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Secretary Barrett visits Team Mildenhall

Secretary of the Air Force Barbara Barrett meets with Airmen from the 100th Civil Engineer Squadron fire department during her visit to RAF Mildenhall, England, Feb. 13, 2020.  Barrett stopped at the air traffic control tower, fire station and various units within the 352 Special Operations Wing during her visit. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Luke Milano)

Secretary of the Air Force Barbara Barrett meets with Airmen from the 100th Civil Engineer Squadron fire department during her visit to RAF Mildenhall, England, Feb. 13, 2020. Barrett stopped at the air traffic control tower, fire station and various units within the 352 Special Operations Wing during her visit. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Luke Milano)

Secretary of the Air Force Barbara Barrett looks out over the base and surrounding community with Col. Troy Pananon, 100th Air Refueling Wing commander, and Col. Clay Freeman, 352 Special Operations Wing commander, atop the air traffic control tower during her visit to RAF Mildenhall, England, Feb. 13, 2020. During Barrett’s visit she spoke to members of RAF Mildenhall about Team Mildenhall’s mission, Air Force modernization and listen to their innovative ideas on how to improve the base. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Luke Milano)

Secretary of the Air Force Barbara Barrett looks out over the base and surrounding community with Col. Troy Pananon, 100th Air Refueling Wing commander, and Col. Clay Freeman, 352 Special Operations Wing commander, atop the air traffic control tower during her visit to RAF Mildenhall, England, Feb. 13, 2020. During Barrett’s visit she spoke to members of RAF Mildenhall about Team Mildenhall’s mission, Air Force modernization and listen to their innovative ideas on how to improve the base. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Luke Milano)

Tech. Sgt. Ralph Steele, 100th Logistics Readiness Squadron section chief of plans and integration, speaks to Secretary of the Air Force Barbara Barrett during her visit to RAF Mildenhall, England, Feb. 13, 2020. Barrett’s visit to RAF Mildenhall was her first as the 25th Secretary of the Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Luke Milano)

Tech. Sgt. Ralph Steele, 100th Logistics Readiness Squadron section chief of plans and integration, speaks to Secretary of the Air Force Barbara Barrett during her visit to RAF Mildenhall, England, Feb. 13, 2020. Barrett’s visit to RAF Mildenhall was her first as the 25th Secretary of the Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Luke Milano)

Secretary of the Air Force Barbara Barrett performs maintenance training as Staff Sgt. Patrick Leach, 100th Maintenance Squadron aircraft fuels systems craftsman, explains the unit’s fuel-cell trainer keeps Airmen proficient at their job, during her visit to RAF Mildenhall, England, Feb. 13, 2020. During Barrett’s visit she engaged with RAF Mildenhall Airmen about Team Mildenhall’s mission, Air Force modernization and readiness. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Luke Milano)

Secretary of the Air Force Barbara Barrett performs maintenance training as Staff Sgt. Patrick Leach, 100th Maintenance Squadron aircraft fuels systems craftsman, explains the unit’s fuel-cell trainer keeps Airmen proficient at their job, during her visit to RAF Mildenhall, England, Feb. 13, 2020. During Barrett’s visit she engaged with RAF Mildenhall Airmen about Team Mildenhall’s mission, Air Force modernization and readiness. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Luke Milano)

Secretary of the Air Force Barbara Barrett speaks with 352 Special Operations Wing air commandos during her visit to RAF Mildenhall, England, Feb. 13, 2020. During Barrett’s visit she stopped at various units including the air traffic control tower, fire station and different units within the 352 SOW. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Luke Milano)

Secretary of the Air Force Barbara Barrett speaks with 352 Special Operations Wing air commandos during her visit to RAF Mildenhall, England, Feb. 13, 2020. During Barrett’s visit she stopped at various units including the air traffic control tower, fire station and different units within the 352 SOW. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Luke Milano)

Secretary of the Air Force Barbara Barrett prepares for an interview with Airman 1st Class Antonia Herrera, 100th Air Refueling Wing broadcast journalist, during her visit to RAF Mildenhall, England, Feb. 13, 2020. Barrett's visit to RAF Mildenhall was her first as the 25th Secretary of the Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Brandon Esau)

Secretary of the Air Force Barbara Barrett prepares for an interview with Airman 1st Class Antonia Herrera, 100th Air Refueling Wing broadcast journalist, during her visit to RAF Mildenhall, England, Feb. 13, 2020. Barrett's visit to RAF Mildenhall was her first as the 25th Secretary of the Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Brandon Esau)

RAF MILDENHALL, England -- Secretary of the Air Force Barbara Barrett met with Team Mildenhall Airmen and families and toured the installation for the first time Feb. 13, 2020, at RAF Mildenhall, England.

The 25th Secretary of the Air Force visited the air traffic control tower, fire station and various units within the 352 Special Operations Wing.

Barrett spoke to members of RAF Mildenhall about Team Mildenhall’s mission, Air Force modernization and listened to their innovative ideas on how to improve the base.

“This is a key base for the United States, and a key opportunity for us to work well with our allies and partners,” Barrett said. “It’s terrific to see the joint work that our Airmen are doing with the leadership from the United Kingdom and working from here on missions from many geographical locations.”

Being the first Secretary of the Space Force and a trained astronaut, she emphasized the importance of developing the Department of Defense’s newest military branch.

“It is very exciting to be a part of the stand-up for the Space Force,” said Barrett. “We all use space, but many people don’t think about how much space plays a role in their lives. It’s important for us to defend those assets that make our way of life possible. We need to be prepared to deter belligerent action in space.”

Barrett also expressed her admiration for Team Mildenhall.

“I’d like to add my great appreciation for the men and women I’ve had the privilege to interact with,” Barrett said. “From the extraordinarily innovative training, to the maintenance teams who have done great things, to the selfless operators who are flying in the aircraft. It’s wonderful to see how well this base is operating.”