National Security Forum

F-22 Demo TeamPurpose

Whether during the whole-of-nation response to World War II or during the efforts to isolate and eliminate the world's terrorist networks following the September 11th attacks, a key to American success remains the tightly knit relationship between local communities and the armed forces. In an increasingly complex and volatile strategic environment, this relationship is more important than ever.

Since 1954, the Secretary of the Air Force's National Security Forum has coupled our nation's most influential, valued civic leaders with the military's developing senior leaders to enable open discussions on historic and contemporary national security strategic realities and challenges. Over a three-day period in mid-May, attendees engage with U.S. and foreign national military officers and government civilians in a lecture and seminar structure. Although the event theme varies from year-to-year, one constant remains--establishing an environment for open engagements on the diplomatic, economic, informational, cultural, and military instruments of national power and how each benefits a more stable and prosperous world order.

Past attendees have represented a wide range of professions:

  • Corporate executives

  • Clergy

  • Community volunteers

  • Educators, K-University

  • Financial analysts

  • Legal officials

  • Media representatives

  • Medical personnel

  • State and local government

NSF Social GatheringNominations

Potential attendees are nominated by Air Force Headquarters or Wing leadership, AWC students or faculty, or senior government officials. The nomination window  typically spans the October through December timeframe for the upcoming late-spring NSF. Invitations are sent in early spring.


The formal invitation letter includes registration instructions and deadlines. Registration cost is approximately $175-$200 per person (covers scheduled meals and social events) and local lodging is approximately $140 per night.


"The NSF is a most memorable, rare, and unparalleled experience--one not to be missed."
Julia Miller, Former Mayor, Sunnyvale, CA

"Being able to dig into great power competition has shifted my viewpoints in several different areas, including clinical policy, economic policy and military strategy. I have a new level of confidence to not only speak in conversations, but to initiate conversations with my community, whether that be business leaders or local government officials."
Dustin Kaehr, Founder, The Think. Lead. Live. Group, IN

“The AWC NSF was one of the most rewarding and comprehensive programs to help civilians understand our national strategy on a host of military, economic, and cultural topics. I am truly appreciative on a personal and professional level for the opportunity to attend and contribute to the amazing forum. It was an honor to interact and share ideas with our future military leaders.”
Richard Stafford, President & Chief Executive Officer, Tower Federal Credit Union, MD

“The time I spent at the Air War College was extremely rewarding. The information we learned, the speeches we heard, and the conversation in smaller groups exceeded any expectation I had before going to Montgomery. The sense of history, the non-political analysis of current events, reinforced my prior belief that our military is well-run and by very good people. Anyone with an opportunity to go, I can only say, ‘Go!’”
Chip Williams, CLU, ChFC, CFP, Branch Manager, Williams Financial Services, Inc., FL

“The knowledge I received and the connections I have made gave me the confidence to go back to my community and make a greater impact. I could not have asked for a better experience.”
Matthew Pace, CEO, Pace PC Solutions, IT and Cybersecurity, FL

“In my first career as a law enforcement officer, I had always been a tactical thinker. The National Security Forum opened my eyes to just how important strategic thinking is. If asked by someone nominated to attend the forum, I would enthusiastically recommend they attend.”
Glenn Barham, President, Military Affairs Committee, Wichita Falls, TX


For more information, please contact the Director of the National Security Forum: