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Top cop visits Moody, discusses future of base defense

  • Published
  • By Staff Sgt. Devin Boyer
  • 23d Wing Public Affairs

The U.S. Air Force’s top cop, Brig. Gen. Roy W. Collins, director of Security Forces, and deputy chief of staff for Logistics, Engineering and Force Protection, Headquarters USAF, met with Airmen during his first visit to Moody Air Force Base, Georgia, April 29 - 30, 2021.

Collins engaged with Defenders from the 820th Base Defense Group, composed of three squadrons who provide high-risk force protection and integrated base defense for expeditionary air forces.

“This visit was about coming out and seeing the 820th and then looking at the base defense mindset that they bring to the mission every single day,” Collins said. “What most people don't know about the 820th is that they do a lot of the things that get after the core of who we are on a day-to-day basis.”

Collins said the security forces career field hasn’t yet adopted the base defense mindset and culture across the entire enterprise, but expressed the importance of doing so. Some Airmen view security forces as just law enforcement, but the range of training for Defenders is vast.

“(Base defense Airmen) are always highly requested for the mission sets that we have that I would say are unique in nature, but should be something that we do daily,” he said. “As we kind of start to move towards the (Agile Combat Employment) construct, the 820th is better suited right now to get after that mission set versus how the rest of the enterprise catches up with organizing, training and equipping to be ready for that particular mission set.”

One of Collins’ priorities for the career field is to build upon the foundation and transcending base defense from “qualified” to “proficient.”

“Our defenders are getting additional repetitions, so that every time they're put in the situation, they've had the exposure, they've had the training, and they're equipped to be proficient,” Collins said.

The 820th BDG has modernized their training, by enabling Moody’s base defense Airmen to facilitate large scale exercises on a more frequent basis using emerging technology. They run robust virtual simulations, which Collins observed first-hand.

“If they could run it 40 times in a virtual environment, utilizing technology, when they get to the field, they've seen it so much that it becomes an unconscious response, and it's like magic,” Collins said.

While Collins’ wants to get after modernizing training, he also hopes Defenders around the globe can get the same training regardless of their base of operations.

“Another priority is standardizing how we are equipped as a force, so that no matter where our defenders go in the world, it looks the same to them -- they're trained the same, and they understand how each defender should be outfitted and prepared for that particular mission set,” he said.

By standardizing the training, Defenders become force multipliers. Collins said he wants the same when it comes to culture.

“Coming here and looking at how they embed that culture in the 820th, and how we embed it in many of our squadrons out there, is something that we got to extract and do across the enterprise,” he said. “When I say across the enterprise, I'm talking 38,000 total force defenders having that same base defense mindset to secure our installations and protect our people and ensure mission success.”

Collins plans to come back to Moody AFB during his time as security forces director to continue engaging with base defense Airmen.