JoAnne S. Bass is the first female and Asian airman to serve as the Air Force’s senior enlisted leader, taking the oath during an Aug. 14 ceremony at Joint Base Andrews, Md.
“Twenty-seven years ago, I joined our United States Air Force with the plan of doing four quick years and figuring out what I wanted to do in life. Never would I have imagined that I would be standing before you as the 19th Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force,” Bass said at the ceremony.
She assumes leadership of the Air Force’s enlisted community on the heels of another milestone – the swearing in of Gen. Charles Q. Brown, Jr., as the service’s chief of staff. Brown is the first African American to hold the position.
Bass was selected for the promotion from a pool of more than a dozen finalists. In her previous assignment, she served as command master sergeant, 2nd Air Force, at Keesler Air Force Base, Mississippi.
“Our Air Force is on the right side of history. We are creating not only historic moments with the first African American service chief and Asian American Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force, but we are focused on setting a foundation for all Americans to see themselves in this great institution,” Bass said.