Linebacker of the Week: Staff Sgt. Barry East

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Emily Saxton

 U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Barry East, the noncommissioned officer in charge of health information systems assigned to the 36th Healthcare Operations Squadron, was recognized as the 36th Wing’s Team Andersen Linebacker of the Week, at Andersen Air Force Base, Guam, Oct. 5, 2022.

The Team Andersen Linebacker of the Week recognizes outstanding enlisted, officer, civilian and total force personnel who have had an impact on achieving Team Andersen’s mission, vision and priorities.

Since arriving at Andersen AFB in 2019, East has served as the NCOIC of health information systems, overseeing three contractors, supporting 13 clinics and 36,000 annual appointments. As an information technology and asset manager, East reduces network vulnerabilities, and repairs hardware and software issues. He recently guided the group through a major server upgrade, improving the care of 5,700 beneficiaries. East has also identified a vulnerability due to the implementation of new software and developed a resolution, resetting the equipment and reestablishing connectivity. Due to his initiative, East mitigated a complete network outage with no interruption to patient care.

Additionally, East instructs the Air Force Patient Safety course and conducts monthly training for 192 medical staff members. He serves as the program manager for two contingency support vehicles, in support of 24/7 emergency response, two operation plans and human disaster relief patient transport.

“If the network goes down, that’s something I have to figure out, and if I don’t figure it out were not doing patient care,” said East. “It’s equal parts exciting and terrifying.”

Furthermore, East has been the sole information technology support for two months due to a staff turnover and led the 36th Medical Group through the Office 365 migration. He assisted users through the transition, as half of the staff experienced complications. Lastly, East serves as the group’s soccer coach, leading joint members across four units. He has supported multiple morale and resiliency events by organizing and cooking food for 81 unit members.

“Everything is like a puzzle that I have to figure out,” said East. “Every day is something a little new.”

The term Linebacker is rooted deep within Team Andersen’s history. Operation Linebacker II took place on Dec. 18, 1972, and was the largest number of heavy bomber strikes launched by the U.S. Air Force since the end of World War II. During the operation, B-52s from Andersen flew round-the-clock bombing missions over North Vietnam to destroy major targets in Hanoi and Haiphong in an effort to bring the Democratic Republic of Vietnam back to negotiations.

The recipient will have the opportunity to sign a “Linebacker” football jersey that will be displayed in the Wing Headquarters building.

Way to go, East!