CMSgt (retired) Bill McNew
Aerospace Science Instructor
Aerospace Science Instructor
Senior Aerospace Science Instructor
The Eagle River High School Air Force Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps (AFJROTC) was established on 01 July 2006, and is designated as AK-20061. The Corps is presently under the supervision of Lieutenant Colonel (Ret) David Ennis, Senior Aerospace Science Instructor, and Chief Master Sergeant (Ret) William A. McNew, Aerospace Science Instructor. Lt Col Ennis retired from active duty Jul 2006 and CMSgt McNew retired Oct 2005.
The Eagle River AFJROTC program continues to build in experience and character and the growth we experienced over our first four years has stabilized at around 120 cadets. Our unit is designated a group with two squadrons and three functional flights in each squadron. The leaders of the group have done a tremendous job here at ERHS. We lead the Cadet Leadership Course planning and execution effort for ERHS and cadets from other participating schools. These cadets learn mental toughness and how to lead, in addition to having a great time out in the wilds of Alaska. During the school year, our Color Guard/Drill Teams continue to excel and bring home trophies to include a State JROTC Drill Championship in 2016. Our group hosts the first Anchorage area drill competition and the JROTC bowling tournament attended by up to 10 school JROTC programs. Our cadets routinely accomplish over 2500 hours of community service year after year; we visit both the Elmendorf and Richardson sides of Joint Base Elmendorf Richardson (JBER); we attend physical fitness competitions, winter survival training; and we raise funds to purchase drill team equipment, enjoy pizza parties, and put on cadet “lock-in’s” where cadets get to know each other and bond as a unit.
Our Group has earned the “AFJROTC Distinguished Unit” award from headquarters AFJROTC in every year of our existence and has earned an “exceeds standards” rating during every headquarters inspection we have had. We have no doubt that we will continue to earn this praise in future years. Our unit receives outstanding support from parents, teachers, and administrators here at Eagle River High School, and from the Eagle River and JBER communities. We could not have come as far as we have without this support and we look forward to an ever-growing relationship.
The mission of AFJROTC is to “develop citizens of character dedicated to serving their nation and community.” Ideally, each cadet will have the opportunity to serve in a leadership position over the course of their tenure. The cadets of AK-20061 have developed the esprit-de-corps, personal pride, and traditions that will become legacy. Each cadet has contributed in some way to the success of AK-20061 and should be proud of what they have accomplished. They have set the standard for all those who follow, and that standard is exceptionally high.
Click to get more information about the Eagle River AFJROTC program.