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Engage with the Chamber's Military Affairs Committee

The Abilene community recently won the first-ever Barksdale trophy for best community support for a Global Strike Command. Read more about the Barksdale trophy here.

Fellow AYP Member,

I hope this email finds you well and that you had a great 4th of July holiday. As a member of the steering committee of AYP, I can tell you that there is a considerable amount of time spent in our monthly planning meetings discussing how we can provide more value to our membership. Along with the monthly networking activities, we’ve started two independent initiatives with Get On Board and Campus Connect to try and provide opportunities for our members to join local non-profit boards that are seeking our leadership and to help retain our local college students through a one-on-one mentor program with our members.

Today I write to encourage you to also consider engaging with a longstanding committee of the Abilene Chamber of Commerce, the Military Affairs Committee, or more commonly referred to as MAC. The Military Affairs Committee exists for a few primary reasons.

First and foremost, MAC exists to ensure that all of the men and women of our military who are stationed at Dyess Air Force Base know and appreciate that we support them in all of their missions, both professionally and personally. Members of the MAC are frequently invited to go out to Dyess for social events, tours, seminars, etc. to mix and mingle with the Airmen to show that their community is behind them. Chaired by Gray Bridwell, the Military Affairs Committee has done so well at supporting Dyess that the Air Force’s community support award is now known as the “Abilene Trophy” because of how many times it was won by Dyess/Abilene.

Second, the men and women who serve at Dyess can’t lobby on the federal and state levels for the base. You may have heard recently that the Air Force is planning to station the new B-21 Raider at Dyess. You might also assume that a lot of other communities would want the B-21 stationed at their base and you’d be right. Only a few Air Force bases will have the privilege of housing the B-21, and the MAC has known for years that the new bomber was coming to eventually replace the B-1. MAC members have spent a substantial amount of time engaging with Members of Congress, Senators and leaders at the Pentagon to ensure they know how much Abilene wants the B-21 and why Dyess Air Force Base is ideally suited for its mission.

Last but not least, it's important to realize that many of the Airmen at Dyess are young professionals. They're working to build their career, they have young families, and they're looking to engage with Abilenians their own age. It's important for Airmen to participate in professional opportunities for their career just like us.

On July 25 from 2:00 - 4:00 pm at the Abilene Chamber of Commerce, MAC is hosting a "MAC 101" for potential members who are interested in learning more about joining. It will be an in-depth explanation of the mission of MAC and Dyess and why we need more young professionals engaged. If you can’t make it for the full two hours, feel free to come by for however long your schedule allows. If you can make it, please RSVP to our AYP Staff Liaison HERE.

Want more information on MAC, but can’t make the meeting? Click here.

I hope to see you at our monthly event this Thursday, 7/12 from 5:30-7:00 at the SODA District Courtyard at 834 S 3rd.

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