A new year means new priorities for the Puerto Rico Air National Guard

  • Published
  • By Air Force Capt. Matt Murphy, 156th Airlift Wing
  • 156th Airlift Wing

156th Wing Commander Col. Raymond Figueroa recently announced his priorities for 2019 at Muniz Air National Guard Base during a regularly scheduled drill: deployment readiness, base infrastructure and recruiting.


“We live in the community. We are your neighbors, your friends, your family,” said Figueroa. “It is important for us to share information with everyone because the base and the Air National Guard is part of the fabric of this island.”


The acting Secretary of Defense Patrick M. Shanahan, affirmed his predecessor’s National Defense Strategy with emphasis on readiness and the wing is determined to live the National Guard motto of “Always ready, Always there.”


“Deployment readiness is a necessary part of our existence,” said Figueroa. “The PRANG Airmen are highly trained and skilled and we will continue our heritage of meeting mission needs for all contingency operations.”


Hundreds of PRANG members are veterans of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, a large contingency of its members fill roles at the Pentagon and higher headquarters and many individuals are regularly asked to fulfill assignments throughout areas of responsibility.


The PRANG is also rebuilding. Currently wing contracting and civil engineering professionals are managing 80 projects with funds of $176 million. The majority of that funding and projects feeds the local economy.


“It’s been over a year since Maria, but our patience and the hard work of so many of our Airmen is making an impact on base with self-help projects and innovation,” said Figueroa. “Members of our Military Personnel Section just renovated their offices by repurposing furniture from higher headquarters in San Juan. They removed old flooring, doors and wall divisions and painted saving the Wing thousands.”


In terms of recruiting and retention, the PRANG wants its fellow Boricuas to know that the door at the base is open and there are many opportunities to serve.


“If you’ve ever thought about joining the military, we want you in the Air National Guard,” said Figueroa. “We have many part-time and some full-time positions. Come and talk to one of our recruiters and join the PRANG family.”


For more information about joining the Puerto Rico Air National Guard visit: https://www.goang.com/locations/puerto-rico/muniz-air-national-guard-base.html