executive Group (NEG) had in Connecticut a few weeks ago in mid-June. Your AAAA team of MG (Ret.) Wally Golden, Senior Vice President; BG (Ret.) Tim Edens, Treasurer; MG (Ret.) Todd Royar, Secretary (thank you MG (Ret.) Jeff Schloesser and nominating committee for identifying and recruiting him to join the NEG!), and I… along with Bill Harris, Janis Arena, and Laura Arena enabling and facilitating the engagement… reviewed our strategic planning for the next 3-5 years for our current and future AAAA administrations.
Together with our Vice President for Membership, CW4 (Ret.) Becki Chambers; and Vice President for Chapters, LTC Jan (Ret.) Drabczuk, and our Chairman of the Strategic Planning Committee, COL (Ret.) Shelley Yarborough, we all worked through various issues ranging from the implications of the recently adopted AAAA By Laws revision, to the appointments of new AAAA National Members at Large and committee chairs. I could not be more pleased with the teamwork, initiatives, and innovations expressed by all. We are working hard to make sure that you, our members, have a professionally rewarding, relevant, and fun next few years.
We identified some specific areas that will need refinement in terms of written policies and procedures that will help our chapters maximize your membership benefits and your experience through Networking, Recognition, Voice, and Support. Those four pillars form the foundation of the AAAA mission statement to “Support the U.S. Army Aviation Soldier and Family.” Your NEG and AAAA executive support staff are 100% locked on that mission; we take it very seriously and want you to know every decision we make is using that statement as our standard. We are all motivated and look forward to providing the very best support to our members that we can.
The NEG will be working on developing and initiating a few new programs over the coming months, as well as identifying and announcing our AAAA National Members at Large appointments and AAAA committee chair positions. Please, when you get messages from us through email, see our social media posts, or read something in the magazine that you have questions about or even disagree with, let us know. Your AAAA National Executive Board, and especially those of us in your National Executive Group leadership, are here to serve you. We depend on all of you for feedback.
We hope to see many of you at the upcoming ASE Symposium at the Von Braun Center in Huntsville, AL September 11-12. And we are hard at work preparing for the Cribbins Readiness Conference, November 13-15, also in Huntsville; the Luther Jones Depot Forum in Corpus Christi, TX, December 5-6; and next year’s annual Summit in Denver, CO, April 24-26, 2024. Go to the AAAA website at www.quad-a.org/events for more information.
Again, I’m honored to have my turn as your AAAA President, and I truly look forward to working with you our members – Active, National Guard, Reserve, DAC, Industry, Veterans and Retired – to maximize the AAAA experience, and have a great time doing it!
MG Walt Davis, U.S. Army Retired
36th President, AAAA