Moody bridges cultural gaps during Diversity Day

  • Published
  • By Staff Sgt. Jordan Garner
  • 23rd Wing Public Affairs

The U.S. Air Force defines diversity as a composite of individual experiences and abilities consistent with the Air Force core values and mission.

In light of that definition, Team Moody hosted its fifth 23rd Wing Diversity Day event at the George W. Bush Air Park, June 13, 2022. The event aimed to celebrate diversity by educating Airmen on ten cultural observances recognized by the Department of Defense.

“Diversity Day is not meant to replace traditional observances,” said Col. Sean Baerman, 23rd Fighter Group commander. “It is an attempt to focus the Wing’s resources and personnel on all cultures that make up today’s Air Force.”

Airmen and families celebrated and recognized the various cultures of service members at Moody with education stations, cultural food and interactive performances.

“I hope today allows everyone the opportunity to learn a little more about all of the amazing people and cultures that make up today’s Air Force,” Baerman said. “Our differences are what make us unique and it’s important to move beyond merely what the eyes see and get to know what makes your fellow Airmen special.”

Retired Chief Master Sgt. Shon Barnwell, the event’s guest speaker, shared her perspective on looking beyond the surface and using cultural differences as strengths.

“Culture impacts every aspect of our lives and includes beliefs, values, assumptions and perceptions,” Barnwell said. “As we work to continually bridge cultural gaps, it’s important to realize the more we know about and appreciate one another, the more effective we can become at creating and enhancing inclusive work environments.”

Events like these provide an avenue to connect Airmen with contrasting cultural backgrounds. Each connection provides an opportunity to better understand the diverse Airmen the Air Force includes.

“As we celebrate diversity across the force with all of our monthly celebrations, we look at each of the pieces of the fabric in the Air Force that we bring together," said Col. Danielle Willis, 93rd Air Ground Operations Wing commander. “When we have events like this we can just see how rich our force is. So for everyone who came to educate us on each of our different backgrounds and heritage, just know that you are stepping into a proud tradition of bringing our cultures into the force.”