The Kirtland Partnership Committee seeks to support, preserve and grow Kirtland Air Force Base (KAFB) by helping to enhance existing missions and attract appropriate new missions. We increase awareness of the significant Annual Economic Impact of KAFB, currently ~$7.5 billion dollars. Our surrounding communities have overwhelmingly supported Kirtland Air Force Base for more than seventy years as part of the National Security Complex. We interface with decision-makers to underscore the importance of and contributions made to national defense by Kirtland Air Force Base.
KAFB is a complex installation, hosting more than 100 mission partners which answer to nine major commands. Most Air Force Bases report to one or two major commands. (See Below)
“In New Mexico, the Annual Economic Impact of Kirtland Air Force Base is almost $6.7 billion dollars.”
The Kirtland Partnership Committee (KPC) is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt, community-based organization that is financially supported by its membership along with strong support from the City of Albuquerque and Bernalillo County. KPC’s mission is to “support, preserve and grow” Kirtland Air Force Base, AFRL and Sandia National Labs, which comprise the “Kirtland National Security Complex,” the crown jewels of national security. Although work to support Kirtland had been ongoing since the 1980s, KPC formally began as a response to the 1995 BRAC round. We organized the community and federal congressional delegation so successfully that KAFB was ultimately removed from the realignment list. Following that very public success, the community came together to formally create the Kirtland Partnership Committee to maintain consistency as the primary community-based advocacy organization for Kirtland AFB.
Following our initial 1995 BRAC success, we continue to work in support of KAFB’s significant issues, including:
- Belen Alexander Airport: facilitated State support through the New Mexico Aviation Division ($4.5 million State Funds), created additional capability for 58th SOW
- Buffer Zone, east of Kirtland: worked with the DOE, NNSA, 377th ABW, to prevent encroachment
- Centerfire Drop Zone: KPC helped the 58th SOW replace a Drop Zone in 2003 via a short-term solution from New Mexico State Land Office, followed by a long-term lease with Centerfire Realty. Centerfire DZ is located south of Kirtland.
- Cibola National Forest: KPC supported 377th ABW commander to mitigate concerns surrounding training, misuse of CNF property by 342nd CCTS
- Civic Leader Programs: Subsequent to its founding, KPC attained membership in the following AF Civic Leader Programs: Global Strike Command, Air Education and Training Command, Materiel Command, Chief of Staff of the Air Force
- Corrosion Control Facility: 58th SOW, advocated for Congressional insert
- Distributed Mission Operations Center (DMOC): advocated for Congressional insert
- Education: KPC maintains consistent dialogue with Albuquerque Public Schools and helped to raise Sandia Base Elementary School’s rating from an “F” in 2013 to a “B”
- Kirtland/Community Sustainability Committee: Organized December 2015, continued to work on hold-over actions from the Kirtland Joint Land Use Study, JLUS Implementation, and Kirtland Installation Complex Encroachment Management Action Plan (ICEMAP) with wide governmental agency participation, quarterly meetings
- Operationally Responsive Space (ORS): achieved NM Gross Receipts Tax Exemption in 2013
- Flight simulator facility 58th SOW: supported Congressional insert
- Wherry Elementary School: At the behest of the DOD Office of Economic Adjustment, KPC engaged in OEA Grant, $16.3 million, intense dialogue with APS, Kirtland for the award of a $16.3M grant for facilities upgrade; similar efforts currently underway to rebuild Sandia Base Elementary School
- Valle Del Oro: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Refuge southwest of Kirtland/Sunport, closely monitoring impact on Kirtland, Sunport traffic
- Fuel Plume: Following the discovery of the Bulk Fuels Facility fuel plume in 1999, KPC supported a balanced remediation approach that included financial and SME resources; plume significantly contained
- State of New Mexico Military Base Planning Program
- Reciprocity of Licensure: KPC ushered legislation that was signed into law on 26 Feb 2020 providing expedited licensure to military spouses, family members, and veterans while waiving fees over a three-year timeframe
The membership of the Kirtland Partnership Committee represents a cross section of the community from small business owners who see airmen in their shops to CEOs of the largest corporations in New Mexico. There are roughly 100 members in the general membership and currently 17 members on the Executive Board. There are typically 1-2 annual meetings for the entire membership which include a briefing from the 377th ABW Commander as well as other speakers. The smaller Executive Board meets monthly to address the direction and administration of KPC. Dominique Foley Wilson, Executive Director, is working to increase the KPC’s exposure in the community.