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Little Rock Air Force Base’s first female commander reflects on her time serving in central Arkansas



Little Rock, Arkansas – The community is being told that the sky is the limit by the first female 19th Airlift Wing Commander at Little Rock Air Force Base.

Her journey across central Arkansas is soon coming to a close, but not before she takes a moment to reflect on her achievements and what it has been like to assist others forge their own paths.

Col. Angela Ochoa has had a hectic two years at the facility.

She arrived in the year 2021, in the midst of COVID-19, and is getting ready to leave in a few months.

“We’re so lucky to have people that are willing to stand up and serve our nation and potentially even give their lives for it,” Col. Ochoa said.

Col. Ochoa, who currently serves as the highest-ranking official at LRAFB, is undoubtedly one of those who has stood up and risked her life for our nation.

Col. Ochoa expressed the hope that being the first woman to take the top command position at the installation will inspire other women.

“It doesn’t matter what your gender is, it doesn’t matter what color your skin is, it doesn’t matter where you come from,” she said. “What matters is how hard you work, and what you do.”

For the past two years, she has had a busy schedule that includes getting up early to work out, going to her office for meetings with community leaders, and, of course, getting in the cockpit.

Stress is also a part of such hectic days because LRAFB staff members are always preparing for the worst.

“We have a lot of different extremist acts that are going on throughout the world and we also have to prepare for tomorrow,” Col. Ochoa said. “That’s a very challenging environment because the wars we fight today and the wars we’ve fought in the past are not the same as what we need to potentially be ready for in the future.”

Col. Ochoa stated that she is fondly remembering her time at LRAFB as she gets ready for her upcoming assignment as a commander at a post in Maryland and believes that our nation is in excellent hands with these specific individuals serving us. She expressed gratitude for having had even a small part in teaching them how to defend our dear country.

“I have full trust and confidence in all of their abilities to continue to lead forward, no matter what the situation is,” she said.

It’s also important to note that the Little Rock Airforce Base’s airshow, which has been absent for a few years, will return in October and feature the Thunderbirds as its featured act.

A STEM fair for students will also be part of the two-day event.

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