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Author: Lois G. Russell
Release Date: Mar 14, 2017
The Commander of the nation’s Air Force Recruiting Service visited Alabama State University on Monday, March 13, 2017, to speak with students and meet with University and local leaders.
Major General Garrett “Gary” Harencak says he has one of the best jobs in the country: serving as the commander of all recruiting activities for the United States Air Force.
Harencak is the national Commander of the Air Force Recruiting Service, Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph, Texas. He and members of his staff visited ASU on Monday, March 13, as part of the University’s growing partnership with the Air Force.
“I’m proud to announce a new partnership with Alabama State University, the first one that we’ve established at a University,” said Harencak. “This partnership will serve as a model for similar relationships at universities across the country.”
The partnership involves collaborative efforts based on student recruitment for the University and the Air Force.
Harencak made the announcement during the culminating event of his daylong visit to ASU. The evening reception was attended by local, county and state elected officials, including Sen. Quinton Ross, Alabama Rep. John F. Knight Jr., Montgomery County Commission Chairman Elton Dean and county commissioner Isaiah Sankey; business leaders; University administrators; Board of Trustee Chairlady Alfreda Green; Trustees Brenda Brown Hunter and Tiffany McCord; ASU Foundation Board Members; Trenholm State Community College President Sam Munnerlyn; and members of the military community.
The general’s itinerary also included a Veterans Appreciation Luncheon where he spoke to ASU faculty, staff and students who are military veterans. He then gave an afternoon speech to a larger audience that included not only ASU students and cadets from Detachment O19, but also cadets from Montgomery’s Jefferson Davis and Sidney Lanier High Schools. (To view photos from the day's event, visit link.)
“What I want the students to take from this event is that there is a tremendous opportunity for them to leverage their talents to the betterment of themselves and their families and the United States of America by considering the many opportunities that the United States Air Force has,” said Harencak. “We have 149 different career paths throughout the United States Air Force. We’re here to tell our story in hopes that we can convince as many great students as possible from Alabama State University to begin their own adventure and their own stories in the United States Air Force. We believe that we change people’s lives for the better in the United States Air Force, and we need the talent that exists here at Alabama State University and the talent that will come to Alabama State University from the high schools…all over the nation.”
Christopher Johnson is an Auburn student who is also an ASU cadet. He said he would not have been able to afford to attend college with the assistance he receives from the Air Force.
“This program here at Alabama State allowed me to go to college and become a pilot in the Air Force,” said Johnson.
Harencak’s visit was initiated by Trustee Hunter, his longtime friend.
“This is really exciting for us here at Alabama State University,” said Hunter. “We’re especially excited to have a collaboration with the United States Air Force so that we can educate not only the students of this University, but also the parents in the community, about the many opportunities that the United States Air Force offers and about the careers that young people can have in the Air Force after attending Alabama State University.
The day’s activities were coordinated by the University’s Division of Institutional Advancement and Lt. Col. Ann Graham, commander of ASU’s Air Force ROTC Detachment 019.
“We have an outstanding Air Force ROTC detachment right here (at ASU), and there are other schools that are part of this,” said Harencak. “Throughout its history, (Detachment 019) has created enormously successful Air Force officers that the United States military and our nation have benefited from.”
To learn more about careers in the Air Force, visit airforce.com. For more information about Alabama State University’s Air Force ROTC program, visit www.alasu.edu.
Major General Garrett Harencak is Commander, Air Force Recruiting Service (AFRS), Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph, Texas. He is responsible for all enlisted accessions and a variety of officer accession programs in the U.S. and abroad. AFRS also manages all strategic marketing for the U.S. Air Force.
General Harencak entered the Air Force in 1983 as a graduate of the U.S. Air Force Academy. His assignments have included aircraft command of the B-52; instructor pilot and squadron command in the B-1B; and service as aide to the Commander of the U.S. Central Command. He also directed the Headquarters, U.S. Air Force Executive Secretariat, and served as Deputy Director of Requirements at Headquarters Air Combat Command. General Harencak commanded the 7th Bomb Wing at Dyess Air Force Base, Texas, and the 509th Bomb Wing at Whiteman AFB, Missouri.
Before his current assignment, he was the Assistant Chief of Staff for Strategic Deterrence and Nuclear Integration, Headquarters for the U.S. Air Force, Washington D.C.