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Meet Team Dover's new enlisted leader

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Zachary Cacicia
  • 436th Airlift Wing Public Affairs
Wearing two stars in your chevron is a pretty big deal. Only the top one percent of enlisted Airmen rise to the rank of chief master sergeant, but out of that top one percent, roughly only ten percent are selected to serve as a command chief.

When Chief Master Sgt. Stanley Cadell, 436th Airlift Wing command chief, enlisted, he knew he wanted to make a career out of the Air Force, but he never imagined that he would one day be sitting in a wing headquarters building as its command chief.

Cadell has had his fair share of assignments in many diverse units throughout his 22 years of service in the U.S. Air Force, but serving as a command chief is new to him.

"When I came into the Air Force, I had a supervisor that told me to set goals for myself," said Cadell. "He told me to set both short and long term goals."

Cadell started his career as an aerospace ground equipment mechanic at Royal Air Force Upper Heyford, England. From there he moved to assignments at Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany, Ellsworth Air Force Base, S.D. and Aviano Air Base, Italy. While at Aviano AB, he was promoted to the rank of master sergeant and decided to become a first sergeant.

"I had a very good mentor, who happened to be a first sergeant, talk to me about first sergeant duty," said Cadell. "So I started doing first sergeant duty and I did it for nearly 10 years of my career."

After attending the First Sergeant Academy in 2005, Cadell would go on to work as a first sergeant for several different squadrons and groups at Offutt Air Force Base, Neb., between 2005 and 2011. During his time at Offutt AFB, Cadell was deployed from September 2006 to January 2007, to Ali Al Salem Air Base, Southwest Asia, working as the 386th Expeditionary Aircraft Maintenance Squadron first sergeant, and again from November 2008 to January 2010, to Forward Operating Base Mahmudiyah/Camp Stryker, Iraq, working as the 732nd Expeditionary Security Forces Squadron, Detachment 2 first sergeant.

"It's a very rewarding job to help Airmen and their families," said Cadell. "I enjoyed helping them succeed by teaching them and training them from where they were at, and trying to get them to go to that 'next level.'"

After his time at Offutt AFB, Cadell continued his first sergeant duties at Headquarters 9th Air Force, U.S. Air Force Central, at Shaw Air Force Base, S.C. from July 2011 to October 2012. His last tour as a first sergeant was at Scott Air Force Base, Ill., as the 8F000 functional manager first sergeant at Headquarters Air Mobility Command.

"As a first sergeant, I received the opportunity to work within many different types of squadrons, groups, and also at the Numbered Air Force and Major Command levels," said Cadell. "I was able to see and learn from different commanders, Airmen, and career specialties."

Cadell said that he has a lot to learn being the new command chief, but has already learnt so much during his short time on the job. His time working as a first sergeant has done a lot to prepare him for this new challenge.

"The first sergeant duty really prepared me for the job I'm currently doing," said Cadell. "It's helped mold me and make me a better Airman."

As the 436th Airlift Wing command chief, Cadell's responsibilities are to serve as the principle advisor to Col. Rick Moore, 436th AW commander, on matters of welfare, readiness, morale and the effective employment of the wing's 3,100 enlisted members.

Cadell began his tour as the 436th Airlift Wing command chief in March 2014, replacing Chief Master Sgt. James Smith, currently the 15th Wing command chief at Hickam Field, Hawaii.

But how exactly was Cadell selected to become the Eagle Wing's command chief?

The command chief selection process goes through several different steps starting with a senior rater, typically a wing commander, evaluating all the chief master sergeants they have under their command. From there, the selected chief's packages are sent up to a command chief screening board comprised of five MAJCOM command chiefs and two general officers. They then make up a list of 150 chiefs who they deem worthy of becoming a command chief, and it is from this list that wing commanders can choose who they want to work for them, roughly 80 positions per year.

Since it was Col. Moore who selected Cadell to work as his command chief, what does Cadell have to say about him?

"Col. Moore is a great boss; he is always very much about taking care of the Airmen," said Cadell. "He asks Airmen all the time, "What can I do for you?" He truly means that, I quickly learned that when he says that, he's just not saying it because he wants to, he's saying it because he means it."

Only on the job for a few weeks, Cadell has already made it known that he adores the Eagle Wing's Airmen, for the hard and dedicated work they accomplish each and every day.

"What I like here at Dover is easy to say, I like the Airmen," said Cadell. "I like being able to spend time with them, getting to know them, and looking for ways that I can help remove some of the obstacles that they run into each and every day."

He looks forward to serving as the Eagle Wing's command chief for the foreseeable future.

"I'm excited to be here, and I am looking forward to getting to know more of the people in the wing, said Cadell. "I want to get immersed with the different squadrons and units around the base and learn what they are doing and how I can help them."

Living in Delaware is a change for Cadell and his wife as well.

"We've been here for a few months now," said Cadell. "What my wife and I've seen so far, we really like."

Cadell has received several major awards and declarations to include: the Bronze Star Medal, the Meritorious Service Medal with four oak leaf clusters, the Air Force Commendation Medal, the Air Force Achievement Medal with two oak leaf clusters, and the Army Achievement Medal.

"I am happy to serve, whether that's as a command chief or in some other capacity within the Air Force, said Cadell. "I enjoy serving in our Air Force, whatever that role is in the future, I am willing."