Col. Corey Simmons took the helm of the 60th Air Mobility Wing July 17, 2020, during a change-of-command ceremony at Travis AFB.
Simmons, who previously commanded the 71st Flying Training Wing at Vance AFB, Oklahoma, took command of the wing from Col. Jeff Nelson, who is Pentagon-bound for his next assignment.
“Corey is an accomplished leader, and he’s well prepared for this next adventure,” said Maj. Gen. Sam Barrett, 18th Air Force commander, Scott AFB, Illinois, who presided over the ceremony.
The ceremony included the presentation of colors, the transfer of authority and responsibility of the wing from Nelson to Simmons, static displays of the C-5M Super Galaxy, KC-10 Extender and C-17 Globemaster III and a limited audience. The limited number of attendees and participants maintained social distancing and wore face coverings to maintain COVID-19 mitigation measures while celebrating the historic event.
Simmons is now responsible for the combined efforts of all wing operations and support activities associated with the worldwide air mobility mission here. He is also accountable for ensuring the readiness and well-being of more than 26,100 active duty, Reserve, civilian personnel and their families.
“I want to thank each member of Team Travis for your selfless devotion to duty,” said Simmons, a command pilot with more than 3,000 hours in the C-17 and various trainer aircraft. “You have a rich heritage of rapidly projecting American power – anytime, anywhere, and I am extremely excited to be a part of this amazing team and to continue your legacy of excellence.”
Simmons offered six promises to the Team Travis community, and said trust between leaders and Airmen is foundational to unit success.
“Trust is foundational to everything we, the military, do,” said Simmons. “Trust is a two-way street, trust that we have your back…and in turn, we hope you will trust your leadership team to have Team Travis’ best interests in mind.
The new commander further intends to foster an environment of professionalism, dignity and respect, and he plans to instill pride in his team – while focusing on Airmen, their families and unit readiness.
“With these six promises, Chief Schultz and I want to continue fostering a culture where we have the right Airmen, with the best training, who trust each other so much that we have zero excuses in continuing the legacy of excellence that is Team Travis,” he said.
Simmons takes command during the recent, unprecedented challenges of a global pandemic, where Travis AFB has led the way for support and operations within Air Mobility Command. In his farewell speech, Nelson reflected on the character of the 60th AMW Airmen in the face of this adversity.
“What I have witnessed first-hand over my time here was our innate ability to rise together as one...to put one foot in front of the other…to fight the good fight,” said Nelson. “It has been a gift to work alongside such an extraordinary team.”
Simmons’ change of command occurred simultaneously as Chief Master Sgt. Rob Schulz also joined Team Travis as the new 60th AMW command chief. Nelson, who has known Simmons for 15 years, expressed his excitement and confidence in the new command team.
“They are the right people to lead this wing at this time,” said Nelson. “Team Travis is lucky to have them take the helm today.”
Simmons also bid farewell to the outgoing commander.
“Thank you to Col. Nelson and his wife, Courtney for the warm welcome you gave my family upon arrival here,” Simmons said. “You have led Team Travis through tough, uncertain times with steady purpose and calm resolve - and now hand me the flag of a unit, thriving in the business of air mobility. Your imprint is everywhere on Travis. We will do our best to continue what you started.”