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Home : News : News
NEWS | Sept. 3, 2008

Randolph seeks two ambassadors to represent

By Susan Gandy 12th Flying Training Wing Public Affairs

Do you have what it takes to represent Randolph? 

The search for two ambassadors to represent Randolph Air Force Base in the San Antonio community in 2009 is now underway. 

"I highly recommend this program to everyone! Being an ambassador representing Randolph and the Air Force is the most remarkable thing I've had the privilege to be a part of since coming to San Antonio," said Senior Airman Jennifer Booth, Air Force Personnel Center, Staff Sgt. promotions specialist. 

Each year, Randolph active duty military and Department of Defense civilians are encouraged and eligible to apply for this program. 

Applicants must be at least 21 years of age as of February 2009 and assigned here through September. Candidates must also be nominated by their commanders or supervisors along with a letter of recommendation signed by their commander. 

As Randolph Ambassadors, selectees will be called upon to represent the base at a variety of activities throughout the year such as hospital visits, community parades, 4th of July activities, Celebrate America's Military Week, Fiesta activities and receptions. 

"The experiences and people I have met have been amazing. I remember visiting with veterans at the Audie Murphy Hospital; I don't think we can thank our veterans and war heroes enough. Undoubtedly, it has been an unforgettable experience that I highly recommend to all," Airman Booth said. "Our visit was only one small token of our appreciation, but it made a huge impact on those folks and it was inspiring to see their smiling faces. After being an Ambassador I have grown as a person and have a renewed sense of pride in all that we do." 

Base Ambassadors traditionally begin their responsibilities with the annual visit to the Audie Murphy Veterans Hospital in February. They will join installation commanders, area ambassadors and city officials to pay tribute to hospitalized veterans and visit with them at their bedsides. 

"People think being an Ambassador is all about Fiesta, but it is actually much more, said Senior Airman Vikas Kumar, 12th Aerospace Medical Squadron, aerospace physiology journeyman. "I still remember all the high-fives I got from young school children when I visited their special needs school. It was a heart-touching moment for me to personally get involved with these young children, play with them and teach them a little bit about the Air Force." 

The Ambassadors will have an opportunity to help kick-off Fiesta, which celebrates Texas' independence. Their duties during the annual 10-day Fiesta celebration play a large part in the military's outreach efforts in the community. Ambassadors will be showcased at approximately 60 events and runs from April 17-26. 

Col. Jacqueline Van Ovost, 12th FTW commander, said this about those considering applying for the Ambassador program: "They will have the opportunity to meet and socialize with many of the community leaders in San Antonio, growing with each experience. This is also their opportunity to be role models for the young people they will encounter at schools and community events. We are fortunate to live in a military friendly city where people embrace and whole-heartedly support us, and the ambassador program is an opportunity for us to express our appreciation back to this great community." 

A selection panel will interview the candidates December 4, and will select two ambassadors, one male and one female. Applicants will be evaluated based on appearance, bearing, communication skills, general knowledge of San Antonio, the Air Force and must be present for the panel interview. 

All applicants are encouraged to coordinate with commanders and supervisors to ensure duty schedules will permit participation in all activities and that no obligations, such as planned temporary duty assignments, school and other personal issues, will prevent them from performing ambassador duties. 

The best advice the current ambassadors, Airmen Booth and Kumar, have for those interested in applying for the position is to be flexible and that the job requires dedication, motivation and commitment. 

"This was an opportunity to be part of something bigger than myself, to reach out to the public and represent the Air Force throughout the San Antonio community," Airman Kumar said. "I have learned a lot from this experience and would encourage all Airmen to get involved with the community on this level." 

"The entire Ambassador program is something you'll never forget," Airman Booth said. "I would love to thank the board that believed in me and Airman Kumar to represent Randolph in 2008, as well as the local communities who have continued to support our military and its families. 

Randolph members interested in applying as an ambassador can pick up an application at the wing public affairs office in the west basement of the Taj, building 100, beginning Sept. 15. Interested applicants can call 652-4407 or 652-4410 for more information.