Airman and Family Readiness best in ANG for third time

  • Published
  • By 1st Lt. Brooks Payette
  • 157th Air Refueling Wing Public Affairs
For the third time and for the second straight year, the 157th Air Refueling Wing was selected as the 2015 Department of Defense Reserve Family Readiness Award winner for the Air National Guard.

The 157 ARW Airman and Family Readiness Program supports the 'Total Force Mission Readiness' through a multitude of programs and activities provided, not only to the Airmen of the Wing but to all branches of military service and most importantly to the family members.

"The award highlights how our family program partners with hundreds of community volunteers to deliver services that support our total force Airmen and their families," said 157 ARW Commander Col. Shawn "Rob" Burrus. "These efforts are increasingly important during a period of historic levels of deployments and the preparation to receive the KC-46A."

The wing was selected based on criteria that included command involvement, innovative development/initiatives, and community linkage/Total Force focus. The unit is also one of seven reserve units to be recognized with this award.  Units were nominated and selected as winners for their exemplary care of Reserve and National Guard families while maintaining outstanding unit readiness.

Representatives from the wing will receive their award during the Department of Defense awards presentation February 26 in the Pentagon's Hall of Heroes.

Col. Peter Sullivan, vice commander of the 157 ARW, said the multiple recognitions were unprecedented and a true testament to the dedication, commitment and professionalism of the team. He praised the innovative leadership and coordination of Airmen and Family Readiness Program Manager Bonnie Rice, and the support provided by the Chaplain service, the Director of Psychological Health and the Yellow Ribbon Program Coordinator.

"We are so fortunate to have such a caring team of professionals committed to our Airmen and their families," said Sullivan. "Special thanks also go to the countless volunteers and organizations that Bonnie does a masterful job of networking with to support our military members and their families."

Representatives from each of the winning units receive a commemorative plaque and framed certificate along with a certificate and cash award from the Military Officers Association of America. The cash award is provided to further advance the care of the service members and their families.

"We continue to be blessed with the finest Airman and Family Readiness Program in the Department of Defense," said 157 ARW Command Chief Master Sgt. Jamie Lawrence. "Bonnie Rice and the entire Airman and Family Readiness team treat our members and their families with the utmost professionalism, dignity and respect."

The DoD Reserve Family Readiness Awards Program was established in 2000 to recognize the top unit-level Family Readiness program in each of the Reserve components.  Family readiness programs are particularly important as the United States relies on significant numbers of reservists to serve in critical locations worldwide.  Family readiness has proven to be a key component of mission readiness.  Robust Family Readiness Programs have enhanced the deployability of Guard and Reserve units and they represent a vital link in the support networks for our reserve families.