U.S. Army Maj. Gen. Timothy E. Gowen, adjutant general for Maryland, visited with 175th Wing Airmen at Martin State Airport, Middle River, Md., October 6, 2019 during their regularly scheduled drill weekend. The visit was Gowen’s initial appearance at the Maryland Air National Guard base since taking command as Maryland’s 30th adjutant general.
Gowen met with the Wing command staff for an overview brief before setting off to tour the base facilities. The intent of his visit was to familiarize himself with the 175th Wing’s missions and capabilities as well as meet the Airmen who make it happen.
One of the major missions of the 175th Wing revolves around the A-10C Thunderbolt II aircraft and Gowen was able to see the aircraft up close while speaking with Airmen from the 175th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron.
“We have one of the most high performing A-10 squadrons in the entire Air Force, let alone the Air National Guard,” said Gowen, a career aviator who was able to try the A-10C simulator while at the 104th Fighter Squadron building. “We want to continue to provide them with autonomy, mastery, and purpose with the A-10 mission they have developed over the past 40 years.”
The other major mission is the wing’s growing cyber presence, which is the only cyber group in the Air Force to have both offensive and defensive capabilities.
“We have seen the devastating effect cyber can have on the systems in Baltimore,” said Gowen. “We’ve seen just how important it is to be strong offensively and defensively in cyber. So it’s really eye opening to see the capabilities we’ve developed here.”
Gowen heard about the missions of the 175th Cyberspace Operations Group from their leadership and they discussed the future plans of the group.
“Our Airmen in the 175th COG are amazing, so it was great for Maj. Gen. Gowen to hear about their accomplishments,” said U.S. Air Force Col. Jori Robinson, 175th Wing vice commander. “Their dedication matched with their first-class military and civilian skill set, really allows them to succeed at whatever mission is put before them.”
He was also able to visit the new cyber and intel facility, which is scheduled to be officially opened early next year. As he moved through the base, he stopped and gathered feedback from multiple Airmen, who ranged from junior enlisted to general officers.
“I’m just really happy to have the opportunity to come up and spend some time with these great Airmen and see them first-hand,” says Gowen. “This was the first of many times I will come here and communicate directly with the Wing to receive input on what we can do better.”