Robins Air Force Base Officials and 21st Century Partnership leaders gather around the new brand recognition for middle Georgia.

Kristin Moriarty/Staff Writer

Sat, Jan 12, 2019

On Thursday morning the 21st Century Partnership announced at the Museum of Aviation to local elected officials and business leaders, that middle Georgia region is one of five communities across the nation named to the 2019 Class of Great American Defense Communities, by the Association of Defense Communities (ADC) in conjunction with USAA, the program’s official sponsor. The award is given to military communities and regions that help improve the quality of life for service members and military families. 

21st Century Partnership’s President/CEO, Chrissy Miner, welcomed everyone and expressed her appreciation to partners and the community.

“The saying in Middle Georgia, EDIMGIAFAD, Every Day in Middle Georgia is Armed Forces Appreciation Day, is more than just a saying as demonstrated daily by the partnerships the community builds to support Robins AFB and their mission,” Miner said. “The community strives to help improve the quality of life of service members and their families and this national recognition is a credit to the work the community and installation does working with, caring for, and supporting our military community.”

Congratulatory videos were sent in from Senator David Perdue and Congressman Austin Scott.

“I’m so proud of Middle Georgia for being named a 2019 Great American Defense Community,” Senator Perdue said. “This special recognition is a testament to the successes that the people of Robins Air Force Base and this community have had over the last few years. For example, Middle Georgia has been able to successfully: eliminate the encroachment threat to Robins, support the Veterans Education Center, and build partnerships between the base and colleges and universities. These efforts are indicative of the community’s commitment to fulfilling the needs of not just the base, but the entire Air Force. All of this would not be possible without the leadership of General Kubinec, Colonel Drew, Chrissy Miner, and the 21st Century Partnership. To the people of Middle Georgia, thank you for all you do to support the men and women of Robins Air Force Base. I truly could not be more proud of my hometown.”

“Georgia’s Eighth District plays a pivotal role in our nation’s national security and defense, and I am very proud to see this announcement naming Middle Georgia a member of the 2019 Class of Great American Defense Communities,” Rep. Scott said. “This is the second year in a row that a community in Georgia’s Eighth District has received this recognition, further highlighting the great impact Middle and South Georgia have on our nation’s security and on the lives of our service members, veterans, and military families. I join all Georgians in wishing Middle Georgia congratulations on this honor.”

The 21st Century Partnership also invited five different community partners, who helped make an impact in achieving this recognition. The leaders talked about how middle Georgia worked to eliminate the encroachment threat to Robins using over $30 million in local, state and federal funds. Stated in a release by the Partnership, the community also came together to donate land and other support for the establishment of the Veterans Education Career Transition Resource (VECTR) Center. In addition, Robins AFB approved the first-ever Air Force partnership agreement with the VECTR center allowing transitioning active duty members to stay in vacant dorms at no cost to the service members. The colleges and universities also built partnerships that benefit both the base and community. Mercer University and Robins Air Force Base Educational Partnership Agreement enables Mercer and Robins personnel the opportunity to share not only knowledge and learning, but resources and facilities. Georgia Institute of Technology Research Institute (GTRI) provides Robins AFB immediate reaction to customer needs with extensive reach-back to GTRI’s Atlanta-based laboratories through their partnership. Finally, the Middle Georgia STEM Alliance was created to facilitate the collaboration of industry, military and academia with the mission of growing the supply of STEM-skilled workers to meet the demands required by a robust economy and the skilled workers needed at Robins AFB.

Ending the ceremony Brig. Gen. John Kubinec, commander of the Warner Robins Air Logistic Complex, expressed his appreciation on behalf of the men and women at Robins Air Force Base to the community as well as the 21st Century Partnership.

“We have known how great this community is for a long time,” Kubinec said. “There are thousands of actions taken everyday by the community in showing their support for the men and women of Robins Air Force Base. The slogan, “Every Day In Middle Georgia Is Armed Forces Appreciation Day”, is not just a slogan, it is backed with action, it’s how the community lives their lives. Thank you all.”