Col. Anthony Higdon, U.S. Air Forces in Europe and Air Forces Africa deputy director of logistics, engineering and force protection, was inducted into the Society of American Military Engineers Academy of Fellows during a virtual ceremony on Sept. 16.
The professional organization was established in 1920 following WWI to build leaders and lead collaboration among government and industry professionals. It aims to develop multi-disciplined solutions to national security infrastructure challenges.
“It is an honor to be recognized, along with 35 of my colleagues around the world, for the volunteer time I’ve spent in the SAME and contributions I’ve made to the Society throughout my career,” said Higdon. “However, most importantly it is fulfilling to recognize that the Academy of Fellows selection committee believes I still have more to offer as a mentor and role model for SAME’s membership.”
According to the SAME website, the Society unites public and private sector individuals and organizations from across the architecture, engineering, construction, environmental and facility management, cyber security, contracting and acquisition disciplines.
Higdon said he first joined the SAME as a young 2nd lieutenant when his first Air Force supervisor, Mike Shultz, brought him to a meeting at Dyess Air Force Base, Texas.
Over his career, Higdon volunteered his time as a post president at both Panama City, Florida and Kaiserslautern. Additionally, Higdon has served as the European regional vice president. Throughout it all, he credits the volunteer members he met along the way for enabling his service by making those positions possible.
The SAME Academy of Fellows recognizes those members who have rendered dedicated and outstanding service to the Society, military engineering, and the architecture, engineering and construction professions.
“I have enjoyed the opportunities to mentor members and help develop future leaders for SAME and I am grateful to Col. (ret) Shawn Moore for nominating me to the Academy of Fellows,” said Higdon.
Another mentor Higdon credits is his former boss at the Air Force Civil Engineer Center, Joe Sciabica.
“He made sure AFCEC was represented and making presentations at every SAME event possible,” recalled Higdon. “He really encouraged strong relationship building with our industry and joint engineer partners because it takes all of us to deliver the infrastructure solutions needed for national security.”
As a Fellow, Higdon will continue to mentor the next generation of members in the 100-year-old Society.
He has one last piece of wisdom to share with Airmen.
“I would like to encourage everyone, regardless of career specialty, to make connections within your field to develop your professional skillset and credentials to better achieve your mission,” Higdon said. “It is important for all of us to learn from those more experienced around us, and more importantly as we gain experience to develop and mentor our future leaders.”