FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE (Jan. 9, 2017)
Contact: Erik Greenfield, Communications Manager, 608-443-1952 (office), 608-669-7884 (cell)
MADISON – Today the Greater Madison Chamber of Commerce announced Together Truax, the next step of an initiative designed to support the effort to base the F-35A aircraft at Madison’s 115th Fighter Wing. The initiative includes a new website and social media pages in addition to ongoing advocacy.
“This community supports the men and women of the 115th Fighter Wing, and this initiative is just one more way to demonstrate that as federal officials review the finalist sites,” said Chamber President Zach Brandon. “The base’s $100 million in annual economic impact, the emergency response services it provides for Dane County Regional Airport and the tuition assistance paid to our colleges and universities for area students who serve in the Guard mean that having the F-35 at Truax is more than a national defense asset, it is an economic opportunity.”
The Air Force announced in December that the 115th is one of five finalist sites, with the two bases that will receive the next-generation jets to be named at a later date. Meanwhile, federal, state and local elected officials representing Dane County have already shown strong support for the Truax base.
“Truax, which is home to the dedicated men and women of the 115th Fighter Wing, is an ideal candidate for the F-35A mission,” said U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin. “We bring to this mission tremendous strategic, geographic and economic capabilities. The base and its personnel play an essential role in protecting the safety and security of Wisconsin and our nation, and I have been proud to serve as their champion in Congress for more than 17 years. I will continue to advocate for Truax’s selection for this new mission, which will provide an enduring economic benefit to the local community and Wisconsin.”
“The economic impact that the 115th Fighter Wing of the Air National Guard plays in the Madison and surrounding area is immense,” said Madison Mayor Paul Soglin. “This unit, in addition to the 750 Guard members, results in quality employment for 450 individuals. These employees and their families live, work and play in the Madison area and are respected members of our community. The value these jets bring to the city is immeasurable.”
“As a former fighter pilot stationed at Truax and the State Senator who represents the airport, I know the value of hosting the F-35s to our community,” said State Sen. Mark Miller (D-Monona). “Wisconsin, Dane County and Madison have much to offer and I believe that our 115th Fighter Wing will rise above the other four contenders.”
“Truax Field has been a crucial economic cornerstone of the Northside of Madison for generations. The men and women who work there support our country and our community. Their children attend our schools, they support our local businesses, and live in our neighborhoods,” said State Rep. Melissa Sargent (D-Madison). “As the State Representative for this area, and a lifelong resident of Madison, I know that it is important that we continue to support our friends and neighbors who are the bedrock of our community.”
“We greatly appreciate the many business, community and elected leaders from all levels of government who are supporting this effort,” added Brandon. “We look forward to continuing to build support as we make the case for the 115th in the coming months.”
TogetherTruax.com will feature the latest news and frequently asked questions, as well as opportunities to sign up for updates and ways to contact elected representatives. You can visit the website here, like Together Truax on Facebook here and follow Together Truax on Twitter here.
About the Greater Madison Chamber of Commerce:
The Greater Madison Chamber of Commerce is the voice of business with nearly 1,300 organizations – ranging from one-person shops to corporations with more than 9,500 employees – working to bring the Greater Madison area to its full potential. The Greater Madison region is a leader in innovation. From cutting-edge technologies to distinctive retail shops to inventive services and products, our members vary greatly but are united by the region’s entrepreneurial spirit. More information can be found at greatermadisonchamber.com.