Conference gives 12th Air Force (Air Forces Southern) section chiefs opportunity to share information Published Aug. 25, 2009 By Tech. Sgt. Eric Petosky 12th Air Force (Air Forces Southern) Public Affairs DAVIS-MONTHAN AIR FORCE BASE, Ariz. -- Air Force section chiefs from across Central and South America converged here for the 12th Air Force (Air Forces Southern) Section Chief Conference Aug 10-14. The annual conference provided a unique opportunity for the AFSOUTH staff and the country desk officers to interact with the AFSEC chiefs they are supporting in their respective countries, according to Maj. Kenny Sierra, conference action officer. It was also a means to gain a deeper understanding of the issues and activities of respective partner nation air forces. Some of the topics discussed were: 12th AF mission and operations, Regional Aircraft Modernization Program, Medical and Humanitarian actions, air show support and Global Hawk coordination. In addition, every country team had the opportunity to brief about their host countries. The AFSEC Chiefs Conference was initiated in the 1980s as a need by the Air Component Commander to communicate directly with the AFSEC Chiefs since, given their Joint Command duties, they are practically secluded from internal USAF issues, policies and day-to-day activities. Now, the chiefs have the opportunity to meet twice a year -- once in a joint environment sponsored by U.S. Southern Command, and once in an Air Force-only environment sponsored by AFSOUTH. "The AFSEC conference was a total success," Major Sierra said. "It was a great forum for networking and idea sharing. In addition, the conference gave all the Air Force Section Chiefs an opportunity to address specific issues, some might consider 'difficult,' directly to the AFSOUTH commander."