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With people-focus, new commander looks to ensure mission strength
HANSCOM AIR FORCE BASE, Mass. – Col. Michael A. Vogel, 66th Air Base Group commander, salutes Lt. Gen. C. D. Moore II, Air Force Life Cycle Management Center commander, after accepting command of the 66 ABG during the formal change of command ceremony at the Hanscom Aero Club Hangar July 10. Vogel is now looking forward to working closely with his ABG team, AFLCMC-Hanscom's program executive officers and with local elected and civic leaders. (U.S. Air Force photo by Mark Herlihy)
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With people-focus, new commander looks to ensure mission strength

Posted 7/15/2014   Updated 7/15/2014 Email story   Print story


by Chuck Paone
66th Air Base Group Public Affairs

7/15/2014 - HANSCOM AIR FORCE BASE, Mass.  -- Col. Michael A. Vogel, who took over as 66th Air Base Group commander July 10, is anxious to begin working with the members of Hanscom and the surrounding communities who greeted him so warmly upon his arrival.

"I've been in the Air Force, both enlisted and as an officer and even as a dependent, most of my life, and I've never seen the level of support anywhere that I've seen here in just two days," he said during a July 11 interview.

The benefits of having solid community support, combined with the unique advantages of Boston-area intellectual and industrial resources, cannot be overstated, the colonel noted.

"I'm anxious to continue the relationships and partnerships with the local community and region," he said. "I see all the assets we have here, and I'm grateful to now be a small part of that."

He's also very much looking forward to working with and leading the people who make up the 66 ABG.

"I've already noted how many really good people we have and how much they care about what they do," he said.

Caring is something that means a lot to Vogel. It's the kind of thing that doesn't have to be stated; it just shows.

"No one cares how much you know until you show them how much you care," he said.

The son of a retired chief master sergeant, Vogel learned a simple but important lesson early on.

"If you have empathy and compassion for people and you genuinely care about their career, their personal lives and their families, they will work tenfold for the mission," he said.

As for his father, retired Chief Master Sgt. Art Vogel, the colonel cites him as the inspiration for his entire career.

"I would not be wearing Air Force blue today if it were not for him," he said.

That career journey Chief Vogel inspired his son to take has now seen many and varied stops. Having spent his early years as an enlisted surgical technician, the colonel later went on to be commissioned through the Reserve Officer Training Candidate program at the University of Texas. From there he has held myriad staff, functional and command positions.

Several of those jobs prepared him well for working in an organization like the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center, where units working on weapon systems are supported by air base wings and groups.

"I've been on both sides, working in the program office side and in mission support," Vogel said. "I know there's a bit of a challenge to getting everyone functioning as one team, but that's what we are. We support the program executive officers, but we're one team with one, big overarching strategic mission."

A self-described workaholic, the colonel plans to work hard on sustaining existing LCMC-Hanscom successes and expanding them wherever possible. In whatever free time he carves out, he and his wife, Misty, look forward to getting better acquainted with the local area, including winter skiing, a pursuit that might make managing a northern-tier base a bit more rewarding.

One thing that has already enhanced the colonel's transition has been his re-acquaintance with several people he'd crossed paths with earlier in his career.

"It really is a small Air Force," he said. "And the Air Force really is my family, so being able to see the great people you've met along the way over and over again is something that I definitely love."

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