The 86th Airlift Wing recognized Staff Sgt. Marquette Richardson, 786th Civil Engineer Squadron facility excellence leadership team noncommissioned officer in charge, as Airlifter of the Week, for his leadership and attention to detail, Nov. 24.
Richardson, a Brent, Alabama native, is responsible for managing a diverse group of 12-15 Airmen, who have completed the first term Airmen class and represent several career fields across the wing.
“Our mission is to beautify the base,” said Richardson. “If this program is not run correctly it looks bad on my squadron, and that’s one thing I won’t let happen.”
FLEX Airmen are responsible for ensuring base trash cans are emptied, marquees around base are pressure washed, and vegetation from walkways and pavements are removed to ensure roads around Ramstein are accessible.
“It can sometimes be difficult to unify such a diverse group of Airmen with different backgrounds and personalities,” Richardson said. “I find I’m most successful at motivating Airmen, when I get them to see the bigger picture. I’m also out there working with them everyday, getting dirty. I’m rarely at my desk.”
Richardson, originally a pavements and construction equipment specialist, arrived at Ramstein approximately three months ago, but he believes his tenure at FLEX will help him strengthen his leadership skills.
“This special duty is providing a foundation and the skills I need to run my own shop one day,” Richardson said. “This is a great opportunity to learn and lead people.”
Richardson was recently selected for another special duty, which will allow him to be embedded with the 435th Construction and Training Squadron starting in January 2021.
“My goal is to be an asset to 435th CTS,” Richardson said. “I want to improve myself and the unit. I’m looking forward to learning more about my job, taking on different roles and enhancing my leadership skills.”
Before Richardson leaves, he wants to revamp the FLEX program to make sure the person who comes after him has a more efficient means of successfully implementing the mission.
“Prior to graduating high school I wanted to join the military, and after a few years of college, I decided to follow that dream,” Richardson said. “It’s honestly been the best thing for my life. I’ve lived in Hawaii, Korea, and now Germany. My experiences have been awesome. I’m living the dream. I’m honored to be the Airlifter of the Week.”