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Holidays offer a time for reflection

Gen. Janet Wolfenbarger, the Air Force Materiel Command commander, speaks to an audience of industry and government personnel at the Air Armament Symposium in Fort Walton Beach, Fla., Oct. 16. Wolfenbarger spoke about the state of her command and Eglin’s role within it at the 38th annual two-day symposium. Speakers from joint services and Air Force major commands shared the common thread of working together in a changing acquisition world. (U.S. Air Force photo/Samuel King Jr.)

(U.S. Air Force photo/Samuel King Jr.)

WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Ohio -- As the holidays approach, it's a fitting time to reflect on the past year. With all of the budget cuts/uncertainties and the corresponding furloughs and recent force management announcements, 2013 was a year filled with many challenges. It was also a year filled with many successes. Through the extraordinary determination and dedication of each and every member of our AFMC team, we continued to provide world-class warfighter support, despite the challenges.

We also declared full operational capability on the largest reorganization since AFMC's creation more than 20 years ago. The resulting organizational structure enabled more mission effective and cost effective operations across all our mission sets. Over the last year, we identified nearly $2.7 billion in savings or cost avoidance, and at the same time we improved readiness. Our first year has been full of resounding success stories, and 2014 promises to continue our positive trend.

I thank you for the service, professionalism, and diligence you exhibit each day. I also thank your families and loved ones who support the work you do and contribute so much to our mission. As you celebrate the season, please keep in your thoughts the more than 1,000 Airmen -- military and civilian -- deployed from across AFMC.

Safety never takes a holiday, even during this festive time of year. The winter season brings increased risks, so travel and celebrate with care. Sound risk management and thoughtful planning will help ensure a safe season for all.

Wolf and I wish each of you a joyous holiday, along with health and happiness in the New Year. We are proud to serve with you in the world's greatest Air Force.

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