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Test Center welcomes new commander

Col. Richard Dennee, right, assumes command of the Air National Guard Air Force Reserve Command Test Center with a symbolic passing of the AATC guideon from Maj. Gen. Rick Moisio, Air National Guard deputy director, May 21. (Air Force photo by Master Sgt. Dave Neve)

Col. Richard Dennee, right, assumes command of the Air National Guard Air Force Reserve Command Test Center with a symbolic passing of the AATC guideon from Maj. Gen. Rick Moisio, Air National Guard deputy director, May 21. (Air Force photo by Master Sgt. Dave Neve)

TUCSON, Ariz. -- The Air National Guard Air Force Reserve Command Test Center (AATC) at Tucson International Airport welcomed a new commander May 21.

Col. Richard Dennee assumed command receiving the AATC guideon from Maj. Gen. Rick Moisio, the deputy director of the Air National Guard and former 162nd Fighter Wing commander.

In April, Colonel Dennee completed a six-month deployment to Camp Victory, Iraq, where he served as the senior liaison officer for the deputy commanding general for advisory and training. His most recent stateside assignment was as the director of Air National Guard Plans and Programs at the National Guard Bureau headquarters in Arlington, Va. He is an F-15 pilot with more than 3,800 hours in fighter, trainer and airlift aircraft.

The AATC mission is to conduct operational tests on behalf of the Air National Guard and the Air Force Reserve Command. As a tenant unit hosted by the Arizona Air National Guard's 162nd Fighter Wing, the compact team composed of about 70 active duty, Reserve component, civilian and contractor members works to field low-cost, low-risk, off-the-shelf improvements for Guard and Reserve aircraft and weapon systems.

"I've heard people describe this organization as a national treasure. I couldn't agree more," said Colonel Dennee. "To the women and men of AATC, you're the heart of this organization. Past commanders will attest to that. The legacy of almost 28 years as a test organization speaks volumes about our proud history. This organization brings important capabilities to the Reserve component and the Air Force."

The new commander commented on the future of the Test Center and the opportunities that will arise in an ever-changing Air Force.

"New opportunities await us if you are bold and determined to seek out those opportunities. We have the talent to make that happen. We owe it to our citizen warriors and sister services to give them the best capabilities to perform the mission. Together we will continue the tradition of excellence that has proven us worthy as a national treasure," he said.