Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Accessibility chief visits JBER for training

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Moises Vasquez
  • 673d Air Base Wing Public Affairs

Anthony Cruz Munoz, chief of the Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Accessibility program for the Pacific Air Forces, visited Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, to conduct briefings across the installation March 25 to 28.

Cruz Munoz said he gave the leaders of JBER the proper tools to communicate with their Airmen, with an aspiration to create an ideal environment where every individual in an organization can make the greatest contribution to the mission.

“We all live in a diverse world,” Cruz Munoz said. “America is very diverse, and so is our Air Force. We have a responsibility to make sure we use all of that diversity to create the very best output for our Airmen to be ready to fight if necessary.”

Niña Fleur Needham, DEIA program manager for the 673d Air Base Wing, said the importance of DEIA is in enhancing awareness, understanding, and commitment, and serving as a platform to educate, inform, and foster a more inclusive and supportive environment for all personnel.
“Keeping DEIA in the spotlight of today's Air Force is crucial because it not only reflects the Air Force's commitment to fostering a diverse and inclusive workplace, but also plays a vital role in strengthening organizational culture, improving morale, and promoting innovation,” said Needham. “Emphasizing DEIA helps ensure fair treatment, opportunities, and representation for all individuals within the Air Force.”

Cruz Munoz said leaders have to see the benefit of diversity and inclusion in the workplace.

This opportunity allows managers and supervisors to address any questions their Airmen may have, aiding leaders in better supporting and caring for them.

“If (leaders) focus on deliberately creating an environment where there is trust, that makes everything else easier,” he said. “It allows people to make better contributions, and they aren’t afraid to take risks,

“Even if Airmen make mistakes, they will know everything is alright because of that trust factor. So, we must do everything we can to establish an environment where everyone feels there's trust, then they can be the best versions of themselves.”

Though the DEIA program is in its early stages of its life, Cruz Munoz said it is important to encourage the leaders of installations across PACAF to create a more diverse and included environment to give Airmen the opportunity to excel in any endeavor they choose, thus enhancing mission readiness.