Career Field Leadership

///Career Field Leadership
Career Field Leadership 2017-05-21T03:01:25+00:00

Career Field Leadership

In 1984, the BMET career field was officially incorporated into Medical Logistics at the Air Force level. This included creating the position of BMET Career Field Manager (CFM) to work at the evolving Air Force Medical Logistics Office in Fort Detrick, MD. The CFM had to be a person of great experience, highly respected and capable of laying the foundation for a career field in the midst of technological change. To date, six members have held the position, each bringing his own unique perspective and focus to the job:

NumberNameFromTo
1CMSgt Melton "Red" Newman1984December 1991
2CMSgt Alan ChristianJanuary 19921999
3CMSgt Gerald Benson1999August 2003
4CMSgt Rick KoleszarAugust 2003June 2008
5CMSgt Dennis BoneyJune 2008January 2011
6CMSgt Dave DuenasJanuary 2011April 2015
7CMSgt Alfonso EvansApril 2015Present

In 1984, CMSgt Melton “Red” Newman, one of the original Gunter AFB-trained BMETs, became the first BMET Career Field Manager (CFM). He laid the strategic groundwork for the entire career field, including creating the Medical Equipment Repair Center (MERC) concept. Prior to serving as CFM, he served as the BMET Course Supervisor at the Air Force School of Health Care Sciences.

In January 1992, CMSgt Alan Christian, a one-time dental technician who cross-trained early in his career, took charge. He focused on standardizing calibration testing and equipment across the career field. In addition, he laid the foundation for Air Force BMET participation in the combined DoD school. Prior to serving as CFM, he served in various positions, including as an instructor in blocks I, II and III of the basic course, as well as the 3-phase X-ray course.

In 1999, CMSgt Gerald Benson took over. He drove improvements in BMET readiness training and helped reshape the BMET landscape as 4A2 manning levels were lowered and Operation ENDURING FREEDOM began.

In August 2003, CMSgt Rick Koleszar assumed the mantle. He focused on contingency operations, preparing BMETs for wartime, including deployable Computed Tomography training, allowing BMETs to support Operations ENDURING FREEDOM and IRAQI FREEDOM. He also paved the way for local national BMET training in Afghanistan. Prior to serving as CFM, he served in various positions, including as an instructor in both the Basic and Advanced X-ray courses.

In June 2008, CMSgt Dennis Boney, a one-time electronic warfare systems specialist who cross-trained early in his career, took charge. He focused on reshaping the career field to continue to meet contingency needs at a time of force reductions across the entire Air Force. In addition, he drove a change in the MERC landscape, moving operations from Sheppard AFB to Lackland AFB. Finally, he oversaw the technical school transformation from Sheppard AFB to Fort Sam Houston. Prior to serving as CFM, he served in various positions including Group Superintendent.

In January 2011, CMSgt Dave Duenas, a one-time base supply technician, assumed leadership. He focused on contingency operations, as well as reshaping the MERC landscape worldwide and transforming the career field to meet the challenges of evolving biomedical technology. Prior to serving as CFM, he served in various positions including Group Superintendent.

In April 2015, CMSgt Alfonso Evans took the helm. He will no doubt focus on pushing the career field into the healthcare technology management arena through revising the BMET Career Field Education Training Plan (CFETP), to include reshaping basic and advanced course curricula, as well as help shepherd the total BMET field through changes to ANG BMET utilization.

Based on current 4A2 manning numbers, the career field has five CMSgt authorizations Air Force-wide:

LocationPositionName
Ft Detrick, MDCareer Field ManagerCMSgt Alfonso Evans
Ft Sam Houston, TXSquadron SuperintendentCMSgt Quyen Ngo1
Lackland AFB, TXMedical Logistics SuperintendentCMSgt Dan Hoffart
Keesler AFB, MSSquadron SuperintendentCMSgt Margaret Cooper2
Travis AFB, CAMedical Logistics SuperintendentCMSgt Justin Helin
Notes:

  1. Currently serving as the 382d Training Squadron Superintendent
  2. Currently serving as the 81st Aeromedical Squadron Superintendent

For every CMSgt promotion cycle, the Air Force promotes at least one eligible SMSgt in each career field (if the career field has an eligible candidate), regardless of the number of CMSgt authorizations open in the career field. In those cases where no CMSgt slot is open in a particular career field, any available CMSgts are placed in a pool to serve as either squadron or group superintendents. Currently, we have five 4A2 CMSgts serving outside the career field in superintendent positions:

LocationPositionName
Kadena AB, Japan18 MDG SuperintendentCMSgt Conrad O'Rourke
Misawa AB, Japan35 FW Command ChiefCMSgt Chuck Frizzell
Vandenberg AFB, CA30th MDG SuperintendentCMSgt Mike Heath
Buckley AFB, CO460th MDG SuperintendentCMSgt Mark Stagray
Shaw AFB, SC20th MDG SuperintendentCMSgt Michael Restivo

Based on current 4A2 manning numbers, the career field has 13 SMSgt authorizations Air Force-wide:

LocationPositionName
Andrews AFB, MDMERC Chief
Ft Sam Houston, TXAir Force Service LeadSMSgt Scott Gardner
JB Elmendorf-Richardson, AKMERC Chief
JB Langley-Eustis, VAMedical Logistics SuperintendentSMSgt Jesse Merriman
Keesler AFB, MSMERC ChiefSMSgt Anthony Cataldo
Lackland AFB, TXMERC Chief
Nellis AFB, NVChief, Clinical Engineering
Offutt AFB, NENCOIC Medical MaintenanceVacant
Ramstein AB, GermanyMERC ChiefSMSgt Joe Berberich
Scott AFB, ILMERC Chief
Travis AFB, TXMERC ChiefSMSgt Jeanne Tuttle
Wright-Patterson AFB, OHMERC ChiefVacant
Yokota AB, JapanMERC ChiefVacant
Notes:

  1. Headed to Joint Base San Antonio – Fort Sam Houston
  2. Headed to Keesler AFB, MS

For every SMSgt promotion cycle, the Air Force promotes at least one eligible MSgt in each career field (if the career field has an eligible candidate), regardless of the number of SMSgt authorizations open in the career field. In those cases where no SMSgt slot is open in a particular career field, any available SMSgts remain in their current duty positions (and may be utilized in other positions as determined by local leadership) until they (a) complete their respective minimum tours and (b) a SMSgt position opens up. Currently, we have one 4A2 SMSgt serving in a non-SMSgt slot. SMSgt Alan Weary currently serves as the 59th Medical Wing’s Career Assistance Advisor.

Every major command (MAJCOM) has an assigned functional manager (MFM) for every AFSC in the MAJCOM. From a 4A2 perspective, here are the current MFMs:

MAJCOMFunctional ManagerBase
Air Combat Command (ACC)CMSgt(s) Margaret CooperNellis AFB, NV
Air Education & Training Command (AETC)CMSgt Billy Santa AnnaLackland AFB, TX
AF Central Command (AFCENT)MSgt Justin CampbellFt Detrick, MD
AF Global Strike Command (AFGSC)MSgt Mark PersonBarksdale AFB, LA
AF Materiel Command (AFMC)CMSgt Dan HoffartKirtland AFB, NM
AF Reserve Command (AFRC)CMSgt Lucinda Hines1Robins AFB, GA
AF Space Command (AFSPC)
AF Special Operations Command (AFSOC)MSgt Justin CampbellFt Detrick, MD
Air Mobility Command (AMC)CMSgt Alfonso EvansTravis AFB, CA
Pacific Air Forces (PACAF)CMSgt(s) Quyen NgoJB Elmendorf-Richardson, AK
United States Air Forces in Europe (USAFE)SMSgt(s) Joe BerberichRamstein AB, Germany
NOTES:

1. 4A0 by trade, but serves as Functional Manager for all AF Reserve 4A’s

In addition, other specific areas of concern have equivalent Functional Managers:

OrganizationFunctional ManagerBase
Air Force District of Washington (AFDW)SMSgt Kevin AndertAndrews AFB, MD
Air National Guard (ANG)MSgt Piers Heris-SmithAndrews AFB, MD
United States Air Force Academy (USAFA)USAF Academy, CO

Throughout the history of the BMET career field, several individuals have made their mark. Here are but a few who made their mark and, in turn, grew the career field in one way or another. Note these are my personal opinion, based on personal research and correspondence with others in the career field, and should not be seen as an official endorsement by the field itself.

Merritte Weber Ireland, Major General, USA (May 31, 1867 – July 5, 1952). In 1919, as Army Surgeon General he identified the need for a dedicated medical maintenance depot, setting the wheels in motion for what would ultimately become the BMET career field.
Keith Rowe, CMSgt, USAF. The first Medical Equipment Repair Specialist instructor at Gunter AFB, Alabama. He helped devise curriculum and would go on to become the first CMSgt in the career field.
Axley Lambert, CMSgt, USAF (May 19, 1932 – March 19, 2007). A Medical Equipment Repair Specialist instructor at Gunter AFB. He would go on to run the Air Force’s largest BMET shop at Willford Hall Medical Center, Lackland AFB, Texas, as both a CMSgt and civilian, before retiring in 1997. In addition, he was instrumental in developing the first CBET certification. He himself would be the second person ever certified.
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Fred Daniels. A former Navy BMET, Fred went to work at David Grant Medical Center at Travis AFB, CA in 1975. He would take a lead role in opening the current facility in October 1988 and ran daily shop operations from 1997 to until his retirement in 2007. He pioneered the use of database analytics in Medical Maintenance to enhance workload efficiency.
Terry Bracewell, SSgt, USAF. Instructor at Sheppard AFB, Texas. He was the last person to earn a direct duty position as a BMET, without ever having to attend the BMET school. In addition, he went on to form the Biomedical Equipment Society of Texas (BEST), giving certified instructors a forum for professional development and avenue to maintain certification.

(Updated 2014-04-12)