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130th Airlift Wing Recognizes Airmen of the Year


The 130th Airlift Wing honored its top performers during an annual awards celebration held March 4, 2018, at McLaughlin Air National Guard Base, Charleston, West Virginia.

This year’s winners were selected from various squadrons across the base, highlighting their units’ sharpest and most exemplary airmen. The awards presented were: Airman of the Year, Non-Commissioned Officer (NCO) of the Year, Senior Non-Commissioned Officer (SNCO) of the Year, and First Sergeant of the Year. 

The winners of the four categories were as follows:

Airman: Senior Airman James Caudill, 130th Aerospace Maintenance Squadron

 Senior Airman Caudill deployed in support of an Air Expeditionary Force rotation to Southwest Asia, while completing his 5-level career development courses in just two months. He is also a member of the 130th Junior Enlisted Council, and well as a volunteer EMT/firefighter for the local community.

 NCO: Staff Sgt. Shawn Stewart, 130th Security Forces Squadron

 Staff Sgt. Stewart was appointed his unit safety representative which assisted with Security Forces being awarded the 2017 Wing Safety Award. Stewart was further tasked with the role as the primary Risk Management Instructor/Advisor for his section, and volunteered as a coach for various sports teams in the local community. Stewart additionally completed his Community College of the Air Force degree in 2017.

 SNCO: Senior Master Sgt. Shannon Bowling, 130th Security Forces Squadron

 Senior Master Sgt. Bowling deployed in support of Operation Freedom Sentinel while earning the Security Forces Small Unit of the Year award. He also won the Security Forces SNCO of the Year Award and he created Security Forces Airmen’s Council to address quality-of-life issues.

 First Sergeant: Senior Master Sgt. Jason Lopez, 130th Airlift Wing

 Senior Master Sgt. Lopez has served as both Wing and Operations Group First Sergeant and he is currently Vice President of the 130 Airlift Wing First Sergeants’ Council. He has volunteered as part of the W.Va. JROTC Drill competition and he completed CCAF degree in 2017.

Col. Johnny Ryan, 130th Airlift Wing commander, presented awards to the winners and praised their performances saying, “Here at the 130th, we have some of the hardest-working Airmen in the Air National Guard. I would like to congratulate all of our award winners and encourage them to continue to set the example of all of us.”

Additionally, he thanked the supervisors and commanders who made it a point to recognize the hard work and dedication to the mission by these individuals.

The Outstanding Airman of the Year promotes professional development, innovation, and mission success by recognizing those who excel in their carrier fields while fostering the cultivation of ready, responsive, and highly-skilled Airman.

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