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Technical Sergeant Sarah Howard-Carter

Technical Sergeant Sarah Howard-Carter is a flutist with the United States Air Force Band of the Golden West, Travis AFB, CA. She also serves as the unit’s Section Chief of Resources. Originally from Virginia Beach, VA, her Air Force career began in 2006 with The Band of the United States Air Force Reserve in Warner Robins, GA.

Technical Sergeant Howard-Carter is a 2001 graduate of Shenandoah Conservatory, Winchester, VA, where she earned a Bachelor of Music Performance degree. In 2004 she received a Master of Music Performance degree from The University of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN. In 2003, TSgt Howard-Carter performed as principal flute and soloist with The University of Tennessee Wind Ensemble at Carnegie Hall. While living in Tennessee, she was principal flute and soloist with the Oak Ridge Symphony Orchestra. She has taught extensively throughout the Mid-Atlantic and served as a flute teacher and woodwind coach at Baltimore School for the Arts and the Waldorf School in Baltimore, MD. She actively worked with the Macon Symphony Youth orchestra as their woodwind coach, and has performed with the Macon Symphony, Augusta Symphony, Savannah Philharmonic, Virginia Symphony, and Baltimore Symphony. SSgt Howard-Carter has won Music Teacher's National Association competitions in the states of Virginia and Tennessee. Her primary teachers include Frances Lapp Averitt and Shelley Binder.

TSgt Howard-Carter began her Air Force career as a member of the two time Emmy nominated Band of the United States Air Force Reserve. She participated in tours with the woodwind quintet” Force Five,” as musical director and operations representative, premiering new works for the ensemble. During her tenure, the quintet performed with the Grammy nominated woodwind quintet, Imani Winds. In 2010, TSgt Howard premiered the new arrangement, written by Mike Mower, of his Concerto for Flute and Wind Orchestra on the band’s annual winter tour. She also performed the Concerto in Puerto Rico and was featured on DoD Live, a joint services blog that reaches over one million servicemen worldwide. After the band was decommissioned, TSgt Howard-Carter was assigned to The Heritage of America Band at Joint Base Langley/Fort Eustis, VA, where she was musical director and operations representative for Langley Winds woodwind ensemble. She was instrumental in having 8 compositions commissioned for the non-traditional group before being assigned to The United States Air Forces in Europe Band where she performed as a featured soloist with the National Military Orchestra of Croatia. With a passion for mental health and resilience, TSgt Howard-Carter was featured on “Know Your Mil,” an Armed Forces Network broadcast highlighting her resilience journey and inspiring military members worldwide. TSgt Howard-Carter is currently assigned to The Band of the Golden West, Travis AFB, CA. She performs in the concert band, ceremonial band and woodwind quintet, and also serves as a Master Resiliency Trainer for 60th Air Mobility Wing.   

2001 Bachelor of Music Performance, Shenandoah Conservatory
2004 Master of Music Performance, The University of Tennessee
2011 Airman Leadership School
2022 Non-Commissioned Officer Academy

1. Robins Air Force Base, GA April 2006-July 2013
2. Joint Base Langley-Eustis, VA July 2013-June 2016
3. Ramstein AFB, Germany June 2016-August 2021
4. Travis AFB, CA August 2021-present

Air Force Commendation Medal, third oak leaf cluster
Air and Space Force Organizational Excellence Award
Air Force Good Conduct Medal, fourth oak leaf cluster
National Defense Service Medal
Global War on Terrorism Service Medal
Air Force Longevity Service Medal, third oak leaf cluster
2008 Airman of the Year, Headquarters Air Force Reserve Command
2010 Airman of the Year, Headquarters Air Force Reserve Command
2022 NCO of the Year, Air Mobility Command/Public Affairs
2022 Tuskegee Award Winner, Air Mobility Command/Public Affairs

A1C 14 February 2006
SrA 14 June 2006
SSgt 01 September 2011
TSgt 01 August 2020