HANSCOM AIR FORCE BASE, Mass. – Two 66th Air Base Group Airmen will have their ideas adopted through the squadron innovation fund program following the results of the inaugural Warhawk Innovation Council held here last month.
The SIF program provides funding for Airmen-led innovations that increase readiness, reduce cost, return time back to Airmen or enhance lethality of the force.
“Each idea selected will help to revolutionize the warfighter’s edge at Hanscom and for the Air Force,” said Col. Katrina Stephens, installation commander. “I’m incredibly proud of the innovation these four Airmen displayed during this first-of-its-kind competition.”
Council members included Stephens, Chief Master Sgt. William Hebb, installation command chief, as well as representatives from Contracting, 66th Communications and Information Division, 66th Civil Engineering Division and the 66th Comptroller Squadron.
Judges selected two of the four concepts pitched: a Stress Vest Kit and EZ Child ID system.
“The Stress Vest Kit allows for improved force-on-force training, such as during active shooter exercises,” said Tech. Sgt. David Turner, 66th Security Forces Squadron NCO in charge of training, who pitched the idea.
The training vest provides immediate feedback to the user via a light shock or vibration.
“Through an improved training experience, Hanscom Defenders will have more confidence during high-stress situations,” Turner said. “Eventually, this training tool will be incorporated into base readiness training.”
The second funded pitch was presented by Staff Sgt. Jonah Cornwell, 66 SFS NCO in charge of Electronic Security Systems.
“The EZ Child ID System is a simple-to-use ID card printer able to produce an identification card for children, or any other individual,” he said.
The card contains information for Amber Alert and Silver Alert notifications.
“Making this available to the Hanscom community will give parents, guardians or caretakers a sense of comfort knowing the information they would need in an emergency is all in one place,” Cornwell said.
Airmen are now working with Finance and Contracting to purchase the vest kit and ID system.
“Being given the opportunity to present my idea to Col. Stephens and other judges is motivating,” said Cornwell. “The Warhawk Innovation Council is something that will make Hanscom a better, safer place to live and work.”
According to organizers, two of the other ideas pitched required additional information.
“We hope this event lays the groundwork for a culture of innovation throughout the 66th Air Base Group,” said Hebb.
Similar events will be held monthly.