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IG: New badge ensures mission readiness

The inspector general office Air Force-wide adopted a new duty badge in August 2014, which is now worn by all assigned IG inspectors at RAF Mildenhall. (U.S. Air Force graphic)

The inspector general office Air Force-wide adopted a new duty badge in August 2014, which is now worn by all assigned IG inspectors at RAF Mildenhall. (U.S. Air Force graphic)

RAF MILDENHALL, England -- The inspector general office Air Force-wide adopted a new duty badge in August 2014, which is now worn by all assigned IG inspectors at RAF Mildenhall.

Until recently, inspectors could either continue to wear their own career-field duty badge, or remove it and wear no badge at all. However, that would sometimes cause them problems in being taken seriously when doing their inspections.

"Before the new badge came out, people didn't recognize us as 'official' IG, and when we first started wearing it, some questioned our badge and challenged it," said Master Sgt. Joel Villarin, 100th ARW Inspector General Readiness Inspections superintendent from Orange Park, Florida.

The 100th ARW IG inspector team performs a vital role in ensuring mission success.

"We allow commanders to get a real sense for how their units are performing in the face of actual mission accomplishments," explained Capt. Mark Berthelotte, KC-135 Stratotanker pilot and 100th ARW IG Readiness Inspections chief from Nashua, New Hampshire.

Villarin emphasized that the key word for what they do is 'help.'

"It's important to remember that as IG inspectors, we're not (just) watching over people to ensure they're doing their job correctly; we're there to assist folks in doing their job better," Villarin said.

The inspector general duty badge is a continuation of efforts to improve and strengthen IG force development, training and certification, foster recruitment, and strengthen the ranks of Air force IG personnel, according to the Secretary of the Air Force Inspector General. The badge is only issued once assigned IG inspectors have been properly trained, certified and sworn in.

With the new badge, the 100th ARW IG office will continue to inspect Team Mildenhall to ensure mission readiness and success.