#IAMAFCE: Meet Capt. Jamela Satterfield

  • Published
  • AFIMSC Public Affairs

(Editor's Note: Engineers Week is this month and we wanted to take the opportunity to spotlight members of the Air Force Civil Engineer Center and Air Force Installation and Mission Support Center team doing great things for the Air Force and civil engineering community.)

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-LACKLAND, Texas -- Meet Capt. Jamela Dominique Sharrie Satterfield, the facilities sustainment restoration and modernization requirements integration chief in the Air Force Installation and Mission Support Center’s Installation Support Directorate, Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, Texas.

What are your main responsibilities? 
I oversee and assist in allocating funds to stateside and overseas Air Force installations for facility requirements. Facility requirements include all recurring maintenance and repair project costs, real property renovation project costs and planning and design costs associated with modernization projects.

What is the best thing about your job? 
Having the high-level view of how installations obtain the funds they need for projects, such as sustainment endeavors. I have influence on building the processes and policies that affect the outcome of those projects.

As a child, what job did you want to have when you grew up? 
My interests have always landed in biology and chemistry, so naturally I wanted to be a doctor growing up. I’ve had stitches three times. Those experiences made me realize I would never overcome my discomfort with needles and seeing skin cut open. I grew up and realized medicine wasn’t for me.

What made you pursue engineering as a career? 
Since a young age, engineering and math had always been a hobby of mine. My grandfather and I would spend time together by building and repairing things around my house. Those moments spent of installing windows, carpet, building closets and fences, and repairing things around the house are some of my most cherished childhood memories. Those experiences shaped how I navigated whether the field of science, technology, engineering and math would be a good fit for me. 

What is your favorite part about being an Air Force Civil Engineer? 
Although the majority of my day involves being in the office, as an Air Force civil engineer it has given me the freedom to be more hands on with my flight squadron. There are times I get to be out of the office and work alongside the flights to advance mission readiness. 

Why is your job important to the Air Force mission? 
As the advocate for installations, I ensure money is directed where it’s needed the most — maintaining, repairing and modernizing buildings, structures, roadways, aircraft aprons, railway tracks, utility plants distribution systems and other real property. By doing that I help keep our bases battle ready.

What advice do you have for someone new to the engineering field?  
With how much there is to learn and experience coming into the engineering field, I would advise beginners to avoid tunnel vision. The Air Force has so much to offer. Get out there and explore it all.

What motivates and inspires you the most? 
As an engineer, I’m inspired by our ability to make something where there was once nothing. One of the most impactful experiences I had was the opportunity to build a bare base during one of my deployments. I’m also inspired when I’m able to help someone and feel like I made a difference.