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Recruiting the Future and Living the Dream

  • Published
  • By by Staff Sgt. Sonia Clark
  • 145th Airlift Wing

While the world might consider 2020 to be a bad year, there is one member of the North Carolina Air National Guard who used it to excel; that person is U.S. Air Force Technical Sgt. Nikki Morgan, a Recruiter with the 145th Force Support Squadron. Tech. Sgt. Morgan was recently recognized and coined for an outstanding job performance on February 6, 2021, at the North Carolina Air National Guard base, Charlotte Douglas International Airport.

North Carolina Air National Guard Chief of Staff, Brig. General Alan R. Cecil, presented Technical Sergeant Morgan with the coin. Morgan’s efforts over the past 2 years have helped the Wing stay above 90-percent strength for both Fiscal Year 2019, and 2020.

According to North Carolina Air National Guard State Production Superintendent, Senior Master Sgt. Joe Laskowski, at the beginning of the fiscal year, goals are based off of the Wing’s average losses during the previous 3 years, along with some other factors. For fiscal year 2019, the 145th Airlift Wing’s strength was at 98-percent, for 2020, the Wing was at 100-percent strength, and for 2021, it is at 101.8-percent strength.

Tech. Sgt. Morgan, who started out in the Army National Guard, has only been a recruiter for two and a half years. She then enlisted in the Air National Guard as a personnel specialist before becoming a recruiter. Her decision to become a recruiter was based on her own experience when she enlisted in the Air National Guard.

“I wanted to be a recruiter to help people join the Air National Guard, get the experience like I got, and benefit from the Air Force’s best kept secret,” Tech. Sgt. Morgan explains.

For fiscal year 2019, Tech. Sgt. Morgan’s rookie year, her goal was 36 and she garnered 53 enlistees. This put her over her recruiting goal for that year by 144-percent. Last year, fiscal year 2020, she set her goal slightly lower because she was expecting a baby. Still, with a goal of 27, Tech. Sgt. Morgan garnered 39 enlistees, which put her 147-percent above her goal.

“She is well on her way to doing great things this year as well,” Senior Master Sgt. Joe Laskowski states. “While on maternity leave last year, she still managed to enlist people into the Wing. That speaks to the resourcefulness and the passion she has not just for the recruiting job but the people she helps and also for the Wing and the squadrons,” he adds.

Tech. Sgt. Morgan says her motivation as a recruiter is to inform others, specifically high school students, that they have choices for funding their education. “I want to get the word out there and let them know that they have other options to pay for college.”

Moreover, with regards to exceeding her goal, Tech. Sgt. Morgan says, “Just because you meet your goal, does not mean you stop. People still want to join. It is not just about the numbers. I really love my job. It makes it easy to sell a product when you 100-percent believe in it.”

Master Sgt. Frankie Strothers, Recruiting Flight Chief, describes Technical Sergeant Morgan as the type of recruiter the unit needs, “She takes care of others and herself. She is committed to the job and recognizes the challenges that we all face.”

Senior Master Sgt. Laskowski also praises the Wing’s recruiting team as a whole. “We just have a good group of recruiters. It’s great to see the enthusiasm they bring.” He adds, “This is a high-pressure job, but pressure more so comes from the recruiters’ expectations of themselves to help others and to do their job well.”

Additionally, Senior Master Sgt. Laskowski acknowledges the Wing members themselves for helping with the effort, “The Wing members are spreading the word; recruiting family and friends. The word is getting out that the Wing in Charlotte is a great place to be.”
Moreover, Senior Master Sgt. Laskowski mentions that Active Duty service members are actively enlisting with the unit, “We have a lot of Active Duty personnel who want to transfer to Charlotte.”

The overall appeal for Charlotte, and the Air National Guard may be in Technical Sgt. Morgan’s final thoughts about joining the Air Force, “The Air Force is just like a small family, which sets us apart from any other branch. You are not just enlisting into a career-field, you are enlisting into a family.”