About

FACT SHEET

The Air Force Association (AFA) is a non-profit, independent, professional military and aerospace education association promoting public understanding of aerospace power and the pivotal role it plays in the security of the nation. AFA publishes Air Force Magazine, conducts national symposia and disseminates information through outreach programs. It sponsors professional development seminars and recognizes excellence in the education and aerospace fields through national awards programs. AFA presents scholarships and grants to Air Force active duty, Air National Guard and Air Force Reserve members and their dependents; and awards educator grants to promote science and math education at the elementary and secondary school level.

MISSION

The Air Force Association mission is to promote a dominant United States Air Force and a strong national defense, and to honor Airmen and our Air Force Heritage. To accomplish this, we:

EDUCATE
the public on the critical need for unmatched aerospace power and a technically superior workforce to ensure U.S. national security.

ADVOCATE for aerospace power and STEM education.

SUPPORT the total Air Force family, and promote aerospace education.


ORGANIZATION
   

AFA is led by volunteer leaders at the national, state and local levels. AFA's state organizations and more than 230 chapters hold elections and conduct programs to increase public understanding of key national security issues in their communities. Programs range from luncheon and dinner activities to symposia and legislative roundtables with Congressional leaders.

National officers and directors are elected by convention delegates attending the national convention each September. Delegates are chosen at the state and chapter levels to represent AFA's varied membership and vote on AFA policies. When finally adopted at the convention, AFA policy takes the form of an overall "Statement of Policy" and "Top Issues."

TAX STATUS  
 
The Air Force Association is an IRS Code 501(c)(3) organization. Chapter and State organizations subordinate to AFA are recognized under IRS Exemption Number (GEN) 5392. Contributions to AFA and subordinates are fully tax-deductible for federal income tax purposes (see IRS Letter, 24 September 2009).

LEADERSHIP   

AFA’s leadership team for 2012-2013: George K. Muellner, Chairman of the Board; Scott Van Cleef, Vice Chairman of the Board, Field Operations; Jerry E. White, Vice Chairman of the Board, Aerospace Education; Edward W. Garland, Secretary; and Leonard R. Vernamonti, Treasurer.

Further, AFA is divided into 3 geographic areas, comprised of 14 regions, each led by a Region President.

Central Geographic Area:
    Great Lakes Region (Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio) - Kent D. Owsley
    Midwest Region (Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska) - John D. Daly
    North Central Region (Minnesota, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Wisconsin) - Victor Seavers
    South Central Region (Alabama, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Tennessee) - Tom Gwaltney
    Texoma Region (Oklahoma, Texas) - Bob Slaughter

East Geographic Area:

    Central East Region (Maryland, Delaware, District of Columbia, Virginia, West Virginia) - Joseph L. Hardy
    Florida Region (Florida, Puerto Rico) - Michael Emig
    New England Region (Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Vermont) - Bob Wilkinson
    Northeast Region (New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania) - Eric Taylor
    Southeast Region (Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina) - John R. Allen, Jr.

West Geographic Area:
    Far West Region (California, Hawaii, Guam) - Richard Taubinger
    Northwest Region (Alaska, Idaho, Oregon, Washington) - Rick Sine
    Rocky Mountain Region (Colorado, Utah, Wyoming) - Gayle White
    Southwest Region (Arizona, Nevada, New Mexico) - John A. Toohey

Day-to-day business is carried out by a headquarters staff in Arlington, Virginia, under the leadership of AFA President Craig R. McKinley, a retired Air Force General.

HISTORY
   
AFA's heritage is rooted in the legacy of Billy Mitchell. Mitchell had seen the United States enter World War I as the eighth-ranked nation in airpower - exceeded by Bulgaria, Greece, and Japan as well as by the major powers. Despite the bitter lessons of the war in the air and the high priority other nations were giving to airpower, the U.S. Air Service in 1919 was reduced from 10,000 pilots to 149; 6,000 were discharged in nine days. Mitchell fought hard and long in support of the importance of airpower and the need for a strong national defense. His work was carried on by the men who believed and served with him.

One of these men was the commander of World War II Army Air Forces - General Henry H. "Hap" Arnold. In April 1945, General Arnold first mentioned the need for an independent civilian organization to argue the case for military preparedness and the importance of airpower. AFA was incorporated in the District of Columbia on February 4, 1946. The Association's first national president was General Jimmy Doolittle, a noted aviation pioneer and Medal of Honor recipient. A vice president at Shell Oil Co. at the time, Doolittle took a year off to set up AFA chapters across the country.

Since then, AFA has spanned the air age, the missile era, the conquest of space, the nuclear age and the post-Cold War period. Although Association policies have evolved to meet changing technological and human demands, AFA has been constant in working to support Air Force people and strengthen American aerospace power to help maintain national security and preserve world peace.