First anniversary celebration of Space Systems Command

  • Published
  • By Kevin Gonzalez

The Space Systems Command proudly commemorated their one-year anniversary on Aug. 12.
The U.S. Space Force officially stood up the new Field Command on Aug. 13, 2021, and the anniversary observance highlighted the numerous achievements over the past year.
Lt. Gen. Michael A. Guetlein led the celebration with an SSC All Call for an in-person and virtual audience. “Today is a celebration,” Guetlein said. He thanked everyone in the command and reflected on all the command has accomplished throughout the year. Guetlein discussed why SSC was stood up - because of the threats we face. “The space fight will be won here,” he said.
SSC’s mission is delivering lethal and resilient space capabilities to defend the nation in the contested space domain. Guetlein detailed the great successes of the Field Command comprised of Guardians, Airmen, civilians and contractors. As a testament of the sheer volume of SSC achievements, he jokingly shared that his speech prep notebook was 35 pages long.
The tone of having fun was set earlier in the day, with the arrival on base of about 50 enthusiastic local students from Hilltop Christian Preschool and Day Camp. On the agenda for the young visitors was a fun introduction to science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).
The SSC STEM team, Ms. Nicole Palmer and Mr. Jonathan Stroud, led space-themed activities. Students built rockets with craft materials in the Gordon Conference Center, and then proceeded outdoors with their completed spacecraft. CMSgt Willie H. Frazier II, SSC Senior Enlisted Leader, met with the students on the soccer field for the morning launch activities.
Innovation was a key message of the day. Whether exhibited through creativity of the youth STEM program, or recounted by the command’s leaders during the SSC All Call.
“Fight tonight for innovation,” Guetlein said. He spoke of the ‘Fight Tonight’ construct related to war, describing that if something happened tonight - then we are going to war with what we have tonight.
The SSC Commander pressed for urgency around innovation and his desire for others to show initiative. Guetlein reiterated the ethos of his figurative charge: “make me tackle you from behind - I want you running as fast as you can,” he said.
Recounting his travels across SSC sites, he emphasized the need to empower teams to lead from the bottom up, to push authority down and enable agility. “I’ve seen the younger generation respond with enthusiasm, energy and passion,” Guetlein said.
Chief Frazier echoed the commander’s sentiment on supporting innovation, “We need to thaw the frozen middle,” he said. Encouraging a positive attitude when facing obstacles, he directed SSC to think about ways to get to Yes. Frazier shared a recollection when he previously encountered bureaucratic resistance, so he asked the question “Do you have the authority to tell me no?” He counseled the audience to control what you can control, and offered his assistance to those committed to being change agents.
The event continued with a ceremonial cake cutting then the celebration moved outdoors to the Schriever Courtyard for a large group photo and SSC launch party.
The culture of SSC has been set in the first year and we are committed to the course ahead. “We’re getting back to basics,” Guetlein emphasized. “We’re focusing on how we deliver our capabilities to the field and take care of our people.”