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America's Airman: Master Sgt. Andres Portela

By Airman 1st Class Spencer Slocum 316th Wing Public Affairs

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Full Name, Rank, Job Title and Unit:

Master Sgt. Andres Ramon Portela, 316th Wing Equal Opportunity Office

Hometown city and state (country if not U.S):

Sierra Vista, Arizona

Why did you decide to serve in the military?

I visited my older sister (MSgt Portela) at Barksdale and witnessed the type of lifestyle she had.  She had a job, house, car and plenty of friends.  It was nice and I immediately told myself that’s going to be my game plan when I graduate high school. 

How do you think your job impacts the Wing’s mission? 

As an EO advisor my job directly impacts the human relations climate within the wing.  We advise, train and educate commanders, leaders and Airmen on the EO program, policies, procedures and issues that impact the EO climate and unit readiness.

What has been your favorite assignment/ Tour of duty and why?

Nellis AFB, Nev.  It was my first duty station, but I did a significant amount of growing and coming into my own at that base. I couldn’t enjoy it the way most people who were stationed there did because I was under-age, but that did not stop me from enjoying boxing and mixed martial arts fights!

What is your dream assignment and why? 

Joint Base Andrews!  I’ve wanted to be stationed here since I joined the military. The area has plenty of restaurants, sports, culture and my in-laws are here.  My children are now growing up around their cousins and grandparents!

 

What is the coolest thing you have done in the military? 

The experience at the Defense Equal Opportunity Management Institute.  The tech school was practically on the beach and we discussed topics that are near and dear to my heart.  I would recommend it for anyone and everyone!

What hobbies do you have?

Cooking, playing cards with my wife, shooting rifles and watching YouTube videos.

What is the biggest challenge you have faced in your life? 

My son had complications when he was born at Shephard AFB, Texas, and the doctors immediately took him from us and drove him by ambulance two hours away to Cooks Children’s hospital in Fort Worth, Texas.  It took my fellow wingman and my little sister to assist us with our children so my wife and I could be there for my son.  He is now six years old and loud as can be.