Week of 6/4/2020

Your Leadership Stands With You

This week, I write to you saddened and angered by the death of George Floyd and the events following. This incident is not the first senseless racist act of oppression to take place in the United States and we cannot turn a blind eye and accept it as normal. I feel deeply for those suffering pain from this tragedy and injustice and I want you to know that I stand with and support you.

We are a nation in pain, and we must come together to provide support to each other during this time. I also do not condone the rage in response to this tragedy. In talking with those around me at work and at home, my belief is the violence is a sign of other social ills in our society. There is much work to do to solve these complex social issues, and I am fully committed to take action.

Right now, you may not know what to say, but I call on you to listen and seek understanding. At Lockheed Martin, I believe that our core values should guide our behaviors in both our work and personal lives: Do What's Right, Respect Others and Perform With Excellence. I encourage you to use these values as a standard for how to act and treat others at work and in your everyday life. Be mindful, educate yourself, listen, check-in, be willing to have difficult yet respectful conversations and find ways to show your support.

Today, I gathered all F-35 leaders to update them on the status of the F-35 fleet, recent milestones and accomplishments, and the challenges ahead. During our meeting, I emphasized the pivotal role leaders play to create inclusive team environments. This reality, coupled with the COVID-19 crisis, reaffirms the importance of meaningful dialogue in regular staff meetings, one-on-one tag-ups, skip levels and more. I called on all my leaders to exhibit these behaviors and communicate transparently.

We all must work together to create a more inclusive community. Together we have and can continue to make a difference and I challenge you to lead by example. Our success is due largely in part to the diverse and inclusive participation by all as we bring our collective skills and values to the benefit of the F-35 Nation. Everyone is a part of our success.

Water Carrier: Omar Chavez

To deliver on our customer commitments, it is critical that every individual on the F-35 team fires on all cylinders. Today, I want to recognize a water carrier employee who exemplifies what it means to go All In.

Omar Chavez received the Certificate of Commendation from Marine Fighter Attack Squadron 314 Commanding Officer, Lt. Col. Cedar Hinton. Omar received this award for his dedication to the standup of the Miramar ALIS team. He played an integral role in the squadron’s successful achievement of Safe For Flight certification.

Omar supported the ALIS 3.5.2 upgrade, oversaw the seamless addition of new aircraft into the Squadron Operating Unit and accurately administered over 1,050 maintenance and operational hours.

Water Carriers embody what it means to be accountable to how we do our work, ensuring we meet our commitments and propel our organization toward future success. Without water you can’t live and without water carriers, the F-35 program will not Perform. Omar, thank you for your efforts and great work to the entire Miramar team.

Hill F-35s Deploy to the Middle East

This week, for the third time in 12 months, F-35s from Hill Air Force Base deployed to the Middle East. Aircraft and Airmen from the 421stFighter Squadron, the Reserve 466thFighter Squadron, their aircraft maintenance units and support personnel touched down at Al Dhafra Air Base, United Arab Emirates, to support operations in the region. The units replace another team from Hill conducting 24/7 F-35 operations in the region.

“The 421st Fighter Squadron completed their stand up in December, and now they’re our latest squadron heading into the fight,” 388th Fighter Wing Commander Col. Steven Behmer said. “This demonstrates the readiness of our Airmen, our weapons system, and the importance of both to the Air Force and our national defense mission. On top of that, add in prepping and training in this challenging coronavirus environment. As leaders, we couldn’t be prouder of our Airmen.”

I echo Col. Behmer’s words. It is no small feat and the men and women of Hill continue to Perform during these challenging times. This deployment comes only three weeks after aircraft and Airmen from Hill returned home after a six-month deployment. Great work to both Hill and our Lockheed Martin team on the ground supporting the mission.

I am proud to know the F-35 continues to safeguard our skies. F-35 Nation, your work enables our warfighters and I thank you for your efforts. Please take care or yourselves and I’ll see you next week.