Your Chamber’s Cybersecurity and Military Affairs Councils held a joint meeting on Wednesday, June 1 to discuss relevant cyber operations in San Antonio and highlight the relationship between the military and the San Antonio community. Hosted by Port San Antonio, the meeting featured a mission brief from 16th AF representative Lt Col Luis Palacios, Director of Commander’s Action Group and a Cyber Leader Discussion with Col Joshua Rockhill, Commander of 26 Cyber Operations Group out of JBSA – Lackland. The Chamber also welcomed Col Andrew Steffen, Commander of NSA – Texas, who was in attendance.
Rick Crider, Military Affairs Council Chair, introduced Lt Col Palacios who provided a mission brief on the scope of 16th AF services, mission & vision, and global presence. He highlighted the changing landscape regarding 21st century warfare and how offensive attacks are conducted, necessitating a need for a specialized technologically advanced branch within our military. Although most people relate the 16th AF to its cyber capabilities, Lt Col Palacios emphasized the expansiveness of the 16th working in other areas within the information environment including global weather predictions, warfighter communications, and globally integrated ISR. The three lines of effort the 16th focuses on are generating insight, competition, and preparing for escalation. With 128 worldwide locations and over 40,000 active duty, civilian, aligned guard, and reserve, the 16th accounts for 10% of the entire Air Force – ensuring success in securing globally integrated information warfare outcomes.
Following the mission brief, Larry Hurtado, Founder of Evanesco Inc. and Cybersecurity Council Chair, introduced Col Joshua Rockhill who engaged in a discussion surrounding military presence and the San Antonio ecosystem. Col Rockhill brought up a personal observation detailing how units in other locations around the U.S. leverage the strengths of the communities they’re located in to substantiate the bond between the military and the community. With San Antonio recognized as Military City, USA, it’s safe to say the collaboration between military branches and the San Antonio community is already in place, however there will always be room to strengthen the relationship by continuously leveraging San Antonio’s strengths.