Read past issues of the Leading Edge newsletter.
It’s exciting to have a hand in supporting so many Academy projects and programs that help develop cadets into exceptional leaders. We are highlighting just a handful of updates in this issue of Leading Edge.
• The Class of ’71, through our class giving program, marked a milestone with the groundbreaking for the Air Warrior Combat Memorial.
• Cadets in the Stamps Leadership Scholars program have amazing opportunities to enhance their academic studies and travel the world, broadening their horizons as future Air Force leaders.
• Former department heads of the Department of Political Science are spearheading an initiative to support a $5 million endowment for the Scowcroft Professorship.
• The Jannetta Lecture, endowed by Academy graduate David L. Jannetta ’75, continues to challenge cadets with insightful speakers.
As you read about these events and programs, I hope you are encouraged about your commitment to the Academy through the Endowment. You may even discover new areas of interest to support. We sincerely thank all those who continue to provide philanthropic support to our Academy!
Mike Gould ’76, Lt. Gen., USAF (Ret.)
President and CEO
Construction of the Air Warrior Combat Memorial begins
Air Force Academy Superintendent Lt. Gen. Jay Silveria ’85 joined graduates of the Class of 1971 and USAFA Endowment staff to mark the groundbreaking for the new Air Warrior Combat Memorial. The Class of ’71 has been shepherding the $1.2 million memorial project for nearly 10 years.
“Our thanks to the leadership of the Class of ’71,” Silveria said. “I can’t thank you guys enough.”
Adjacent to the B-52 bomber on display near the Academy’s north gate, the Air Warrior Combat Memorial will include a bronze statue of fighter pilot Brig. Gen. Robin Olds, a replica of an F-4 Phantom II fighter-bomber and two walls commemorating the history of air combat beginning in World War I.
“We wanted to honor all those Academy graduates who have participated in the Air Force mission of aerial combat in one way or another,” said Frank Morgan, president of the Class of 1971 and chair of the class gift committee.
In addition to being a celebrated triple ace with 17 kills, Olds was also the commandant of cadets at the Air Force Academy from 1967 to 1971.
“We elected General Olds as kind of the epitome of what we thought the air combat warrior ethos was,” Morgan said.
The construction phase of the memorial is expected to be completed in 2021, with an official dedication to coincide with the 50th reunion of the Class of ’71.
Read the full story and see more photos at usafa.org/news/AWCM.
Cadet leaders tackle real-world problems on a global scale
From researching geothermal energy applications in Iceland to studying cyberspace policies in China to assisting Secretary of the Air Force Heather Wilson ’82 at the Pentagon, cadets in the Stamps Leadership Scholars program are gaining valuable leadership and academic experience.
The Stamps Leadership Scholars program offers cadets with demonstrated leadership abilities and proven academic performance opportunities for summer research, internships and cultural immersion experiences around the world. The program was created by the Stamps Family Charitable Foundation and the Endowment.
Cadet 1st Class Kyle Haak traveled to Israel, Spain and Iceland to study water desalination, wastewater treatment and geothermal and nuclear energy applications. He ended his 2018 summer at the Oak Ridge National Lab in Tennessee working with the Nuclear Security and Isotope Technology group on data analysis. The experience reset his plans for the future.
“This program has changed my graduate school pursuits from physics to water security and international development and war studies,” Haak said.
The Endowment partners with the Stamps Family Charitable Foundation to provide half of the $22,000 grant allotted to each Stamps scholar. Academy supporters are contributing to the program through the Stamps Family Charitable Scholarship Fund.
Read more about the Stamps Leadership Scholars program in the December 2018 issue of Checkpoints magazine.
Academy graduate endows the Jannetta Lecture
Author Joseph Heller was a guest lecturer at the Air Force Academy in the 1970s when a young David Jannetta was studying international affairs.
The author “sat in our classroom and he spoke. He shared his outline for Catch 22; it was incredible,” Jannetta remembers. “For me, even then, I remember thinking the Academy must have a strong sense of itself to expose cadets to a thought process that may not necessarily be approved.”
More than 40 years later, the 1975 Academy graduate believes that cadets need even more exposure to a wide range of perspectives on issues. It’s one reason he chose to endow the Jannetta Lecture with a focus on the humanities.
“Things are so different today. The challenges for the cadets and for society as a whole are greater,” he said. “It’s really important for cadets to be exposed to a broad range of opinions. Things aren’t necessarily black and white any more. There’s a lot of ambiguity out there.”
The 12th annual Jannetta Lecture featuring playwright Suzan-Lori Parks was held in September 2018. Jannetta introduced Parks, in part, by describing how the cadet wing of today has changed from the all-male wing he was a part of during his time at the Academy. “Just as the Academy has adapted to changing times, cadets can learn new leadership approaches when they are exposed to new perspectives,” he said.
Read more about how Jannetta’s support was also instrumental in the success of the 2018 War, Literature and the Arts Conference at usafa.org/news/jannetta.
Elevating the Scowcroft Professorship
In a bid to enhance the academic excellence of the Department of Political Science, Academy graduates, former faculty and department alumni are renewing a campaign to fully sustain the Brent Scowcroft Professorship in National Security Studies with a $5 million endowment.
Retired Lt. Gen. Brent Scowcroft served as the head of the Department of Political Science in the early 1960s and coined the imperative: “Teach cadets not what to think, but how to think.”
His exceptional leadership skills and academic prowess guided him through 40 years of distinguished service that included stints as national security advisor to two presidents: Gerald Ford and, during Operation Desert Storm, George H. W. Bush.
“As a colleague, I’ve valued his sharp, analytical mind, unshakable integrity and tireless work ethic,” Bush said. “As a close friend, I value his loyalty, sense of humor and great capacity for kindness.”
The Scowcroft Professorship will attract exceptional educators to the Academy who are experienced in national security and policy issues to serve on a rotating basis of three to four years.
Gifts and pledges for the Scowcroft Professorship are being received through the Endowment. Gifts can be given online at usafa.org/give/Scowcroft or call 719-472-0300.
Introducing Amy Kreidler - Director of Corporate & Foundation Relations
As the director of corporate and foundation relations, Amy Kreidler researches and builds relationships with private foundations and corporations to secure long-term financial support and active involvement with the Academy.
Before joining the Endowment team in 2017, Kreidler worked at the Kansas State University Foundation, raising funds to support students, faculty and facilities for the College of Engineering. During her tenure, Kansas State University exceeded its $1 billion campaign.
Kreidler also worked for Lockheed Martin in the Washington, D.C., area for 14 years in business development, supporting aviation, weapon systems and ship programs. Prior to working with Lockheed Martin, she worked at the National Archives and Records Administration in Kansas City, Missouri, and College Park, Maryland.
Kreidler holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in American history from Emporia State University.
Four new directors have been added to the Endowment board: Paul Rossetti '70, John Olive '67, Stephen MacLeod '91 and William Clohan '70.
The four Academy graduates bring a wealth of successful military and business experience to the team. Learn more about our new directors at usafa.org/news/board.
The Class of ’68 celebrated its 50th reunion in a big way by endowing the Cadet Cyber Competition Team with a gift of more than $600,000. The gift will provide continuous support to the team for travel, awards and other expenses not funded by the government.
“Cyber warfare will be a pillar of all future wars and is already a constant threat,” reads a statement on the Class of ’68 campaign page. “We of ‘68 have a timely and lasting endowment opportunity to make a real difference in the future readiness of the U.S. Air Force to fight those wars.”