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AFA honors Air National Guard members

JOINT BASE ANDREWS, Md. -- The Air Force Association's D.W. Steele Sr. Memorial Chapter hosted the 11th Annual AFA Salute to the Air National Guard recognizing personnel assigned to the National Guard Bureau during a recent ceremony in Arlington, Va.

"The AFA awards recognize your unsung heroes, the folks out there doing the grunt work and doing great things every day," said F. Gavin MacAloon, AFA chapter president.

This year, the AFA honored 26 members of the ANG staff for their leadership contributions and dedication to the overall success of the ANG and Air Force mission. The awardees were nominated for exceptional performance across a broad range of specialties including, personnel and manpower, intelligence, operations, logistics, plans and requirements, communications, installations and mission support, financial management, safety, medical services and human resources.

"I am really proud of the people who support the Air Force mission in the Air National Guard," said Lt. Gen. Stanley E. Clarke III, director of the ANG. "These are the best of the people who are doing the mission day in and day out."

Gen. Clarke went on to describe the important role the ANG staff plays in ensuring ANG units are combat ready by providing a critical channel of communication between the National Guard Bureau, the 54 states and territories, and the Air Force.

"When you talk about global power, reach, and vigilance, when you talk about nuclear and cyber, we are involved with all of it," said Clarke. "What that means to a staff like the Air National Guard is you are involved with everything at a MAJCOM level, a national level, state level and unit level. It's all tied together, and all of you on the staff have to pull this together every day to make it happen. There is not a single program or activity the Air Force is engaged in that we're not engaged in somehow."

The ANG is a great organization, Clarke added, and the opportunity to recognize our superior performers is integral to our continued success. Support from partners like the AFA helps strengthen the resiliency of the Total Force, he said.

The AFA is a non-profit, independent, professional military and aerospace education association that promotes a dominant Air Force and a strong national defense, and honors Airmen and Air Force heritage.