Pa. Air Guard guides in new 111th ATKW commander during monthly drill

  • Published
  • By Tech. Sgt. Andria Allmond
  • 111th Attack Wing
Col. William Griffin officially received authority as commander of the Pa. Air National Guard’s 111th Attack Wing during a change of command ceremony held Dec. 3, here.

Pa. National Guard Deputy Adjutant General – Air, Col. Michael Regan, formerly the 111th Mission Support Group commander, officiated the event before a standing-room-only audience of more than 300 service members, family and friends as well as approximately 2,000 online viewers.

“I’ve known Col. Bill Griffin for over 23 years; I’ve come to know him very well,” said Regan. “We’ve worked together on flightlines, literally, all over the world. And I can’t think of anyone else I’d want to do that alongside.”

With the 111th Attack Wing Honor Guard ushering in the event with full regalia, Regan published the order to convert command from Col. Howard Eissler to Griffin. Griffin then addressed his Airmen and their families for the first time as their commander. He began by listing the central attributes for his members: trust, loyalty, accountability and credit.

“The first point I want to make is trust,” he stated. “Know that you have my trust – trust to do things right, trust to come in and give an honest crack at it every day.

“Loyalty is [another point]. Let’s be loyal to ourselves, take care of ourselves,...Then we can take care of the person to our left and right, so we can take care of our squadron and the Wing. [Then there’s] accountability. We’ll try to be accountable for our actions and our inactions. The other side of that coin is credit. Let’s take credit for our actions, because there’s goodness in that.”

Griffin joined the unit here in 1990 after commissioning at the Academy of Military Science, then located in Knoxville, Tenn. He logged more than 3,500 hours in manned aircraft and recently qualified to fly remotely-piloted aircraft. Graduating from The United States Army War College, Carlisle, Pa., he also served as faculty there. Griffin served at squadron command levels and, most recently, was the Wing’s vice commander since 2013.

“[Griffin’s] experience is varied and has more than adequately prepared him to take on the awesome responsibility of wing commander,” said Regan.

The new commander finished by putting forth his vision for the future of the 111th ATKW.

“We’ve already started, but we’re really going to work on readiness and resilience. I look at readiness as working hard. My philosophy [on resilience] is we should give each other a high-five when a high-five is deserved, give a hug when someone needs a hug, give someone a kick in the butt when they need a kick in the butt. We do it all together, all working together, all following the right direction.”