Fourteenth Air Force provides updates to AFSPC commander on key JSpOC Initiatives

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. --

The men and women of 14th Air Force (Air Forces Strategic) met with and briefed Gen. Jay Raymond, the commander of Air Force Space Command, during his visit here Jan. 26.

14th AF is responsible for the organization, training, equipping, command and control, and employment of Air Force space forces to support operational plans and missions for U.S. Combatant Commanders and Air Component Commanders. 14th AF is the sole Numbered Air Force (NAF) for space and is the Air Force Component NAF to U.S. Strategic Command for space operations.

During his time with the men and women of 14th AF, Raymond visited the Joint Space Operations Center (JSpOC), the operational-level command and control center for space operations, which is primarily composed of Airmen from the 614th Air and Space Operations Center (AOC).  There he saw the efforts underway to expand the JSpOC’s role in support to theater combatant commanders and its contribution to delivering integrated space effects to theater.  Dubbed JSpOC 2.0, the initiative seeks to normalize space operations and instill a joint warfighting mindset in its operators whose focus is on enhancing multi-domain operations, ultimately producing the type of joint-minded Airmen needed to be future leaders in the joint force.

"We really appreciated the opportunity to brief General Raymond on the new organizational construct we are developing which will allow us to provide robust and synchronized space effects to theater commanders,” said Col. Mike Manor, commander, 614th AOC and JSpOC Director.

A major enabler of the JSpOC 2.0 initiative is the stand-up of the 614th Combat Training Squadron (CTS), activated Dec. 16, 2016.  The 614th CTS was created in order to implement and sustain enterprise-wide changes under the Space Training Transformation and Space Mission Force constructs.  It enables the 614th AOC to organize, train and equip its Airman to effectively operate through a contested space environment.

Raymond visited the facility, a repurposed missile-training facility, and toured classrooms, a JSpOC Mission System trainer and a Standardized Space Trainer.  He was briefed on the responsibilities of the 614th CTS which include training, standardization and evaluations, weapons and tactics, exercises and experimentation, system integration, Special Technical Operations support and weather.

"The 614 CTS has refocused on agile warfighting and to show General Raymond how we are moving toward that goal is tremendous," said Lt. Col. Nicole Petrucci, commander, 614th CTS.  "General Raymond was pleased with the progress the squadron has made since standup a little over a month ago."

Raymond’s central theme during an All Call at the base theater was the critical contributions space and cyberspace makes to joint warfighting and the importance of operating with a joint warfighting perspective.  He spoke fondly of his time leading 14th AF, saying it was, “the job I’d always dreamed of,” and that it enabled him to do the job he’d never dreamed he could get.

On the subject of developing joint leaders, remarking on his time as the first space officer to serve as the Headquarters U.S. Air Force Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations, Raymond said, “I did not want to be an experiment; I wanted to be the precedent.”  Citing another Air Force first, fellow space officer and 50th Space Wing Commander Col. DeAnna Burt was the first AFSPC officer to serve as the Air Expeditionary Wing Commander during the annual Red-Flag Exercise at Nellis Air Force Base, Nev.

What these milestone leadership opportunities amount to in Raymond’s view is a clear indication that the Air Force, and moreover the Department of Defense as a whole, has acknowledged the crucial importance of space to the joint fight.  He described that fight as, “global, multi-domain and multi-functional, and there is nothing we do as a joint force that is not enabled by space and cyber.”

In order to meet the challenges which lie ahead, Raymond revisited the principles he set forth in his Commander’s Initial Guidance and Intent.  “The Airmen of Air Force Space Command will be leaders in the joint fight and they will operate with a joint warfighting perspective.  We will be a responsive, ready and able component to USSTRATCOM.  We will be at the leading edge of Air Force multi-domain operations.  We will continue to enhance our capabilities through meaningful partnerships, and we will honor our commitment to the profession of arms.”

Raymond previously served as the 14th AF Commander before being tapped as the first non-rated officer to serve as Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations, Headquarters U.S. Air Force, Washington, D.C., in 2015.  Raymond assumed command of AFSPC in Oct. 2016.