The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

Local and State News

July 18, 2009

Air Force Association chapter: Education is the foundation of organization’s mission

Dan Ohnesorge, director of Enid Woodring Regional Airport, once followed in his father’s footsteps — sort of.

Ohnesorge joined the Air Force, while his father served in the U.S. Army Air Corps, the forerunner to the Air Force, during World War II.

“It wasn’t until I was pretty much a mid-range captain, that my dad stopped saying, when I came home, ‘How’s the Army?’” Ohne-sorge said.

That is one reason Ohnesorge is so involved in the Air Force Association and is, in fact, president of Enid’s AFA Chapter 214. Education is a key piece of the national non-profit organization’s mission, which also includes advocating aerospace power and a strong national defense, as well as supporting the Air Force and its people.

“What we do, as retirees or as members downtown, is educate ourselves via the literature or the things the Air Force Association puts out,” Ohnesorge said, “then we hope to further that to our neighbors, our co-workers, et cetra, so they understand what the Air Force does, so that at the end of the day the politicians learn and understand it, so the Air Force is supported as it should be.”

The local AFA chapter has more than 500 members, both corporate members, known as community partners, and individuals.

“Enid has the most number of community partners out of any chapter nationwide,” said Terry Cox, a member of Chapter 214 and president of the AFA’s Texas-Oklahoma region. “The community partners really provide a lot of support and financial help to the Air Force Association.”

“AFA instituted the gold award for community partners and we have won it 20 years in a row,” said Jay Jacobs, who re-cently ended his term as state AFA president. “We see the need of getting the community involved. Not just individual members, but getting businesses involved, letting them know what is going on out here at Vance and the importance of Vance.

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