2019 ANG top First Sergeant mentors, emphasizes leadership concepts

  • Published
  • By 1st. Lt. Tinashe Machona, 161st Air Refueling Wing Public Affairs

GOLDWATER AIR NATIONAL GUARD BASE, Ariz. – Excellence in all we do is more than a principle of the Arizona Air National Guard, it is a personal motto for Chief Master Sgt. Rachel Landegent, the 2019 Air National Guard First Sergeant of the Year, as she mentors fellow guardsman to become the best version of themselves.

Landegent, a 19-year veteran, was recently promoted to the rank of Chief Master Sgt. and now serves as the Mission Support Group superintendent at the 161st Air Refueling Wing. During June drill, as with every drill, Landegent’s priority is to make time to mentor junior enlisted Airman, inspiring them to never give up on themselves or their future endeavors. “I believe in mentorship because it is a tool that ensures our survival,” Landegent said. “Through mentorship and guidance, Airman explore their capabilities and work-ethic. Doing your best is the key to success, but if you fall you can learn from your mistakes and pick yourself back up.”

Landegent encourages Airman to always be mission-ready by helping them understand how their skills support our state and nation when called upon.

“I always urge Airman to make the best possible use of their time at drill,” Landegent said. “Being engaged in their war and state-emergency readiness is what makes us a formidable force in our military.”

Landegent credited the importance of sound counseling and the early development of her confidence by her leadership to help her become who she is today.

“I have been mentored by many Chiefs throughout my career in the National Guard but when I came to Arizona, Colonel David Ciesielski and Retired 161st Wing Command Chief Martha Garcia, recognized my potential,” Landegent said. “Their mentorship and faith in my abilities empowered me to progress in my personal life, and military career.”

Landegent serves in the Arizona Air National Guard with her husband, who is also the source of her inspiration and dedication to service before self, and has a simple recipe to success for her fellow Guardsmen.

“Take care of yourselves so that you can take care of business here.”