Reimagining Headquarters Initiative Focuses on a Modern, Competitive Civil Air Patrol

What happens if Civil Air Patrol takes on more than it can effectively manage? Finding the answer to that question is the basis for the Reimagining Headquarters initiative now underway. The impetus was the Board of Governors’ charge to National Headquarters managers to ensure “CAP is a competitive, modern organization with the agility and innovation to continue meeting the marketplace needs of our customers and stakeholders.”


Maj. Gen. Edward Phelka (right), national commander/CEO, and Chief Operating Officer John Desmarais (left) recently met with national staff, both employees and volunteers. They discussed the initiative and their intention to make sure the organization is moving in the right direction to achieve the strategic objectives the board set.


Change starts with a new organizational structure (below) that realigns parts of the organization under four new positions three chiefs and one senior director. The concept is that combining several directorates under one new leader will foster a culture of collaboration, creativity, and continuous improvement, encouraging new ideas, solutions, and practices that can address the complex and evolving issues facing CAP.


“Really, this is about expanding our capability to do the best possible work for CAP and the missions that we have,” Phelka said. “Our members and employees do this because we strongly believe that we have meaningful missions. We want to be able to accomplish those missions in an efficient and effective way so that we can continue to serve communities, save lives and shape futures.”

More About This Initiative and a Larger Look at the Organizational Chart

Father-Son Pilot Team Deliver New Aircraft

One of the Texas Wing’s newest cadet pilots recently teamed with his father, a fellow flyer, in delivering a brand-new CAP aircraft to the Stinson Composite Squadron in San Antonio.

Cadet Lt. Col. Ian Urquiola of the David Lee (Tex) Hill Composite and his father, Capt. Mauricio Urquiola, the squadron’s commander (pictured), flew the aircraft from Textron Aviation Inc.'s Cessna Customer Delivery Center at Independence Municipal Airport in Kansas.

The Urquiolas got a flight to the Kansas airport Dec. 18 courtesy of Lt. Col. Lee Saage, Georgetown Composite Squadron maintenance officer.

The new aircraft was one of seven new planes recently added to CAP’s fleet.

More About the Urquiolas and Their Delivery

Cadet Commended for Post-Collision Actions

Cadet Senior Airman Tony Henry's quick actions in tending to a motorcyclist who ran into the cadet's vehicle earned him an Arizona Wing Certificate of Commendation for Humanitarian/Lifesaving Action.

The accident on Aug. 31 occurred just three days after a weekly Sky Harbor Composite Squadron meeting that featured a safety briefing covering emergency response tools and guidelines, and he quickly put that knowledge to work in turning his attention to the injured biker.

Col. Robert Pinckard, the wing’s commander until Jan. 6, and Capt. Roseanne Marquez, Henry's squadron commander, presented the cadet with the commendation.

More About Henry and His Commendation

This video from Minnesota State University, Mankato, features one of its aviation school graduates Delta Airlines Capt. and Civil Air Patrol Maj. Catherine Plasschaert, who also is one of CAP's Youth Aviation Initiative panel members. Honoring Plasschaert as its 2023 Gala Volunteer of the Year, the Minnesota State Mankato mentions her contributions to CAP and also features two of her Cadet Wings graduates — Ibrahim Abdirahman, #152, and her daughter, Tabitha Plasschaert, #5.

More About Plasschaert and Her CAP Impact

NHQ News

Outage Leads to Extension of CadetInvest, Special Activities Registration Deadlines

Civil Air Patrol's eServices experienced downtime over the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday weekend because of severe weather conditions in the Midwest, leading to a global outage for Microsoft Azure.

This technical difficulty experienced the evening of Jan. 14 and the morning of Jan. 15 affected CAP's ability to carry out essential tasks, posing potential challenges meeting the original deadlines for CadetInvest (academic and flight scholarships and flight programs, plus financial assistance) and National Cadet Special Activities applications. As a result, the deadlines have been extended:

  • CadetInvest applications — Monday, Jan. 22, noon Central Time.

  • NCSA applications — Thursday, Jan. 18, 11:59 p.m. Central Time.

Anyone with concerns or questions should reach out to Cadet Programs at this link.

Register Now for CadetInvest
Register Now for NCSAs

Cyber Training Opportunities Open to Members

In 2020, Civil Air Patrol entered into a partnership with Cisco Networking Academy. Free, quality cyber education for all CAP members continues, with the Introduction to Data Science Learn-A-Thon starting Feb. 12 and running through Feb. 26. All CAP members are encouraged to register and participate.

This six-hour introductory course takes learners inside the world of data science. They'll learn the basics in the fields of data science, data analytics and data engineering to better understand how machine learning is shaping the future of business, health care, education and more.

Upon completion, members will earn a digital badge to share on various social media platforms. Additionally, the first Cisco Networking Academy cohort of 2024 has opened. Once CAP members complete the Learn-A-Thon, they should consider enrolling in one of the 15 Cisco Networking Academy Courses, available in both English and Spanish.

More About These Cyber Training Opportunities

Historic Awards Gala Planned in Nation's Capital

The Spaatz Association's annual Awards Gala, set for March 2 in Washington, D.C., after National Legislative Day on Capitol Hill and immediately following the Winter Command Council, will be a historic gathering.

Participants will recognize the 2,500th recipient of the Gen. Carl A. Spaatz Award — CAP's highest cadet achievement — while celebrating the 60th anniversary of the award and the 30th anniversary of the association.

Gen. David W. Allvin, the U.S. Air Force chief of staff, will be the keynote speaker. Other program highlights will include Spaatz award presentations, the unveiling of a new Lifetime Recognition Program, and presentation of the “Torch Award” for mentors of Spaatz award recipients.

Visit for More Details and Registration

Applications Sought for Upcoming CEO Vacancy

Through March 5, Civil Air Patrol is accepting applications for the national commander/CEO vacancy to be created when Maj. Gen. Edward D. Phelka's three-year term ends in August.

Members may nominate themselves to fill this position. Minimum requirements are:

  • Be a CAP member in good standing.
  • Have a bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university.
  • Have completed Level V of the CAP Education and Training Program.
  • Have served as a CAP wing commander who completed their term of office other than due to a removal for cause.
More Details and Instructions on Applying for CAP's Top Command Post

CAP Has Your First New Year's Resolution Covered

With the new year here, we're all thinking about New Year’s resolutions. One of these may include a certain extra or unwanted vehicle of yours that has been sitting around for some time. Instead of stressing, let CAP cover this one for you.


The Vehicle Donation Program allows you to donate your car, plane, RV, or boat as a new way to give back, and we’ll use the proceeds to support CAP’s mission. The pickup is free, and we’ll take the stressful paperwork off your desk to clear room for the fun resolutions.

More About CAP's Vehicle Donation Program

Don't Miss CAP's Noteworthy Accomplishments of 2023

If you missed it in the Jan. 2 edition of PROPS, Civil Air Patrol recorded many amazing accomplishments in 2023, so the Marketing & Communications team chose 10 accomplishments to represent as many different directorates as possible. The 10 achievements, featured in this video, are still available for viewing on CAP's YouTube Channel at this link and also noted below:

  1. 60 Lives Saved
  2. Auxiliary Listed on Homepage
  3. History Team Commemorated 50th Anniversary of End of Vietnam War
  4. CAP Foundation Exceeded $4M in Managed Funds
  5. Operation Pulse Lift Success Continues
  6. ACE Participation Sets New Record
  7. Orientation Flight Hours Set a 15-year High
  8. Cadet Membership Topped 29,000
  9. CAP Featured on Smithsonian Channel Broadcast
  10. Registration Zone App Launched

Top Headlines

“Civil Air Patrol [Squadron] Completes 100th Blood Drive”

“Burke Civil Air Patrol Squadron Holds Change of Command Ceremony”

“Livingston Teen, Son of Immigrants, Wins Civil Air Patrol Award”

As Operation Pulse Lift begins its humanitarian support to those in need during 2024, the mission calls on CAP members to help out.

There is a national shortage of blood with normal donations down by one third. There is a particular need for O negative (universal donation) blood.

We have and can continue to make a big difference, said Lt. Col. Robert Ditch, the mission's director. Please encourage your members to donate (if possible), it would help toward filling the shortage.”

Report Your Blood Donations to CAP

For more information, go to Operation Pulse Lift's new webpage on There you will find the latest Blood Donation Center schedules, instructions on how to set up a BDC, and other mission information.

Submit to PROPS
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