The enlisted Airman: motivated, dedicated, a step above the rest

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Magen M. Reeves
  • 341st Missile Wing Public Affairs
The United States Air Force is home to some of the world's most motivated and dedicated individuals. The Air Force's enlisted force is comprised of less than 1 percent of the American population; individuals who have stepped up to answer their nation's call.

One such person is Senior Airman Stephanie Iannapollo.

In the pediatrics office at the 341st Medical Operation Squadron, Iannapollo greets everyone who walks to the reception desk with a brilliant smile and a friendly, "Hi, how can I help you?"

"She's very motivated," said Staff Sgt. Fenella Lynch, Iannapollo's previous supervisor and co-worker. "She's always enthusiastic and always has a positive outlook. She's a good mentor, even to me at times."

Iannapollo joined the Air Force four years ago after growing up in a lower-income household.

"My mom was having another child and my sister was going to college the following year," said Iannapollo. "I didn't want to add to my family's debt and started looking into joining the military."

After researching the military, she decided to enlist as a candidate for open general, meaning she would be given a career field that the Air Force required additional manning in.

"My family has served in our sister services but I am the first female to join the Air Force," said Iannapollo. "I wanted to make an impact in the world and help others. I also wanted to take advantage of the benefits that are offered, such as education."

To Iannapollo's surprise, she was assigned to medical operations.

"Although medical was not what I originally wanted, I came to appreciate what I do as a health service manager, specifically as a pediatric medical office manager," said Iannapollo. "I want to pursue my dream of becoming a nurse. I plan to receive my degree then apply to the Nurse Enlisted Commissioning Program. I want to have a challenging and rewarding profession; a career that will make a difference in someone's life."

Iannapollo is not content to stop at being just an exceptional Airman in the 341st MDOS.

"I am the Airman's Council event coordinator," said Iannapollo. "My mission as an event coordinator is to hold events that Airmen want to and will participate in, increase quality of life, provide volunteer opportunities, and help Airmen with professional development."

Iannapollo's next big project with the Airman's Council is coordinating a free dodgeball tournament Aug. 29, where Airmen can play dodgeball together and eat free food provided by the Chief's Council.

Iannapollo's dedication to ensuring her fellow Airmen enjoy themselves here at Malmstrom is apparent to those around her.

"My wife is an avid member of several organizations around the base and nearly dedicates all of her time to them," said Staff Sgt. Dominic Iannapollo, 341st MDOS. "She loves to give and make those around her happy. She wants our Airmen to live fun, healthy and stress free lives."

Putting together an event takes time and commitment. From reserving locations, asking for sponsors, ensuring food will be available and advertising the event to get Airmen participation; Iannapollo does it all.

"It takes someone that's dedicated and motivated," said Lynch. "Not just any Airman can do that job."

Iannapollo also manages the Malmstrom Airman's Council Facebook page and posts about upcoming events.

"Rest assured with Stephanie as the events coordinator for the Airman's Council, she will give the Airmen plenty of fun, free events to help relieve some stress, build good healthy relationships with one another, and foster that wingman attitude we all rely on in the United States Air Force," said Dominic.

Iannapollo hopes to re-enlist next year to continue to give motivation, dedication and exceptional performance skills she has perfected over the years to the Airmen who have taken the oath to serve.

"I am committed to helping out in any way," said Iannapollo, "especially to those who have given up their lives to the Armed Services and our nation, and their families who have endured so much."