Reading List

Chief of Staff of the Air Force

Professional Reading List


Hidden Figures

20th Century Fox

Hidden Figures tells the true story of three African-American female mathematicians working for NASA during the beginning of the U.S. Space Program. They were vital to many of the program’s early successes, including – one of history's greatest operations – the launching of the first manned orbit.


Tuskegee Airmen

HBO Studios

The exciting story of the "Fighting 99th" - the first squadron of Black American pilots to be allowed to fight for their country. It is 1943 and the Germans are winning WWII as the U.S. suffers huge losses on the ground and in the air. Four newly recruited pilots are united by a desire to serve their country, at a time when black flyers are not welcomed in the Air Force. Now, through the brutal demands of their training, to the perils of flying over nations at war, the men they call "The Tuskegee Airmen" must undertake the riskiest mission of their lives- to prove to America that courage knows no color. Their success could earn them respect, save lives, and help win a terrible war. Their failure could destroy more hopes and dreams than their own.


The Vietnam War


THE VIETNAM WAR is a ten-part, 18-hour film series directed by Ken Burns and Lynn Novick that will air on PBS in September 2017. In an immersive 360-degree narrative, Burns and Novick tell the epic story of the Vietnam War as it has never before been told on film. THE VIETNAM WAR features testimony from nearly 80 witnesses, including many Americans who fought in the war and others who opposed it, as well as Vietnamese combatants and civilians from both the winning and losing sides.


Frontline: Confronting ISIS

PBS Distribution

This documentary analyzes two years of US-led efforts to defeat ISIS. In it, correspondent Martin Smith travels with one of Iraq’s Shia militia groups, as well as Kurdish Peshmerga fighters who are less than a mile from ISIS. He also meets the father of a Jordanian pilot who was burned to death by ISIS, and sits down for candid interviews with leaders including current and former U.S. Secretaries of Defense Ashton Carter and Chuck Hagel, embattled Iraqi president Haider al-Abadi, and Saudi Arabia’s controversial Grand Mufti, Abdul Aziz Sheikh.


Three ways to plan for the (very) long term

Ari Wallach

We increasingly make decisions based on short-term goals and gains—an approach that makes the future more uncertain and less safe. How can we learn to think about and plan for a better future in the long term… like, grandchildren-scale long term? Ari Wallach shares three tactics for thinking beyond the immediate.


The Military Case for Sharing Knowledge

Stanley McChrystal

When General Stanley McChrystal started fighting al Qaeda in 2003, information and secrets were the lifeblood of his operations. But as the unconventional battle waged on, he began to think that the culture of keeping important information classified was misguided and actually counterproductive. In a short but powerful talk McChrystal makes the case for actively sharing knowledge.


How to Make Stress Your Friend

Kelly McGonigal

Stress. It makes your heart pound, your breathing quicken and your forehead sweat. But while stress has been made into a public health enemy, new research suggests that stress may only be bad for you if you believe that to be the case. Psychologist Kelly McGonigal urges us to see stress as a positive, and introduces us to an unsung mechanism for stress reduction: reaching out to others.


The Puzzle of Motivation

Daniel Pink

Career analyst Dan Pink examines the puzzle of motivation, starting with a fact that social scientists know but most managers don't: Traditional rewards aren't always as effective as we think. Listen for illuminating stories — and maybe, a way forward.


Where Good Ideas Come From

Steve Johnson

People often credit their ideas to individual "Eureka!" moments. But Steven Johnson shows how history tells a different story. His fascinating tour takes us from the "liquid networks" of London's coffee houses to Charles Darwin's long, slow hunch to today's high-velocity web.