Airman credits Guard training for successful IT career

  • Published
  • By Tech. Sgt. Mark Thompson
  • 118th Wing

When an Airman enters the military, it’s often for patriotic reasons, coupled with a number of great benefits including education, healthcare, and a competitive salary.

Staff Sgt. Caleb, a member of the Tennessee Air National Guard’s 118th Wing in Nashville, Tennessee, is no exception. He has taken it a step further by maximizing his Air National Guard experience and rolling it into an exciting and challenging civilian information technology career.

Beginning his career with the Indiana Air National Guard as a systems administrator in 2009, Caleb soon sought more responsibility and challenges and accepted a contractor position in 2014 with the 118th WG as a network administrator. Impressed by the wing, Caleb decided he wanted to transfer to it as a guardsman. “The [ANG] has taught me a lot,” said Caleb. “Not just how to become a better systems admin, but the chance to lead and grow.”

Over the next few years Caleb earned nine information technology certifications and gained considerable Defense Department work experience, which opened doors at the Defense Finance and Accounting Service in Indianapolis. Working on the cyber network defense team there, he’s responsible for hardening and protecting the systems that support the DOD pay system, which in 2018 processed more than 135 million pay transactions.

The father of four credits his career advancement to his service in the ANG. “I owe my career successes to the guard,” Caleb said. “I would definitely not be where I am in my life if it not for the foundational IT training, the encouragement and excellent advice from the family of people here at the 118th.”

“Caleb’s bank of knowledge and morals have brought tremendous wealth to our flight,” said Senior Master Sgt. Christy, a flight superintendent at the 118th WG. “Regardless of rank or experience, all members look up to Caleb and value his opinion. We are extremely blessed to have Caleb on our team.”