575th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron activated at Randolph
By Bill Orndorff, Ogden Air Logistics Complex
/ Published December 19, 2014
RANDOLPH AIR FORCE BASE, Texas -- A depot maintenance unit at Randolph AFB, Texas, was officially activated as an Ogden Air Logistics Complex squadron Dec. 11.
The new 575th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron works on T-38 Talon aircraft, and had been an "operating location" under the 571 AMXS since 2011.
Brig. Gen. Carl Buhler, Ogden ALC commander, who presided at the ceremony, praised the squadron's employees, noting that "over these past three years...your hard work and dedication have served to prove you have the capability, drive, and motivation to continue providing world-class support to our warfighter's training mission."
Buhler presented the unit guidon to Robert Lewin, a former U.S. Air Force Air Demonstration Squadron "Thunderbirds" crew chief, naming him as squadron director.
Highlighting the squadron's achievements, Buhler told how in FY 2012, the organization produced 110 consecutive aircraft on-time and workload capability was increased by 15 percent, yielding 100 percent due-date performance.
"In FY 2013, the unit continued their pursuit of 'Art of the Possible' by completing all production lines on-time and on-cost," the general said. "They sold the 300th consecutive on time-on budget jet while increasing the size of squadron".
"Through implementation of the tenets of the AFSC Way, the unit has continuously surpassed customer expectations." Since the beginning, the unit has produced more than 500 aircraft.
The unit is projected to produce 176 aircraft in FY 2015. Earlier this month, the 575th began the Pacer Classic III structural modification, a $240 million workload that is projected to extend the service life of 150 T-38s to 2029.
The Texas unit was established after a December 2009 Depot Source of Repair decision on the T-38 determined that depot maintenance would be done at Randolph through organic repair -- government workers instead of the previous contractor, Lear Sigler Inc. Orders to activate the unit as the 575th were received on Oct. 26, 2014.
"We started with five employees and picked up about 30 employees when the contract ended," said Joe Lopez, 575th deputy director. "We will soon go to 340 employees, both civil service and contractor."
Work began in two hangars and an office area on the southwest side of the base, and an additional hangar has since been acquired for parts storage.
The T-38 Talon is a twin-engine, high-altitude, supersonic jet trainer used in a variety of roles because of its design, economy of operations, ease of maintenance, high performance and exceptional safety record.
It is used primarily by Air Education and Training Command to prepare pilots for front-line fighter and bomber aircraft. Air Combat Command, Air Mobility Command and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration also use the T-38 in various roles. There are 546 in the active Air Force inventory.