2015 Finale

It’s hard to believe we are closing the chapter to this year. The 115th Fighter Wing Airmen had a chance to see a lot of the world this year, and through photos, stories, and blog posts – each and every one of you got to see the world with us. We completed training missions in Japan, England and Poland – all while maintaining our forces at home. Through your continued support, we were able to successfully complete our homeland and worldwide missions.

As 2015 closes, I’d like to personally thank you for reading this very blog. This year we decided to try something different, to write from personal perspective, and even when the weekly news and events were slow, and we needed to substitute material through historical avenues (Take me back in Truax Time) you were still there for us showing support on Facebook. Thank you for that!

This year gave our public affairs team a run for their money. We started several new projects and were able to sustain them with limited full-time personnel.

We began our TruaxLive blog. ‘52-weeks at Truax’ gave us (and me in particular) a chance to give you real-world perspective on life as an Airman, life as a member of the Air National Guard, and most importantly, life as an Airman in the 115th Fighter Wing right here in Madison, Wisconsin. This year, the blog also gave the commander an avenue to spread messages he felt were important to share with the public. Be prepared to see even more in 2016 in regards to TruaxLive.

Our broadcast Airmen were put to the test when they were given an opportunity to write, record and publish a monthly podcast. The audio production allowed drill status Airmen to hear the latest news and information necessary to make their unit training assemblies a success! They could tune in on their drive to drill, or during their regular daily activities – like brushing their teeth! The versatility of an audio production really gave Airmen information they needed in a format that was easy to listen to – all they needed was to spare 115 seconds of their day!

Our biggest innovation on the public affairs side of the base was the development and execution of the 115th Fighter Wing app. Through numerous meetings and feedback sessions, a team of Airmen and app developers were able to put together a one-stop shop for all your information needs. On the app you could find links to the Wing’s Facebook page, podcast, Truax Ticker, fitness standards, phone numbers, a calendar and numerous informative areas for the public. It not only provided current Airmen with useful information, but it also housed information for the public and our active affiliate Airmen who knew nothing about the base before coming here. Trust me, if you haven’t taken advantage of the endless information – you should…just visit your app store for the free download!

As the year comes to a close, we are reflecting on our great 2015 and looking forward to the advancements we will make in 2016. In order to make the best use of our time in public affairs, we want to hear from you! We want to know what worked and what didn’t work for you. What would you like to see continued or started in 2016?! Use your voice – speak up…we have some ideas (which I’ll briefly mention below) but we want to hear your ideas! How can we get you the information that is most useful to you?

Some ideas floating around our office include more historical posts (a chance to see what our predecessors were up to), blog posts written by our very own Airmen (an opportunity to hear someone elses voice – as I’m sure you heard enough of mine in 2015!), and monthly commander and DPH insights (a chance to hear what leadership feels is important to share.)

This year was exciting – as I conclude with a photo field trip through this past year – the 115th Fighter Wing’s public affairs team would like to thank you for joining us on our journey. We hope you tag along for the 2016 ride!

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About Tech. Sgt. Andrea F. Rhode

Tech. Sgt. Andrea F. Rhode is a photojournalist for the 115th Fighter Wing in Madison, Wisconsin.