Keesler Airmen push for reign of the hill

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Stephan Coleman
  • 81st Training Wing Public Affairs
With five straight wins at the end of the Cost Conscious Culture game "King of the Hill," Keesler's idea on "C3 Multi-Functional Device Initiatives", which involved renegotiating print, copy, scan and fax lease agreements, beat out all other competing Air Education and Training Command bases Aug. 12.

Keesler's excellence in C3 initiatives and involvement has been contingent on Airmen leading the charge. Specifically, the Airmen-led C3 working group headed by Staff Sgt. Amber Bell, 81st Comptroller Squadron, made a big push all summer to get the word out.

"Our working group made visits to units throughout the base each week to show everyone how to log on and vote," said recently promoted Bell, Keesler's C3 project manager. "It wasn't just for King of the Hill, but to spread C3 knowledge as well."

The working group, one of the first to be led by junior Airmen, is comprised of personnel from various squadrons in order to spread cost discussion on a more peer to peer level, said Bell.

"People don't even realize the numbers that have been cut," said Senior Airman Ciara Bien, 81st Medical Support Squadron. "When we put the numbers to it, especially how much is spent on Keesler, people start to listen. My goal was to spread the word around the hospital to various contacts I had and get everyone participating, not just my own office."

"Once you showed people how quick it was to vote, they enjoyed it," said Airman 1st Class Daniel Blas, 81st Logistics Readiness Squadron. "Explaining the effects of budget cuts on our own squadron helped to get people involved."

The base's involvement got Keesler's idea from the loser's bracket to the winner's bracket with three wins in a row. Participation skyrocketed at the end of the competition, averaging nearly 1,000 base personnel voting per day and lead to a double win over Columbus Air Force Base, Miss., in the final idea matchup.

"The goal of the competition was to get people to know about C3," said Bell. "I think everyone on Keesler knows what C3 is now if they didn't before."

The 6-week-long tournament spread awareness for cost consciousness and facilitated a platform for ideas to be spread and recognized. Thanks to the heavy involvement on base, and the efforts of junior Airmen, Keesler claimed its spot as king of the hill.