Kelly Reese: 2018 PMF
I converted into the Air Force Strategy Division upon completion of my final rotation in their office. Previously, I had worked in the Air Force Protocol Office, Air Force Foreign Policy Advisor Office, and Joint Staff Operations Directorate which all proved immensely beneficial, but knew strategy was where I wanted to convert.
I joined the strategy development and implementation team right as the Department of the Air Force (DAF) Arctic Strategy was nearing release. This was the first ever DAF regional strategy and highlighted the importance of the Arctic geopolitically as strategic competition in the region increases. I was lucky to be involved in the senior leader preparation and roll-out activities for the strategy explaining its importance and relevance to DAF operations.
Over the last year, my focus has shifted to implementing the strategy across the Department. I helped develop an implementation plan with specific goals and clear timelines to move from strategy to action. I chair monthly working group meetings with counterparts across the Air, Space, and MAJCOM staffs to track progress on task implementation ensuring actions support the overall objectives identified in the strategy. I brief DAF and DoD senior leaders, Congressional members and staff, U.S. government organizations, and academic institutions on our implementation progress and successes.
Managing implementation of a Department-wide strategy is informative, challenging, and rewarding. I continually gain a deeper understanding of the organization and our various roles and missions in addition to the myriad outside organizations with whom we engage in our implementation efforts. I have encountered difficult challenges, but they have pushed me to become a better communicator, leader, and strategic thinker. Overcoming those challenges and seeing the progress made on strategy implementation has been immensely rewarding as I can see the impact my work makes on achieving national security objectives.
My time as a PMF prepared me with the experiences and tools necessary to succeed in my career. I continually use and grow the skills I gained during my Fellowship and am thankful for the foundation the PMF program provided for my career and professional development.