Volk Field welcomes new commander to nation’s premier training complex
By By Tech. Sgt. Andrea Rhode
/ Published September 10, 2020
VOLK FIELD AIR NATIONAL GUARD BASE, Wis. -- Volk Field Airmen, civilians and distinguished guests welcomed their new commander during an assumption of command ceremony in Hangar 504 at Volk Field Air National Guard Base Sept. 10.
Brig. Gen. David May, Wisconsin’s deputy adjutant general for Air, gave the welcoming speech in which he introduced the incoming commander, Col. Leslie Zyzda-Martin.
“Hopefully by now you’ve read her biography in the program, and you’ve seen all the amazing things that she has done in her career,” May said. “What I see in her background, is an officer who, whether she knew it or not, was preparing to not just be the Volk Field commander, but to be the Volk Field commander at this time.”
Zyzda-Martin, Volk Field’s 12th commander, laid out her plans for the base, including virtual opportunities that could help the entire nation overcome COVID hurdles.
“We have the opportunity to truly shape how the (Department of Defense) trains,” she said. “The country and the world are struggling through uncharted COVID times. We must protect ourselves, our families and our country, while still doing our mission.”
She also shared her excitement and thankfulness for being selected as the Volk Field commander.
“There is something good about not being from here,” Zyzda-Martin said. “I come with a fresh set of eyes, and an open mind. I come without preconceived notions. I come with genuine excitement for getting to know the new community, the team and the mission. I come from Washington D.C. and believe me, Wisconsin smiles are brighter, the grass is greener and the air is fresher, so I’m happy to be here.”
Zyzda-Martin concluded her speech with the following.
“There’s no place I’d rather be,” she said.
As the room was called to attention, she received her very first salute from those she now leads.
“Volk field is in great hands,” May said. “You have the passion, the drive, and the heart to get the job done with integrity and decisiveness. In other words, you’re the right officer for the right command at the right time.”