In a recent virtual press conference, U.S. Air Force Recruiting Service (AFRS) commander Maj. Gen. Ed Thomas announced plans to increase the diversity of airmen by targeting and attracting high-quality candidates. But he stressed that there would be no quotas because it would not be productive or legal to hold recruiters accountable and the Air Force will not lower the bar to meet its diversity goals. The Space Force will share the same targets as the Air Force.
Diversity among airmen is very important because it is where most of the leadership of the Air Force comes from. But currently, 86% of pilots are white men and only 3% are women. Thomas said there were improvements in diversity over the past four years, but more work remains to be done.
Lt. Col. Annie Driscoll, commander of the AFRS Detachment 1 that was created to develop new and innovative recruiting programs, added they would work to restore the luster of aviation America’s youth through education and engagement.