(Rome, NY – Jan. 25, 2013) More than 100 New York Air National Guardsmen, Canadian Forces members, federal civilians and guests were in attendance at the Radisson Hotel in Utica last Friday as the Eastern Air Defense Sector recognized its outstanding performers from 2012.
Among the award recipients was Capt. Bradley Dunford of Wampsville who earned Outstanding Company Grade Officer. Capt. Dunford was evaluated as the best of the unit’s nearly 40 air weapons officers and won EADS Top Scope weapons and tactics competition for the second straight year.
“EADS’ mission of protecting the eastern U.S. airspace requires consistent excellence from all of our staff,” said Col. Dawne Deskins, EADS Commander. “Our 2012 award winners distinguished themselves by going above and beyond our high standards and I congratulate each of them on their outstanding accomplishments and thank them for their extraordinary efforts.”
EADS employs more than 400 active-duty military, federal civilians, civilian contractors and part-time Air National Guardsmen and the unit recognized outstanding performers in six categories. The categories were: company grade officer (junior officers below the rank of major), senior noncommissioned officer, noncommissioned officer, junior enlisted airman and honor guard member. The outstanding civilian of the year was also recognized.
Other award recipients were:
• . Master Sgt. Chris Spurrier, Andrews AFB, Md., Outstanding Senior Noncommissioned Officer. A member of EADS Detachment 1 at Joint Base Anacostia-Bolling (JBAB) in Washington, D.C., Master Sgt. Spurrier managed more than $9 million in contract and budget expenditures. He also serves as president of JBAB’s “Top 3,” a senior noncommissioned officers’ organization that represents more than 190 senior NCOs on the base.
• . Tech. Sgt. Joshua Barrett, Camden, Outstanding Noncommissioned Officer. Rated exceptionally qualified during his position evaluation, Tech. Sgt. Barrett’s tactical skills were judged as “best seen to date” by a recent Headquarters 1st Air Force/Air Forces Northern inspection team.
• . Airman 1st Class Matthew Weber, Outstanding Airman. A tracking technician, A1C Weber required only 70 percent of the allotted time to qualify for his position. Recognized for his work ethic, creativity and operational skills, he is also a recent winner of the “Iron Airman” award, given for physical fitness.
• . Master Sgt. Tracy Blum, Rome, Outstanding Honor Guard Member. A senior member of the Honor Guard, Master Sgt. Blum volunteered 96 hours of his time – a total of 12 workdays – to support Honor Guard events. He personally participated in nearly one-third of the 72 total details EADS Honor Guard performed in 2012.
• . Sonepith Keoviengsamay, Rome, Outstanding Civilian. Mr. Keoviengsamay’s management of 25 personnel during an Air Force cyber readiness inspection last June was instrumental in the unit’s outstanding rating. He was also named the Air National Guard’s Outstanding Civilian Manager in the Information Dominance category.
The Eastern Air Defense Sector is headquartered at Griffiss Business and Technology Park in Rome. Staffed by active-duty New York Air National Guardsmen and a Canadian Forces detachment, the unit supports the North American Aerospace Defense Command’s (NORAD) integrated warning and attack assessment missions and the U.S. Northern Command’s (USNORTHCOM) homeland defense mission. EADS is responsible for air sovereignty and counter-air operations over the eastern United States and directs a variety of assets to defend one million square miles of land and sea.