By Sgt. Sara Wood, USA
American Forces Press Service
May 4, 2007 – The top installations from each of the military services and the Defense Logistics Agency were lauded today at the Pentagon for their superior mission support. Deputy Defense Secretary Gordon England presented the Commander in Chief's Annual Awards for Installation Excellence, highlighting the facilities' superior performance at a time when the nation faces a worldwide strategic threat from terrorism.
"This is an especially critical time for the country, and it is a time like this that requires great leadership," England said at a ceremony honoring the recipients. "It requires great leadership starting with the president of the United States and the secretary of defense and all the great people that we have in the Pentagon, but it takes leadership throughout the organization. It takes leadership at every single level of our organization and every single place in our organization."
This year's awardees were U.S. Army Garrison Japan, at Camp Zama, Japan; Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center Twentynine Palms, Calif.; Naval Submarine Base Kings Bay, Ga.; Mountain Home Air Force Base, Idaho; and Defense Supply Center Columbus, Ohio.
This was the first year that the four military installations received the award. The Defense Supply Center Columbus, however, has received the honor five times over the years. Each installation was chosen for its exemplary support of Defense Department missions and for providing excellent working, housing and recreational conditions.
England emphasized that the award is not just recognizing the leadership, but also the people who make the installations function every day. "Any time you have an opportunity to say thanks to people for a job that's extraordinarily well done, it's an opportunity you never pass up, because at the end of the day, that's what this organization's all about," he said. "It's about joint civilian-military teams; it's that teamwork behind the lines that allows our people to do their jobs at the front lines."
President Ronald Reagan created the Commander in Chief's Annual Award for Installation Excellence in 1985. The Defense Logistics Agency was added to the competition in 1988. Recipient installations receive a trophy, an "Installation Excellence" flag, and a letter signed by President Bush.
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