Over Not Through: New 225th ADS Commander Motivates Airmen

  • Published
  • By Kimberly D. Burke

Lt. Col. Antony Braun took command of the 225th Air Defense Squadron during a change of command ceremony at the Pierce County Readiness Center Oct. 6, 2021, on Camp Murray, Washington.

The ceremony was presided over by Col. Raed Gyekis, 225th Air Defense Group commander.

Braun replaced Col. Brian Bergren, who became the new Washington Air National Guard Headquarters director of staff for Brig. Gen. Gent Welsh, the Washington Air National Guard commander.

After assuming command, Braun addressed the members of the 225th ADS and talked about how “Team Bigfoot” is making daily innovative contributions to make the Western Air Defense Sector’s mission more effective. 

Braun expressed how Airmen of the 225th ADS are living and breathing Chief of Staff of the Air Force Gen. Charles Brown’s challenge to Accelerate Change

Brown’s most recent challenge to the Air Force described the need for the Air Force to embody the mantra of “over not through”. 

Braun explained to the audience, that “over not through” is the idea that even when “everything appears that the adversary is driving us to confront them head-on, we surprise them with innovation to go over not through.”

Braun highlighted how the squadron has used its "tools in new ways, taken degraded systems, legacy sensors, and imperfect situational awareness and aggregated it to deliver decision superiority on a daily basis.”

According to Braun, the 225th ADS has been innovating the mission system to have audible alerts, written flash bulletins for the entire enterprise to model, integrated airborne sensors better and faster, built a system contingency of the day training program, figured out how to effectively synchronize 300 plus syllabus events in four months, developed workarounds to degraded communication paths, planning to fly with KC-135 crews to advise, assist and radio relay NORAD Command & Control guidance which are making the Chief of the Air Force’s “over not through” a reality. 

Braun wrapped up his comments by explaining that “we can’t be promised that we will ever have perfect sensors, ideal conditions, god-like situational awareness, or enough time, resources, and decision space.”  Braun wants the members of the 225th ADS to be ready to bring order, be comfortable with fog and friction, have a cohesive team delivering air defense, ready to defend the homeland today better than yesterday, and ready to seize every opportunity to innovate and adapt.  He wants Airmen to mentor, take care of each other, be professional, and act with courage.  Thus enabling the Bigfoot team to go to the next level.

Braun graduated from the Franciscan University of Steubenville, Ohio, in 2002 and was commissioned through the Officer Training School at Maxwell Air Force Base, Ala.  Braun has served in a variety of operational flying billets in command and control aircraft and ground-based air defense.  He is a Master Air Battle Manager with more than 1,400 flying hours in the E-3B/C Sentry aircraft. He has served in numerous combat, contingency, counter-narcotics, and consequence management operations including Operations NOBLE EAGLE, ENDURING FREEDOM, and IRAQI FREEDOM. Braun is also a graduated strategic planner with experience serving in strategic air defense operations as well as civil support operations following numerous national emergencies.

He is also graduate of the United States Air Force Weapons School.  Prior to assuming his current position, Braun served as the 225th ADS director of operations.