New superintendent discusses vision for Academy

Lt. Gen. Jay Silveria

Lt. Gen. Jay Silveria, superintendent of the U.S. Air Force Academy, discusses his goals and priorities in front of an audience of Total Force Airmen at the Academy, Aug. 17. 2017. Silveria assumed command of the Academy Aug. 11, 2017. (U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Julius Delos Reyes.)

Lt. Gen. Jay Silveria All Call August 2017

Lt. Gen. Jay Silveria, superintendent of the U.S. Air Force Academy, walks among the crowd at Arnold Hall Theater Aug. 17, 2017, during his "all call" for the Academy's Total Force Airmen. (U.S. Air Force photo/Mike Kaplan)


The top officer at the Air Force Academy shared his goals and priorities with staff and faculty at a vision-based Aug. 17 “all call” in Arnold Hall.


Lt. Gen. Jay Silveria said the first two of his three goals is increasing the Academy’s culture of innovation and fostering a culture of continual assessment and feedback.


“We have to be hard on ourselves,” he said, referring to what he said is the need for clear and honest evaluations of Academy processes.


Silveria said his third goal is growing the Academy’s culture of respect and dignity.


“If you want to find a red line with me, it will be in the area of respect and dignity,” he said.


Silveria began his presentation with a video showing the team effort needed to complete the Air Force’s mission. The video featured the Academy’s commissioning experience and showcased the leadership and multiple Airmen it takes to deliver a bomb on a hostile target.


He said the Academy’s mission of developing leaders of character cannot be successfully completed without unity of effort from every Airman, civilian and cadet.


“It takes a 1,000 people to land on target,” Silveria said. “It takes 1,000 people to develop a cadet. That’s my message to you.”


Silveria, a 1985 Academy graduate, took command of the school Aug. 11. He said the priorities he’s set for the Academy directly relate to the priorities introduced earlier this month by Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. David Goldfein: “restore readiness, cost-effectively modernize [the Air Force], drive innovation, develop exceptional leaders, and strengthen our alliances.”


“We will be grounded on those priorities and on our core values,” Silveria said.


David LaRivee, director of the Academy’s Center for Character and Leadership Development, introduced the event, saying it was designed to encourage Academy staff to consider how their role as faculty or staff relates to cadets.


“Today is going to be a call to action,” he said. “It’s a time to reflect on what caused you to join the Academy and what brought you here.”


The “all call” featured mission briefings from Brig. Gen. Andrew Armacost, dean of the faculty; Col. Jacqueline Breeden, commander of the Air Force Academy Preparatory School; Col. Shawn Campbell, commander of the 10th Air Base Wing; Brig. Gen. Kristin Goodwin, commandant of cadets; Col. Dale Hetke, commander of the 306th Flying Training Group; and Jim Knowlton, athletics director.


Silveria said he’ll devote time to meeting the Academy’s staff and that he’s indebted to his alma mater.


“I know first-hand what this place does for Air Force officers and for the Air Force,” he said. “I know what this place does for you.”


Silveria said he’s thankful for the Total Force Airmen who work on a daily basis to fulfill the Academy’s mission of developing leaders of character.  


“What you do is so critical and I’ve known what you do for decades,” he said.