Face of Defense: Airman Thrives on Responsibility, Sets the Example


After college graduation, Dannyel Butte worked as an admissions counselor. However, she wanted a more fulfilling career, something that made her feel like she was a part of a team.

U.S. Air Force Col. Michael Hernandez, 325th Fighter Wing commander, coins Senior Airman Dannyel Butt.
Air Force Col. Michael Hernandez, 325th Fighter Wing commander, left, provides a commander’s coin to Air Force Senior Airman Dannyel Butte, a bioenvironmental engineering journeyman with the 325th Aerospace Medicine Squadron at Tyndall Air Force Base, Fla., May 4, 2018. Butte was observed by Hernandez as part of the Airman Shadow program, whereby airmen demonstrate their daily job duties and responsibilities to their commanders. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Delaney Gonzales
U.S. Air Force Col. Michael Hernandez, 325th Fighter Wing commander, coins Senior Airman Dannyel Butt.
180504-F-WW878-1151
Air Force Col. Michael Hernandez, 325th Fighter Wing commander, left, provides a commander’s coin to Air Force Senior Airman Dannyel Butte, a bioenvironmental engineering journeyman with the 325th Aerospace Medicine Squadron at Tyndall Air Force Base, Fla., May 4, 2018. Butte was observed by Hernandez as part of the Airman Shadow program, whereby airmen demonstrate their daily job duties and responsibilities to their commanders. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Delaney Gonzales

After waiting nearly two years for a spot in a police academy, she decided to pursue other options. At age 24, her journey landed her in an Air Force recruiter’s office.

Now she’s an Air Force senior airman, and her life has changed.

Selfless Service

“My perspective on life has transformed from not only myself, but to service,” said Butte, who serves as a bioenvironmental engineering journeyman with the 325th Aerospace Medicine Squadron here.

“My goal is to do everything I can to better myself in order to be an effective member in the United States Air Force,” she said.

Butte has worked in the bioenvironmental engineering field for more than two years. Bioenvironmental engineering airmen help reduce workplace health concerns throughout the Air Force. They help to establish the proper personal protective equipment that should be worn, develop safety procedures, and ensure Air Force facilities are in compliance with Occupational Safety and Health Administration standards.

Butte said she puts her best foot forward when accomplishing demanding tasks.

Thrives on Responsibility

“I would say you get a lot of responsibility early on in the bio [environmental engineering] career field,” said Butte, who hails from Findlay, Ohio. “This pushed me to live up to that and achieve more than what is expected of me. I’m motivated by work, so if work presents itself, I want to perform my best.”

U.S. Air Force Senior Airman Dannyel Butte, 325th Aerospace Medicine Squadron bioenvironmental engineering journeyman, assists Lt. Col. Linda Coates, 325th Aerospace Medicine Squadron commander, don a chemical protective suit.
Air Force Senior Airman Dannyel Butte, a bioenvironmental engineering journeyman with the 325th Aerospace Medicine Squadron, left, assists Air Force Lt. Col. Linda Coates, the 325th AMS’s commander, don a protective suit at Tyndall Air Force Base, Fla., May 4, 2018. The suit helps protect bioenvironmental engineering airmen from exposure to chemical, biological, radiological and neurological agents. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Delaney Gonzales
U.S. Air Force Senior Airman Dannyel Butte, 325th Aerospace Medicine Squadron bioenvironmental engineering journeyman, assists Lt. Col. Linda Coates, 325th Aerospace Medicine Squadron commander, don a chemical protective suit.
Bioenvironmental Engineering
Air Force Senior Airman Dannyel Butte, a bioenvironmental engineering journeyman with the 325th Aerospace Medicine Squadron, left, assists Air Force Lt. Col. Linda Coates, the 325th AMS’s commander, don a protective suit at Tyndall Air Force Base, Fla., May 4, 2018. The suit helps protect bioenvironmental engineering airmen from exposure to chemical, biological, radiological and neurological agents. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Delaney Gonzales

Although Butte has served in the Air Force for less than three years, she has accomplished much.

She has been awarded one wing and several group quarterly awards. Butte also received a merit promotion to senior airman’s rank in 2017.

“Butte is by far one of the sharpest airmen I know and she will continue to strive for excellence,” said Air Force Senior Airman Gabriel Albano, Butte’s supervisor.

As a result of her outstanding performance, Butte was selected to participate in the Airman Shadow program here, whereby airmen demonstrate their job duties to the base commander.

‘She Constantly Takes the Initiative’

“Butte was my first choice for the Airman Shadow program,” Albano said. “She constantly takes the initiative to become proficient in her job duties, applies her expertise to the programs she manages, and mentors others on- and off-duty.”

One of her career accomplishments helped improve the Air Force by creating safer work centers for airmen. She led the Department of Defense’s first rapid airfield repair process evaluation, where she identified a carcinogen or cancer-causing agent.

“I ask myself, ‘What can we do to protect them?’” Butte said.