Spotlight on Real Property Examiner Mrs. Patricia Smith

  • Published
  • By Lt. Col. Kate Hutson
  • 174th Attack Wing

Perhaps you have seen a professional lady amidst the sea of ABUs in Facility Utilization Board meeting or a construction progress meeting on base. You may have seen her at a Children's Holiday gathering or at a welcome home from deployment event. She was probably smiling and putting the spotlight on someone else. That is what our Real Property Examiner, Mrs. Patricia Smith, does to support Hancock Field.

One of very few civilians on base, Pat transferred from Budget and Finance in Latham to Syracuse in September 1997. She started as a Production Controller, but quickly took on additional responsibility and was selected to fill the Real Property Examiner position in 2004. For the past nine years she has meticulously managed 54 buildings and 174 facilities on Hancock Field and 356 acres of land. She also maintains all property records for three Geographically Separated Units including Fort Drum and Eastern Area Defense Sector. Her record accuracy ensures the wing obtains scarce sustainment funding to maintain our facilities.

I had the pleasure to serve with Pat in Civil Engineering and quickly learned to value her organizational skills and ability to build positive connections with military leaders from the National Guard Bureau, Joint Force Headquarters New York and throughout the continental United States. As a direct result of her efforts, the Wing was able to allow Columbia College to continue to operate with a land lease on base allowing military members to access undergraduate and graduate evening classes at a discounted rate.
She was instrumental in the Military Entrance Processing Station (MEPS) on base and navigate both Army and Air Force guidance to secure land use at Fort Drum to support the brand new MQ-9 maintenance Launch and Recovery Element hangar. Pat is consistently recognized as an expert in her field; she was selected as a Superior Performer and presented a highly coveted Inspection General coin, during the 2007 Air Combat Command Unit Compliance Inspection. National Guard Bureau handpicked her to serve as a Real Property Trainer for other Air National Guard units.

Pat is most proud of, "working with everyone and seeing the mission conversion and progress on base." She recently traveled to Fort Drum to observe the first MQ-9 Launch and the ribbon cutting at our new Launch and Recovery Element hangar. Seeing her hard work result in mission accomplishment is something she can be very proud of. As she prepares to retire this spring to spend time with her husband and two children, I wanted to ensure people knew a bit more about the professional lady who works quietly behind the scenes to secure the future of our facilities.