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AFA President visits Eielson during Arctic Lightning Airshow

Two men stand near an F-35A Lightning II aircraft.

U.S. Air Force Col. David Berkland, 354th Fighter Wing commander, talks about the F-35A Lightning II fifth-generation fighter aircraft to retired U.S. Air Force Lt. Gen. Bruce “Orville” Wright, Air Force Association president, during the Arctic Lightning Airshow at Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska, July 31, 2021. The AFA’s mission is to promote dominant U.S. Air and Space Forces as the foundation of a strong National Defense; to honor and support our Airmen, Guardians, and their Families; and to remember and respect our enduring Heritage. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Beaux Hebert)

Two men stand near an F-35A Lightning II aircraft.

U.S. Air Force Col. David Berkland, 354th Fighter Wing commander, and retired U.S. Air Force Lt. Gen. Bruce “Orville” Wright, Air Force Association president, pose for a photo next to an F-35A Lightning II during the Arctic Lightning Airshow at Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska, July 31, 2021. U.S. Air Force Gen. David A. Krumm, 11th Air Force commander, invited Wright to the event as a way to connect him with the Airmen he represents. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Beaux Hebert)

EIELSON AIR FORCE BASE, Alaska --

Retired U.S. Air Force Lt. Gen. Bruce “Orville” Wright, Air Force Association president, attended the Arctic Lightning Airshow at Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska, July 31, 2021.

U.S. Air Force Gen. David A. Krumm, 11th Air Force commander, invited Wright to the event as a way to connect him with the Airmen he represents.

“It’s fantastic to be with the Airmen and the North Pole and Fairbanks community here,” Wright said. “Words don’t begin to describe the incredible partnership here, it’s almost like one big family dedicated to defending this nation.”

As one of the AFA’s top executives, Wright directs the association's professional staff. He is responsible for the management and operations of AFA and its 97,000 members, and he serves as the publisher of Air Force Magazine, the official journal of the Air Force Association.

The AFA’s mission is to promote dominant U.S. Air and Space Forces as the foundation of a strong National Defense; to honor and support our Airmen, Guardians, and their Families; and to remember and respect our enduring Heritage.

“We have the opportunity to come here and support Airmen, Guardians and their families to develop a better understanding to be more credible advocates and educate the public. We will tell every American voter, every citizen their safety and opportunities are so well defended and cared for by the 354th Fighter Wing here at Eielson.”

To accomplish their mission, the AFA acts as a voice, lobbying congress to support all the needs of Airmen and Guardians worldwide.

“We directly support Eielson with our very active AFA chapter that has been here for many years,” Wright said. “The leadership from this chapter is in constant contact with their teammates in Arlington, Virginia, to work together for a higher calling of defending our nation by taking care of our Airmen and Guardians.”

Looking toward the future, the AFA will continue to support Airmen and Guardians around the world and have even started looking into the housing shortage that has been affecting troops in the Fairbanks North Star Borough.

“We constantly advocate for a defense budget that adequately supports warfighting wings,” Wright said. “A specific project we are working on is getting enough housing to support the influx of Airmen and Guardians that came here for the F-35A [Lightning II] beddown. Eielson will be here for a while, the 354th Fighter Wing has a brand new combat mission and it’s going to be around for many years.”