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Stephens eager to propel Hanscom, community forward

Stephens eager to propel Hanscom, community forward

Col. Katrina Stephens, 66th Air Base Group commander, smiles with members of her executive office team at Hanscom Air Force Base, Mass., June 29. Stephens accepted command of the 66 ABG and installation during a change of command ceremony here June 24. (U.S. Air Force photo by Todd Maki)

HANSCOM AIR FORCE BASE, Mass. – The new 66th Air Base Group commander is eager to continue building and fostering relationships with mission partners across the community.

Col. Katrina Stephens said she will focus on strengthening partnerships through two-way communication; by serving as an ambassador for Team Hansom and educating Hanscom’s Airmen on what the community has to offer.

“We will continue to develop, enhance and possibly create new partnerships along the way,” said Stephens. “We have an opportunity to open the aperture even further than we already have.”

Stephens describes her leadership style as simple: treat others the way you want to be treated.

She credits her parents and various mentors for instilling in her the philosophy that communication is key, words matter and taking care of people is everything.

“Our people are our most valuable asset,” she said. “We need to embrace their diversity, ingenuity and empower them.”

Stephens graduated from Western Kentucky University and was commissioned through the Air Force Reserve Officer Training Corps. She has served nearly 24 years as a career personnel officer. She was assigned to Hanscom previously as a company grade officer, and said she could not be happier to be back in support of the Air Force Materiel Command mission.

“There is nothing I’d rather be doing than serving as the installation commander here, and leading the civilians, contractors, officers and enlisted members of the 66th ABG,” said Stephens.

Stephens and her husband, Charlie, are most excited to revisit the North End in Boston, the local historical sights and New Hampshire Lakes Region as well as watch the foliage change. The pair also share a love of New England sports teams.

“We are exactly where we want to be,” she said.

As she looks ahead to the future of Hanscom, Stephens said her goals include broadening horizons for the entire installation through educational opportunities, ensuring the health and safety as the installation continues on the road to full capacity, and finding new ways to tackle the unknown.

“Challenges give us a unique opportunity to try new things and explore new ways of doing business,” she said. “Regardless of what comes our way, I’ll continue to be a champion of our program executive offices, our mission partners and the people of the 66th ABG.”

Stephens said the greatest gift she ever received was from a retired chief master sergeant, and she intends to pay it forward during her tenure here.

“He gave me permission to be unapologetically myself, and it’s resonated with me ever since,” she said. “My challenge to the men and women of Hanscom is for them to be the best versions of themselves, because what they bring to the table makes us great.”