Airmen bring home AFSA awards|
Posted 5/9/2012 Updated 5/10/2012
by Tech. Sgt. Jennifer Foster
66th Air Base Group Public Affairs
5/9/2012 - HANSCOM AIR FORCE BASE, Mass. -- Two Airmen from Hanscom have been recognized by the Air Force Sergeants Association for their outstanding service.
Tech. Sgt. Renieka Pepper and Staff Sgt. JonCarlos Candelario were both recognized at the AFSA Division 1 level, which encompasses seven states and eight chapters in the northeast region.
Pepper, who works in the 66th Comptroller Squadron, was recognized as the Air Force Sergeants Association, Division 1, Non-Commissioned Officer of the Year for 2011.
Although Pepper is currently deployed, the effects of her hard work and dedication are still easy to see around the base. Her being a Community College of the Air Force graduate and mentor helped Hanscom achieve its "Best in Air Force Materiel Command" rating for CCAF graduates.
"Tech. Sgt. Pepper brings a strong leadership style to the table that is undeniable," said Master Sgt. JC Cross, Comptroller superintendent. "She believes in a 'do as I do' type leadership, as evidenced by her actions every day."
Pepper participated in multiple fundraisers, including an Alzheimer's Association event that raised more than $300,000. She was also part of a team that investigated fraudulent pay investigations and has received numerous quarterly and yearly awards.
"I couldn't be more proud of her accomplishments and admire the care she has for all of our Airmen," said Cross.
Candelario, also from the 66th Comptroller Squadron, was recognized as the Air Force Sergeants Association, Division 1, First-Term Airman of the Year for 2011.
"Being the membership officer for the local AFSA chapter, I feel I have a direct impact on how well AFSA is able to achieve its overall objective of keeping lawmakers informed on the needs of the military service members," Candelario said. "Because there is strength in numbers and the more members we are able to recruit and retain, the greater the impact our lobbyist will make on Capitol Hill."
In addition to AFSA's national agenda of championing enlisted issues to congress, AFSA local chapters support programs and events to enhance the community.
Candelario is actively involved with other professional organizations, including being the Patriot Enlisted Association secretary.
He also takes time to give back to the community as a Youth Sports program coach for baseball and soccer.
"Staff Sgt. Candelario has an engine that just won't quit," said Cross. "Without a doubt he is the most ambitious Airmen I have had the pleasure of working with."
The winners of the division awards will be invited to Jacksonville, Fla., in August for the AFSA International awards at the organization's convention.
According to their website, www.hqafsa.org, the Air Force Sergeants Association is a non-profit organization representing the professional and personal interests of 111,000 active duty and retired enlisted members of the United States Air Force, Air National Guard and Air Force Reserve.
AFSA works closely with the White House staff, Pentagon and Air Force officials across the globe to ensure enlisted members adhere to the preamble of "desire to assist in obtaining the highest caliber of men and women for our Air Force, our interest in the welfare of persons who served and are serving in the Air Force".
Membership is open to all current and former military personnel and their families.