COMSEC, maintaining accountability and control

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Magen M. Reeves
  • 341st Missile Wing Public Affairs
Managing communications security can be critical to maintaining safe, secure and effective operations.

COMSEC management can be comprised of several tasks including maintaining accountability of classified materials and administering training to missileers on the proper handling of sensitive documents and information.

For Kevin Younkin, 341st Operations Support Squadron security specialist, COMSEC is a way of life.

“I help manage the base’s COMSEC top secret control accounts,” said Younkin. “Maintaining accountability and control, which could include the destruction and legitimacy of critical training documents, is part of my team’s day-to-day training operations.”

Younkin and his peers assist in training and developing missileers to ensure critical information doesn’t end up in the wrong place or the wrong hands.

Younkin said holding the position he does now was a smooth progression for him.

“I served as a missileer at Malmstrom from 1995 to 2001,” said Younkin. “I then retired as a lieutenant colonel in the Reserves. Transitioning to COMSEC management as a civilian was a natural move for me. I have been in this position for nine years and I enjoy being where I am.”

Younkin and his team have received numerous awards at the wing level throughout the years.

“Leaders recognize my team and I are busy,” said Younkin. “That’s not to say no one else is busy, a lot of people are busy, what I mean is our amount and level of focus is simply different due to the nature of the information we are tasked to handle.”

Younkin and his peers work in a small, secure area. However, he is well known throughout the 341st OSS as a friendly and energetic individual.

“Kevin was my mentor when I was a missileer,” said Shannon Pea, 341st OSS unit program coordinator. “I served as a missileer until 2009 and Kevin was here training me then as he is now.”

According to Pea, Younkin has always been a valuable asset not only in operations but for squadron morale as well.

“He is extremely knowledgeable,” said Pea. “He is very calm and collected in handling his job but he is always smiling. Whenever he comes into my office he almost always has a joke to share and is awesome to be around.”

According to Younkin, when the time came, there was no question where he wanted to retire.

“My wife and her family are from here,” said Younkin. “I like the area and have no plans to leave. I am treated with the same respect as any other individual here and I am comfortable with my level of responsibility managing mission critical information.”

He also said that having coworkers like Pea made the decision an easy one for him.

“The best part about my job is the people I work with,” said Younkin. “It’s true what they say that in every job, in every position and in any place, it is the people who make the job.”