Lt. Col. Rebecca Bissette became the new commander of the 225th Support Squadron during an assumption of command ceremony at the Western Air Defense Sector, Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash., Jan. 4, 2023.
After assuming command, Bissette addressed the members of the 225th SPTS about the challenges they face today. “I would like to take this opportunity to talk about two areas that I think are critical to our shared success. The level of risk we are willing to accept, and our readiness.”
According to Bissette, risk is “the gap between our goals end state and the concepts and resources needed.” She emphasized that she has authority and responsibility to effectively use and seek out available resources to accomplish the mission. “But, to effectively accept this risk each of you must be an agile and adaptive leader, allowing decentralized execution of mission-type orders to seize, retain, and exploit the initiative. To minimize risk, we must be ready.”
For Bissette, readiness isn’t just what is reported in the Defense Readiness Reporting System, or on a spreadsheet briefed weekly. Readiness is about the mind, body and craft.
She defines craft as the techniques, tactics and strategy, the training environment, that makes Airmen professionals. According to Bissette, “It’s your pursuit of getting smarter and better at your vocation…and it’s the key to our readiness as elite homeland defenders.”
For body, Bissette is not just concerned about Airmen’s ability to pass the Air Force physical fitness test, but wants Airmen to focus on their nutrition, rest and active recovery because overall physical health is “ the greatest and most advanced weapons system this nation has, YOU.”
Mind is defined by Bissette as your consciousness, connection, and composure. Where consciousness is a person’s ability to exercise mindfulness, set goals, provide constructive evaluation of themselves, and identify their self-worth.
To break it down, connection is with a person’s team, peers, and their family. While composure is “training yourself to perform under pressure in a rugged, demanding, and hostile environment,” commented Bissette.
Bissette is adamant that mind is a critical piece of the readiness triad, and she states that, “there is no stigma in my command for your mind readiness. I want you to be ready, unleash your talent, and provide sentry against anyone that would cause this country harm.”
Bissette graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 2003 as a Distinguished Graduate and Blue-Chip Award recipient. She commissioned as a second lieutenant through ROTC and went on to complete studies at the Naval Postgraduate School in Meteorology in 2004. She served in the active duty U. S. Air Force as a weather officer and later joined the Air National Guard. While serving in the Florida ANG, she was a squadron weather officer before cross training in 2009 to air battle management. She has mobilized in support of Operations Iraqi Freedom, Enduring Freedom, Noble Eagle and Inherent Resolve.
Beyond her Drill Status Guardsman duties as a WADS air battle manager, she has volunteered for numerous active duty for operational support orders (ADOS) at Scott AFB, Ill., over the last 12 years. Most notably were her last two sets of ADOS orders where she was the Chief, U.S. Africa Command, U.S. European Command, U.S. Special Operations Command Branch at U.S. Transportation Command (USTRANSCOM) and a Special Action Officer for the Air Mobility Command Commander’s Action Group.