Rockin’ in a rebuild wonderland

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Tiffany Del Oso
  • 325th Fighter Wing Public Affairs

Tyndall Air Force Base, the “Installation of the Future”, is currently under construction as one of the Department of Defense’s largest rebuild projects. A project largely fielded by none other than the 325th Civil Engineer Squadron, which recently welcomed a new commander.

Lt. Col. Brandon Rocker is no stranger to Tyndall’s massive rebuild efforts. Rocker spent two years with the Air Force Civil Engineer Center Tyndall Project Management Office working in natural disaster recovery before he was selected as the new commander of the 325th CES.

“I was excited when I found out I was going to be the [325th] Civil Engineer Squadron commander here at Tyndall,” said Rocker. “All in all, it’ll be four years here at one installation, which will be the longest I’ve stayed at any installation in my career.”

The 325th CES, and other civil engineer squadrons across the Air Force, are known to be very diverse. The squadron is home to firefighters, the explosive ordnance disposal flight, the engineering flight, emergency management flight, even a natural resources flight among many others. The squadron is composed of military, civil service and contracted personnel all working together to sustain Tyndall’s mission.

“[The squadron] is kind of a catch all for a lot of career fields that don’t fit neatly within other squadrons,” explained Rocker. “So, knowing that…I’m now in charge of all that, [there] is a lot of information to balance the mission as well as taking care of my Airmen, [which] is my biggest priority.”

As Tyndall continues to recover, the mission has not and will not stop. The 325th CES leadership’s intent is to refocus on mission readiness, training and normal operations despite the ongoing construction.

“I really appreciate Lt. Col. Rocker’s commitment to creating an atmosphere of trust, honesty and respect, and that he remains focused on what needs to get done,” said Senior Master Sgt. Lindsay Rickert, 325th CES senior enlisted leader. “Because sooner or later the rebuild will be done. We have to remember to continue to develop and mentor our Airmen, so they are trained and prepared for what lies ahead.”

In fact, Rocker believes the best part about having command of a squadron is that he has the chance to leave a lasting impact on Airmen.

“I see my job as an opportunity,” said Rocker. “I know if I take care of my Airmen and their families, they will take care of the mission.”