75 years for the Air Force Office of Special Investigations

  • Published
  • By Nicholas Pilch
  • 60th Air Mobility Wing Public Affairs

TRAVIS AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. — This year marks 75 years for the Air Force Office of Special Investigations and OSI Detachment 303 has been ­­serving locally since 1992.

To commemorate 75 years of service, OSI is celebrating its origins by telling their story, highlighting Airmen past, present and future and advancing national security priorities. In 2023, each month, the 75th Anniversary theme, “Inspired by Our Past – OSI’s Future Begins Today” will be shared by each OSI region affirming various mission sets, highlighting the support provided by each area and recounting the important work done in decades past.

Special Agents at Travis AFB, Det. 303 are revisiting their roots by sharing the counterintelligence (CI) mission of OSI, and there isn’t an area of CI Det 303 doesn’t touch.

“Det. 303 conducts activities designed to prevent or thwart spying, intelligence gathering and sabotage by an enemy or other foreign entity,” said Special Agent Lindsey Tenney, Commander, OSI Det. 303. “We also help educate Airmen on the indicators of insider threats to combat against it.”

Counterintelligence reports from an OSI Agent about a pending attack from North Korea in the weeks leading up to the start of the Korean War were the first notifications that Gen. Douglas MacArthur's headquarters received indicating that conflict was coming, demonstrating the numerous decades of OSI's CI service.

“We [OSI] conduct foreign travel briefs to personnel traveling out of the contiguous United States, in both their official and personal capacity, as well as secure the base against unauthorized foreign access,” Tenney said. “Our team provides support to research, development and acquisition programs and equities, helping to ensure U.S. innovations stay in America supporting Department of Defense interests.”

The race to safeguard critical information from our adversaries is ongoing. In the early 2000s, OSI agents helped uncover information leading to the arrest and conviction of Noshir S. Gowadia for numerous offenses against the U.S. in the B-2 Spirit spy conviction.

While Det 303 at Travis AFB is not involved in every counterintelligence operation across the Air Force, the AFOSI SA Wieger Facility at Travis hosts Special Agent training for a variety of specialized services like polygraph and technical services.

Special Agent David Wieger was killed while supporting a counterintelligence mission in Baghdad, Iraq. From 2003 until his death in 2007, Wieger was assigned to Det. 303 in the technical services section.

“David had a passion for the Air Force, the AFOSI mission, people he worked with and his family, he is missed every single day,” said  Chief Master Sgt. Karen Beirne-Flint, OSI Investigations, Collections and Operations NEXUS, in 2017 at the building naming ceremony. “In naming this building after David, all who work and will work here and that enter through this door will know the highest standard he set and the sacrifices he made.”

If you’re ever lucky enough to visit OSI Det. 303 at Travis AFB, you’ll see the tradition and spirit the team holds for the Airmen of the past, present and future, according to Tenney.

“I feel blessed every day to work with such an amazing top-tier group of professionals, dedicated to the mission and the protection of our nation,” Tenney said. “The amount of hard work, dedication and passion the agents put into their work is inspiring and I couldn’t be prouder to be part of the team and this organization.”

Air Force OSI is always looking for new talent. If want to learn more about OSI or how you can join the OSI team, visit http://www.osi.af.mil.