Left, Chandra Brown, Air Force Reserve Command media training program manager, and Heather Newcomb, AFRC Public Affairs deputy director, offer suggestions to Col. James Fontanella as he receives instructions on press conferences and meeting with the media. The training is designed to be as realistic as possible and can range from friendly interviews to dealing with aggressive reporters. (U.S. Air Force photo by Sue Sapp)
3/8/2013 - ROBINS AIR FORCE BASE,Ga. -- Interacting with the media can be pretty daunting for a wing commander - regardless how positive or negative the message he or she is sharing.
However, Air Force Reserve Command Public Affairs has a program in place to help them feel a little more at home in front of the cameras.
The office conducts media training in its multimedia center at Robins for AFRC wing commanders twice a year in conjunction with the Professional Development Center's Wing Commanders Course. The class lasts about 90 minutes, during which commanders are briefed on different scenarios such as interviews and press conferences.
Then, they meet with mock media in front of real television cameras where the scenarios can range from friendly to hostile.
The training not only helps prepare commanders for situations they may face in their positions, but also helps public affairs come up with more diverse scenarios for training and keep up with current issues commanders may have to address, according to Heather Newcomb, AFRC PA deputy director.
Once the instruction is complete, commanders are provided a recording of their training with critiques.