RH3 Media Hearing Book - June 20, 2005 St Louis, MO Page: 77 of 81
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company, Unicorn Corp.
Skinner was with the Illinois National Guard and U.S. Army from 1957 to 1968.
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Barrett lobbies to keep 440th Wing open;
Team from state meets with base closure panel
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel (Wisconsin)
KATHERINE M. SKIBA
June 10, 2005
Washington - Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett on Thursday joined the ranks of officials from
Wisconsin visiting to urge that the 440th Airlift Wing remain at Mitchell International Airport.
Barrett met two analysts from the Base Realignment and Closure Commission in Arlington, Va.,
saying afterward that he was "guardedly optimistic" about the Air Force Reserve unit staying put.
The commission is evaluating the Pentagon's list of bases recommended for closure or
realignment While the panel may modify the list, only 15% of those identified for closure have
survived previous rounds of base closings, he said.
Asked the likelihood of keeping the unit, Barrett said: "There's no question we're swimming
He was joined in his meeting by Paul Bock, chief of staff to Sen. Herb Kohl, a Wisconsin
Democrat, and two lobbyists from Whyte Hirschboeck Dudek, hired by the governor to make the
case for the 440th. They are John Rogers and Steve Moffitt.
The 440th operates eight C-130H Hercules transport planes. The Air Force would send the wing
to an Air Force base in North Carolina and distribute its aircraft to two other Southern states. Its
aim is to have fewer, larger squadrons to streamline and bolster readiness.
Barrett, for his part, said the strongest case for retaining the unit was its successes in recruitment
and retention of personnel.
While the unit recruits from Milwaukee, he noted that it has offices in Chicago and Green Bay,
giving it a population base of 12 million from which to draw.
"There's the issue of patriotism," he remarked, saying people wanted to serve as reservists in the
armed forces, particularly the Air Force, while living at home. "They should not be denied that
opportunity," he said.
Barrett, who spent 10 years representing Milwaukee in the House of Representatives, had a hand
in getting the 440th off the base closure list in 1995. Rogers, a former Pentagon official, also
played a role then as a lobbyist.
Rogers said the mayor's arguments seemed to have resonance with the analysts, calling that the
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United States. Defense Base Closure and Realignment Commission. RH3 Media Hearing Book - June 20, 2005 St Louis, MO, legal document, November 4, 2005; (https://digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc24404/m1/77/: accessed May 25, 2019), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, https://digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.