CWUAir Force NewsAir Force News Air Force ROTC to hold solemn Veterans Day vigil, 08 Nov 2018 10:49:02<p>For the 29th consecutive year, CWU’s award-winning Air Force Reserve Officer Training Corps (AFROTC) senior class will commemorate Veterans Day with a tribute to America’s prisoners of war (POW) and others missing in action (MIA) during a 24-hour Veterans Day vigil.</p><p>It begins at midnight on Veterans Day with a brief ceremony that will include a performance of “Taps,” the distinctive bugle refrain often heard at military memorial events.<br><br>During this year’s vigil, the detachment’s 14 senior cadets will live in spartan conditions in a tent outside the AFROTC’s facilities in Lind Hall, on the Ellensburg campus. The event provides member of the Cascade Cowboys with an opportunity to “honor POW and MIA personnel—their service, courage, and sacrifice—and remind, especially their families, that they are not forgotten,” said Cadet First Lieutenant Lauren Letarte, a senior from Tucson, Arizona, who is organizing the vigil as the detachment’s Plans and Programs Officer.<br><br>During rotating shifts throughout the vigil, participating cadets will stand guard over a memorial to their comrades. Other cadets will staff an information table, with memorabilia of significance to POW/MIA families, and provide other information.<br><br>“When I started here as a freshman, I went to the vigil, saw the memorial, and realized that this is a big event,” Letarte recalled. “I saw the pride that the senior class had in it and I’ve looked forward to attending the vigil over the past few years. Now, participating and being a part of it is very special.”<br><br>CWU and all Kittitas County community members are welcome to view the displays during the vigil, visit with cadets, or simply honk their car and truck horn as they pass to indicate their support.<br><br>The <a href="" target="_blank">U.S. Department of Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency</a> lists more than 82,000 members of the U.S. armed forces as still unaccounted for from past conflicts, back to World War II.</p><p><strong>Media contact:</strong> Robert Lowery, director of Radio Services and Integrated Communications, CWU Public Affairs, 509-963-1487,</p><p><strong>Note:</strong> This year marks the 100th anniversary of what is generally recognized as the end of World War I, with an armistice—a formal agreement to end the fighting—which took effect at 11:00 a.m. on the 11th day of the 11th month in 1918.<br><br>The United States began officially observing Armistice Day, which honors the service of all U.S. military veterans, in 1938. In 1954, the annual public holiday was renamed Veterans Day, which takes place this Sunday, November 11.</p><p>&nbsp;</p></br></br></br></br></br></br></br></br></br></br></br></br>POWs/MIAs remembered during CWU Air Force ROTC vigil, 09 Nov 2017 17:18:54<p><img alt="" src="/airforce/sites/" style="width: 400px; margin: 3px; float: right; height: 240px;">More than 82,000 members of America’s military are unaccounted for from past conflicts, dating back to World War II.&nbsp; That is the figure listed by the United States Defense Department’s Prisoner of War Missing Personnel Office.</p><p>Central Washington University’s award-winning Air Force ROTC (Reserve Officer Training Corps) detachment will honor prisoners of war (POW) and others missing in action (MIA) during its 24-hour Veterans Day vigil. It takes place beginning Friday, November 10, at midnight and continues through midnight on Veterans Day.</p><p>During the vigil, the detachment’s 12 senior cadets will live in spartan conditions in a tent near McConnell Hall, on the Ellensburg campus. The event, being held for the 28th consecutive year, provides member of the Cascade Cowboys with, “an ability to be part of something bigger than just this detachment, and bigger than just the Air Force as a whole,” said detachment Plans and Programs Officer Michael Reid, a junior from Portland, Oregon.</p><p>“It’s our ability to give back and provide awareness of prisoners of war and missing in action personnel,” added Reid, who is organizing the vigil.</p><p>Throughout it, participating cadets will stand at attention, during rotating 20-minute silent shifts. They will stand guard over a memorial set up to honor those who are “not forgotten.”</p><p>“We’re not doing this for ourselves,” Reid stated. “We doing this to bring awareness and support for the POW/MIA mission.”&nbsp;</p><p>Other cadets, not “on duty,” will staff the table, featuring memorabilia of significance to POW/MIA families, and provide additional information. CWU and all Kittitas County community members are encouraged to view the displays during the vigil, visit with cadets, or honk their vehicle horns as they drive by to indicate support for the participants.</p><p><strong>Media contact:</strong> Robert Lowery, CWU Public Affairs, 509-963-1487,</p>New Commander Lands to Pilot CWU’s Aerospace Studies Program, 04 Aug 2017 09:47:09<p><img alt="" src="/airforce/sites/" style="width: 242px; height: 300px; margin: 3px; float: right;">United States Air Force Lieutenant Colonel Mark Meier has landed in Ellensburg to lead the CWU Air Force Reserve Officer Training Corps (AFROTC), Detachment 895.</p><p>In his new post, Meier a fighter pilot and pilot trainer, assumes responsibility for the recruiting, education, training, selection, and commissioning of officer candidates through the award-winning CWU program.</p><p>“I love the mountains and being close to the coast—it’s an environment I was looking for,” Meier explained as to some the reasons he sought the assignment. “This also provided me an opportunity to be a commander that I would not have had if I had stayed in the cockpit.”</p><p>In addition, he will serve as a professor within and chair of the <a href="" target="_blank">Department of Aerospace Studies </a>within the <a href="" target="_blank">College of Education and Professional Studies</a> with university status as a full professor.</p><p>“The biggest thing I’m looking forward to is working with new recruits; enthusiastic students who are not yet in the military and motivating them toward a career,” Meier added. “I want to help guide and inform them, and serve as a mentor, to help them make decisions that are both good for them and the United States Air Force as well.”</p><p>He will also lead the 40 recruits and returning cadet-wing members into the Air Force ROTC’s new facilities in the remodeled Lind Hall, on the CWU campus.</p><p>“This [building] brings the cadets closer to campus, so it’s more convenient to attend our classes and to-and-from their other university classes,” Meier noted. “That’s a big advantage, and will make it much easier for them.”</p><p>For both the returning students and those joining the program this year, they are studying at a time of increased need for personnel, in a variety of aviation roles, and to fill a void for Air Force pilots.</p><p>“It’s a career that I thoroughly enjoyed,” Meier acknowledged. “Our graduates get great hands on training in their assigned careers and a guaranteed job after graduation. And the Air Force ROTC offers scholarship opportunities for qualifying new and returning students that can help with college expenses.”</p><p>Meier was commissioned in 1996 as a graduate of the U.S. Air Force Academy. For the past six years, he has been the Assistant Director of Operations and a pilot instructor at Laughlin Air Force Base (AFB), in Texas. He has held positions in weapons and tactics, and scheduling for fighter squadrons at Elmendorf AFB, in Alaska; as a training officer and flight commander in reconnaissance at Nevada’s Creech AFB; and fighter pilot, pilot instructor, and evaluator at Langley AFB, Virginia; along with for the North Dakota Air National Guard, in Fargo.</p><p>During his time of service, Meier has received numerous honors, including an Air Force Meritorious Service Medal, Aerial Achievement Medal, Air Force Commendation Medal, and Air Force Achievement Medal. He attained the rank of lieutenant colonel in 2013.</p><p>Since being founded in 1951, the CWU AFROTC “Cascade Cowboys” detachment has established a track record of outstanding success, including receiving the AFROTC Northwest best detachment “Region Right of Line” unit award twice, and earning top Pacific Northwest honors in the AFROTC Standard Bearer Competition, which evaluated knowledge and skills of unit cadets.</p><p>It is one of 145 units located on colleges and universities across the country, which develop leaders in preparation to be commissioned as second lieutenants in the U.S. Air Force.</p><p><strong>Media contact:</strong> Robert Lowery, director of Radio Services and Integrated Communications, 509-963-1487,</p><p><strong>Photo:</strong> USAF Lieutenant Colonel Mark Meier</p><p>Friday, August 4, 2017</p>CWU ROTC Programs to Host 29th Annual Presidential Day Retreat (PDR) & Awards Presentation, 21 Apr 2017 09:25:50<p>Central Washington University's Army and Air Force ROTC Programs are hosting the 29th Annual Presidential Day Retreat (PDR) and Awards Presentation on Friday, May 12th at 1:00 p.m., CWU Tomlinson Stadium/Football Field.&nbsp; This joint ROTC event consists of a full military-style parade, guest speaker, awards presentation and informal reception following event.&nbsp; Representatives from local, state, national societies/organizations will present over 89+ ROTC Awards and Scholarships highlighting cadets and their accomplishments.&nbsp; Official Reviewing Party includes:&nbsp; Dr. James Gaudino; Dr. Paul Ballard, Dean of the College of Education and Professional Studies; Lieutenant Colonel Jonathan Ackiss, USA, Department Chair and Professor of Military Science (Army ROTC - CWU Wildcat Battalion); and, Lieutenant Colonel Richard Warr, USAF, Commander, Department Chair and Professor of Aerospace Studies (Air Force ROTC Detachment 895 - Cascade Cowboys).&nbsp; Air Force and Army ROTC Program highly encourage everyone to come out and show their support!&nbsp; Admission is free and open to public.&nbsp; For more details--contact Kendra Sterkel, Program Coordinator at (509) 963-2314.</p><p><a href="/airforce/sites/">/airforce/sites/</a></p>CWU Air Force ROTC cadets to host annual POW/MIA 24-hour senior vigil, 09 Nov 2016 15:26:52<p>This year will mark the 27th consecutive Veterans Day that the Central Washington University Air Force ROTC (Reserve Officer Training Corps) senior class will honor the country’s prisoners of war (POW) and others missing in action (MIA.</p><p>The 24-hour vigil, which commemorates those who are ‘Gone, but not Forgotten,’ begins Thursday, November 10, at midnight and continues through midnight on Veterans Day. During the vigil, cadets will live in meager conditions in a tent near McConnell Hall.<br>&nbsp;<br>“The annual vigil is a time for cadets to show their support for not only POWs and MIAs but for all veterans,” said Maj. Michael Phipps, CWU Air Force ROTC director of operations. “The POW/MIA flag states ‘you are not forgotten’ and this vigil stands as a reminder for everyone to take a minute to think about those who have served or are still serving in the armed forces.”<br>&nbsp;<br>This year’s vigil will conclude with a candlelight ceremony Friday at 11:45 p.m., which will feature members of the CWU music department performing Taps. CWU and all Kittitas County community members are encouraged to view the POW/MIA displays throughout the vigil and visit with participating cadets.<br>&nbsp;<br>Phipps noted that both CWU’s Air Force and Army ROTC cadre members will be represented and participate in the Ellensburg Veterans Day Parade.<br>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;<br><strong>Media contact:&nbsp;</strong>Robert Lowery, director of Radio Services and Integrated Communications, 509-963-1487,&nbsp;</p></br></br></br></br></br></br></br></br>CWU ROTC Battalions to Honor Founding of ROTC on Friday, 14 Apr 2016 10:31:38<p><img alt="" src="/airforce/sites/" style="width: 250px; height: 281px; border-width: 3px; border-style: solid; margin: 3px; float: right;">In recognition of the 100th anniversary of ROTC, Central Washington University’s award-winning Army and Air Force ROTC units are sponsoring a 100-mile run at Tomlinson Stadium on Friday, April 15.</p><p>“This is a way that we, as cadets, can show respect to the history of the Army ROTC and the military in general,” said CWU senior Joey Bauer, from Newcastle, Washington, who is an Army ROTC cadet helping coordinate the run.</p><p>More than 100 CWU Army and Air Force cadets are expected to participate. Members of the Junior ROTC from Yakima’s West Valley High School, and several area National Guard recruiters will take part as well.</p><p>In addition, CWU President James L. Gaudino, who is a United States Air Force veteran, is among the university administrators who will be on hand.</p><p>The event begins at 8:00 a.m. and is expected to take about four hours. Entrants will start their mile-long runs at two-minute intervals.</p><p>“Local community and student veterans are more than welcome to join in,” Bauer added. “They can run as individuals, buddy pairs or as part of a group.”</p><p>Those wanting to participate are asked to visit the sign-in table near the concessions stands at track.</p><p>Army ROTC is the American military’s largest officer-producing organization. It has commissioned more than 500,000 second lieutenants since its inception. CWU’s Army ROTC unit was established 35 years ago. CWU’s Air Force battalion has been on campus for 65 years.</p><p>The United States Army Reserve Officers' Training Corps (ROTC) program was initiated with President Woodrow Wilson’s signing of the National Defense Act of 1916.</p><p>Media contact: Robert Lowery, director of Radio Services and Integrated Communications, 509-963-1487,</p><p>April 14, 2016</p>CWU alumnus flies wounded veterans, 28 Dec 2015 07:44:03<p><img alt="" src="/airforce/sites/" style="width: 498px; height: 280px;"></p><p>Central Washington University [education and aerospace] alum and retired U.S. Air Force Colonel Richard “Dick” Iversen is helping post-9/11 wounded veterans travel easier by piloting free private flights with his longtime friend Jeff Hendricks.</p><p>Many of the wounded soldiers Iversen, 72, and Hendricks, fly are missing limbs, which makes travel through traditional airlines difficult. Through the work of Jeff-Air (named after Hendricks) and the Veterans Airlift Command, they are able to give wounded veterans a personal flight that accommodates their disabilities. There is no security to go through, and no one to tell them to rush or that they’re in the wrong seat.</p><p>Read more of this story in the <a href="">Daily Record</a>.</p>CWU Air Force ROTC Flies High, Earns New Regional Honor, 19 Oct 2015 16:40:00<p><img alt="" src="/airforce/sites/" style="width: 245px; height: 250px; border-width: 3px; border-style: solid; margin: 3px; float: right;">Central Washington University’s Detachment 895 is the top, medium-sized Air Force Reserve Officer Training Corps (AFROTC) in the Northwest Region.</p><p>The detachment was recently honored with the 2014-15 “Right of Line” award, which is given to the top detachment in each of the four AFROTC regions across the county.&nbsp;</p><p>The award, selected by the regional ROTC commander, is based on production, cadet activities, university and public relations, and recruitment and retention efforts. It is a reflection of the student-cadets and cadre’s professors, and the all-around excellence of the university.<br>&nbsp;<br>“This honor puts us in the top 10 percent of detachments nationwide,” says Lt. Col. Richard Warr, the CWU detachment commander. “Everybody worked very hard last year and put in a very good effort. We definitely earned it and I am very pleased and happy to see this recognition.”<br>&nbsp;<br>Warr says the decision to apply for the award came following a national inspection of the CWU unit late in 2014, at which time Central’s program was found to meet—and exceed—all national ROTC standards. &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;<br>&nbsp;<br>“We had a great recruiting class last year,” Warr points out, as among the detachments 2014-15 noteworthy achievements. “We were also able to send a lot of cadets to field training this summer, where they performed well, and we had others cadets selected for pilot training.”<br>&nbsp;<br>That included June graduate, 2nd. Lt. <a href="" target="_blank">Slava Ulanovskiy</a>, from Monroe, who was tabbed as one of just 51 candidates, from 143 air force detachments nationwide, for the prestigious Euro-NATO Joint Jet Pilot Training Program. Through it, he will become one of the world’s elite military pilots.<br>&nbsp;<br>In addition, the local chapter of the Arnold Air Society, a national community-service organization comprised of CWU Air Force ROTC cadets, hosted the Area XI conference, which was attended of more than 150 people from the five-state area.<br>&nbsp;<br>“The national staff had a lot of good things to say about our cadets,” Warr adds. “They were elected to be the area staff for this year for the good things they did.”<br>&nbsp;<br>The AFROTC also helped initiate a new competition involving CWU, along with the detachments at the University of Washington and Washington State University, to showcase the talents of the cadets from the three institutions.&nbsp;<br>&nbsp;<br>As students within CWU’s<a href="" target="_blank"> College of Education and Professional Studies</a>, AFROTC cadets earn minors in aerospace studies as a part of their military coursework. Those completing all phases of the program are commissioned United States Air Force second lieutenants.<br>&nbsp;<br>“I feel that we are producing some outstanding officers and I’m proud of every one of them,” Warr notes. “We’re training a lot more that are going to do great as well.”<br>&nbsp;<br>Of the approximately 85 cadets now enrolled in the rigorous CWU academic program, 45 percent made the university dean’s list during the 2014-15 academic year.<br>&nbsp;<br>Detachment 895 now will be judged against the other three regional winners for the national “Right of Line” award. It will be announced later this month at the national ROTC Commanders Conference at Maxwell Air Force Base in Montgomery, Ala. Warr will be among those attending the conference.<br>&nbsp;<br>“To say anything more than we have a 25 percent chance is just pure speculation on our part,” Warr admits, pertaining to winning the national award. “But we have a shot.”<br>&nbsp;<br>Right of Line is military parlance for the top performing squadron which, during parade formation, is always placed at the front right position. AFROTC is the largest and oldest source of commissioned officers for the U.S. Air Force. CWU’s detachment was initiated in 1951.<br>&nbsp;<br><strong>Media contact:&nbsp;</strong>Robert Lowery, director of Radio Services and Integrated Communications, 509-963-1487,&nbsp;;</p><p>October 19, 2015</p></br></br></br></br></br></br></br></br></br></br></br></br></br></br></br></br></br></br></br></br></br></br></br></br></br></br></br></br>Future Air Force Leaders from CWU Learn of Fairchild's Mission, 23 Apr 2015 15:30:44<p>One week ago, 39 Central Washington University Air Force ROTC cadets took part in a base visitation to Fairchild Air Force Base in Spokane. The CWU contingent was led by Lt. Col. Richard L. Warr, aerospace studies professor and department chair and commander of Detachment 895, known as the Cascade Cowboys, and Capt. Amber Johnson, assistant CWU professor and operations flight commander.</p><p><br>Read this <a href="">article</a> about the visit.</p><p><img alt="" src="/airforce/sites/" style="width: 500px; height: 322px;"></p></br>2015 Air Force ROTC Dining-Out & Commissioning Ceremony, 22 Apr 2015 09:08:48<p>On Saturday/13 June 2015, Central Washington University's Air Force ROTC Detachment 895 "Cascade Cowboys" will host the 2015 Air Force ROTC Dining-Out &amp; Commissioning Ceremony at 5:00 p.m., CWU Student Union Ballroom.</p><p>This event consists of a formal military program with a special guest speaker, catered served dinner, slide show and commissioning ceremony.</p><p>We are scheduled to commission seventeen (17) graduating seniors/commissionees.&nbsp; These individuals will take the Military Oath of Office and be sworn in as Second Lieutenants in the United States Air Force.</p><p>Dress:&nbsp; Formal/Evening Wear (Military--Mess or Service Dress and Civilian--Formal or Business Attire).</p><p>*NOTE:&nbsp; Ticket reservations are required; deadline is 29 May 2015.</p><p>For more details--contact Kendra Sterkel, Program Coordinator at (509) 963-2314.</p>