Now is the time to prepare for operational inspection

  • Published
  • By Tech. Sgt. Jake Chappelle
  • 446th Airlift Wing Public Affairs
Dust off your Airman's Manual, brush up on your combat skills and mark your calendars. It's that time again. The operational readiness inspection, conducted by the Air Mobility Command Inspector General, is Oct. 25 to Nov. 1, 2009. 

In preparation, there will be a total of three operational readiness exercises in FY 2009. Airmen who are tasked for the ORI can voluntarily participate in the first ORE, Feb. 7-8. It is mandatory that tasked Reservists take part in the fly away OREs to Alpena ANG Base, Mich., May 2-8 and Sept. 12-18, 2009, and the ORI. 

The 446th Airlift Wing will be tested along with the lead 62nd Airlift Wing and the 89th Airlift Wing, Andrews AFB, Md. 

Why is the 446th Airlift Wing getting tested by AMC? 

"We go to war as our gaining command, which is AMC," said Lt. Col. William Pelster, 446th Mission Support Squadron commander. "We don't go to war as Air Force Reserve Command. We don't have the capability to participate in an ORI on our own because we are an associate wing, not a stand-alone wing. An example would be that we don't have a communication squadron, but the 62nd does. When we go to war, it's with the 62nd." 

Reservists who are tasked to participate should make sure their training is up to date and their civilian employers are informed on the dates. 

Lt. Col. Richard Poston, 97th Airlift Squadron, has been designated as the ORI project officer for the 446th AW. He is working out the details of the wing's participation in the ORI and preparation. 

"This inspection is a test of our go-to-war capabilities," said Colonel Poston. "We have a lot of experienced people in this wing, so I know we'll get the job done. Reservists who are new to the ORI process can go to our ORI veterans for advice on how to succeed." 

Some of those veterans are commanders and unit deployment managers. 

"The 446th has a commitment to participate in OREs and ORIs to keep up with the active duty," said Chief Master Sgt. Jeanmarie Kautzman, the 446th Mission Support Squadron unit deployment manager. 

"Everyone needs to work with their unit deployment managers to make sure mobility folders are updated and training is completed," said Colonel Poston. "I know everyone's busy with training and real-world requirements, but it's important to pay attention to the ORI now and bring a winning attitude to the process. We only have 24 UTA days until the inspection begins." 

ORI preparation doesn't have to be a grueling process. 

"The OREs are opportunities to smooth out practices and tweak our skills," said Colonel Poston. "Taking advantage of those opportunities will make us better when the big test comes."