Judi Perkins - Airforce

Judi L Perkins, CMSgt (Retired) is currently the Director of Operations for the National Guard Association of Indiana, Inc. at Stout Field in Indianapolis, IN.  She spent 28 ½ years in the military before retiring. She enlisted in the United States Air Force on February 14, 1984 after 5 months in the Delayed Enlistment program.

After basic training at Lackland AFB, TX, she went to Keesler AFB, MS for 36 weeks for Air Traffic Control (ATC) Radar Maintenance technical school.  After completion of the school, Judi was sent back to San Antonio, TX to Kelly AFB in December for her first assignment with the 1827th Electronics Installation Squadron as an ATC Radar Maintenance Apprentice.   In November 1986, she was transferred to the 2137th Communications Squadron, Spangdahlem AB, Germany where she was eventually promoted to Sergeant.  Although assigned as an ATC Radar Maintenance Technician, Judi worked in Comm Job Control and Plans & Scheduling during most of her tour.  After three great years, she decided to retrain into the Office of Special Investigations (OSI) and was transferred to Beale AFB, CA. Shortly after her arrival, she was promoted to the rank of SSgt.  At the end of her enlistment in August of 1993, Judi enlisted in the Air Force Reserves and was assigned to Wright Patterson AFB, OH as a Sheet Metal Apprentice with the Combat Communications Support Squadron.  After ten months, a transfer to the Indiana Air National Guard was arranged with an assignment to the 122nd Fighter Wing Mission Support Squadron as a Personnel Apprentice.  During her 18 years in the Indiana ANG, she spent time as a Training Manager, First Sergeant as well as the base Human Resource Advisor (HRA).  In 2006, she was selected as the State HRA and was promoted to Chief Master Sergeant in February of 2007. On June 30, 2012, Judi retired from the Indiana ANG.  That summer, she was selected to be the Inactive Air Enlisted Member on the Board of Directors (BOD) for the National Guard Association of Indiana (NGAI). After 5 years serving on the BOD as the Treasurer, Judi finally accepted the position of Director of Operations with NGAI in June 2017.  

Judi knew she wanted to enlist in the Air Force from the age of 12 after visiting a recruiting booth at the Indiana State Fair.  Her father, Gene Morgan, had served 5 years in the Air Force during the Korean War but it was the recruiting booth that made the biggest impact.  The Air Force and Air National Guard had a significant impact on Judi’s life. She was able to see parts of the world she probably wouldn’t otherwise have been able to see, allowed her to meet people who would be life-long friends, but most of all, it brought clarity to the phrase “Proud to be an American”.  It is such an honor to serve our great country and so many individuals don’t realize the sacrifice those in the military make each and every day. But to most, including me, they would tell you they made no sacrifice, just did what they were called to do.

After speaking to several individuals who have gone on an Honor Flight, it is very easy to see how special the experience was for them.  Many of them light up like they haven’t in years. The welcome home they receive is bar none. People who don’t even know anyone on the flight come out just to be there to welcome them back and show their appreciation for the veteran’s service.  By participating in Dancing with the Heros, Judi hopes to shed light on what the Honor Flight is all about and how important it is to ensure every veteran has the opportunity to participate in the program.

 

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