419th reservists earn top honors

Wednesday , July 21, 2010 - 3:19 PM

- 419th Fighter Wing Public Affairs Staff

Three Airmen from the 419th Force Support Squadron have won Air Force-level awards for excellence in their career fields for 2009.

Education and Training Senior Noncommissioned Officer of the Year: Master Sgt. Marites Ramoneda-Thomas, chief of 419th Education and Training, briefed more than 200 Airmen in a proactive push for the Post-9/11 GI Bill. She successfully managed the Community College of the Air Force program, which included 67 graduates and 70 degrees in the wing -- the highest rate in Air Force Reserve Command. She allocated $200,000 in tuition assistance to 94 members. She revitalized several programs, including the Leadership Development Course and Hill Air Force Base's first Senior Noncommissioned Officer LDC. Ramoneda-Thomas also earned her bachelor's degree with a 3.8 cumulative GPA.

Personnel Senior Noncommissioned Officer of the Year: In 2009, Master Sgt. Richard Keele, chief of Personnel Systems Management, deployed for the third time in three years. As NCOIC PERSCO team member at Manas Air Base, Kyrgyzstan, he provided 100 percent accountability for transient base operations. He expertly managed PSM, Personnel Readiness, and Customer Service, during 50 percent manning. He was handpicked by Pentagon staff to provide expertise on mobilization of reservists, and 65 percent of his inputs were included in the final plan. Keele also earned his bachelor's degree with a 3.3 cumulative GPA and earned two CCAF degrees.

Personnel Noncommissioned Officer of the Year: Staff Sgt. Rachel Berry, chief of Readiness, was the wing's No. 1 choice to deploy as a PERSCO team member, and provided 100 percent accountability for transient base operations while deployed to Manas AB. While deployed, she helped process 12,000 arrivals and 1,500 redeployments. She tirelessly validated and streamlined nearly 1,000 personnel files in two systems, processed 200 awards and decorations, and finalized 500 evaluations. Berry also earned her Masters of Business Administration degree with a cumulative 3.5 GPA.

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