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STEP promotion
Lt. Gen. Mike Gould, Academy superintendent, and Chief Master Sgt. Todd Salzman, Academy command chief, surprise Master Sgt. Christopher Fisher with a STEP promotion Tuesday at Mitchell Hall. Fisher is the NCO in charge of drill and ceremonies for the Commandant of Cadets. (U.S. Air Force Photo/Mike Kaplan)
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Military trainer ‘STEPs’ up

Posted 1/20/2012   Updated 1/20/2012 Email story   Print story


by Staff Sgt. Heather Stanton
Public Affairs

1/20/2012 - U.S. AIR FORCE ACADEMY, Colo. -- An NCO with the Commandant of Cadets staff was surprised with a STEP promotion to master sergeant Tuesday.

The Stripes for Exceptional Performers program allows commanders to promote a limited number of Airmen each year, outside the Weighted Airmen Promotion System cycles. This year, USAFA was allotted only one such promotion.

Lt. Gen. Mike Gould, Academy superintendent, presented now-Master Sgt. Christopher Fisher, the NCO in charge of drill and ceremonies for the Commandant of Cadets, with his new stripes during an informal lunchtime ceremony in front of the entire Cadet Wing.
"Master Sgt. Fisher rose to the top and I am honored to have him as a senior NCO," the general said.

Fisher thought he was going to Mitchell Hall with his entire office for lunch and an accountability briefing for upcoming inspections, but when Gould brought up his name to the Cadet Wing for a second time, he knew he was not being briefed.

"(I am) shocked," Fisher said just after receiving his new rank. "Complete disbelief."
Submitting the STEP package was an easy decision for Fisher's supervisor, Master Sgt. Gina Pope, Cadet Wing standards and evaluations superintendent.

"He was a rock-solid NCO and professional who was performing like a seasoned senior NCO," Pope said. "Despite his dedication and hard work, he had yet to be promoted under WAPS, and I knew he was deserving of the next rank."

Fisher is a native of Rocky Mount, N.C., with nearly 18 years in the Air Force.

"It is difficult to stand out in such a crowd (of his peers), but I have been most impressed with his work ethic and the mentorship he provides to cadets on a daily basis. He is fair but firm and they respect him for it," Pope said. "I know he will be an awesome senior NCO. This will be an easy transition for him. I am excited to welcome him as a senior NCO and look forward to watching him succeed."

1/20/2012 6:11:14 PM ET
Congratulations bro Well deserved
TSgt Wash, Nellis
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