167th Communications Flight redesignated as squadron

  • Published
  • By Senior Master Sgt. Emily Beightol-Deyerle
  • 167th Airlift Wing

A ceremony marking the redesignation of the 167th Communications Flight as a squadron was held at Shepherd Field, Martinsburg, W.Va., Feb. 3, 2024.

During the ceremony the 167th Communications Squadron guidon was revealed and the 167th Communications Flight guidon was furled for the final time.

Air National Guard units nationwide are redesignating their communications flights to communications squadrons due to the growing responsibilities and emerging mission-sets required of the communications career field.

There’s been many technological advances since the communications flight was established at the 167th nearly 60 years ago, explained Lt. Col. Donald Carpenter, 167th Communications Squadron commander.

“Now we’re on the cusp of a new technological era with artificial intelligence, machine learning and large language models,” said Carpenter. “A new season requires a new approach, and the Air Force sees that and is realigning the force to do that.”

The 167th Communications Squadron units enables the information technology infrastructure of the wing. They are responsible for the computer and networking hardware, printers, cell phones, handheld tablets, software deployment, software updates, communications security for the classified network, radio equipment, wireless networks, base fiber optic and copper infrastructure that connects the wing to the Department of Defense network.

As a squadron, the communications unit is postured to take on additional roles to protect cyberspace platforms and to meet expeditionary and mission generation support requirements.

Carpenter acknowledged that there will be challenges as the squadron adjusts to the new mission-sets but said they will get through it.

“We’ve been on a journey for three years to reshape the organization to what it is today,” he said. “We’ll continue to drive that needle forward to much greater success.”