Local High School Principal Attends National Security Forum From SBD 3’s Nomination

  • Published
  • By Kimberly J. Locke
  • Space Base Delta 3 Public Affairs

When Lt. Col. Brian Vance, Space Base Delta 3 deputy commander on Los Angeles Air Force Base, nominated Dr. Steve Wallis, principal of Da Vinci Science and co-founder of Da Vinci Schools, to participate in the National Security Forum (NSF), it was a natural pairing.

The forum is hosted by the Air University’s Air War College and sponsored by the Secretary of the Air Force.

A primary goal of the forum is to build and strengthen relationships between the military and community and with Wallis’ school campus directly across the street from the base the choice was right on target. His selection was not only ideal due to the proximity of the school to the base but because of Wallis’ leadership role at the school and within the community. 

“Dr. Wallis is an entrepreneurial-minded, STEM-focused leader in our community,” says Vance. “The opportunity to broaden his understanding of national security and help meet our need for STEM talent to shape our country’s future defense made him my first and easiest choice to nominate for NSF.”

Wallis had high praise for the recent three-day forum, which features presentations by some of the nation’s and world’s most senior military officers and highly experienced government civilians. He recommends the forum to anyone offered the opportunity. “Make room on your schedule, you won’t regret it,” he says. 

“It was a humbling experience to hear how our armed forces and allies are protecting freedom around the globe. We have such good, smart, and capable people ensuring our safety and freedom,” he adds. 

The forum offers an environment for open engagements on the diplomatic, economic, informational, cultural, and military instruments of national power and how each benefits a more stable, prosperous world order. Each nominee is then paired with an Air War College student who serves as their escort throughout the forum featuring briefings, panels, seminar discussions, and social events. NSF guests must pay their own expenses. 

The deeper understanding and appreciation for the military, its many contributions to democracy, the importance of the relationship between the military and civilians, as well as opportunities within the services are all aspects Wallis intends to share with his students and the community. “This experience has me thinking of ways I can reach out to our students, and in particular, those who have an interest in the military or who are in the Reserve Officer Training Corps to see what more we can do to connect them with the base and surrounding aerospace communities,” he adds.

“I know Col. Vance from various community events involving our kids,” says Wallis. “I was quite honored and excited to be nominated. Listening to our military leaders talk about the programs they are supporting and how those programs impact this nation and other nations was thought provoking to say the least. I was humbled when they asked for my perspective on certain topics,” explains Wallis. 

Wallis is credentialed in physics, biology and chemistry and has a National Board for Professional Teaching Standards Certification. He earned a bachelor of science in psychobiology from UCLA, a master’s in education from UCLA, both a master’s in business administration and a doctorate in education from Southern New Hampshire University, and a National Board Certification in chemistry. 

He was inspired to teach high school through his volunteer work with Young Life, a Christian ministry for middle, high school, and college students across the U.S. and around the world.