ANCHORAGE, AK, May 15, 2014 /24-7PressRelease/
-- The Missile Defense Advocacy Alliance (MDAA), www.missiledefenseadvocacy.org
, held its first annual Alaska Missile Defender of the Year Award Ceremony in Anchorage, Alaska on Saturday, May 10, honoring those members of the Alaska Army and Air National Guard who operate the U.S. Ground Based Midcourse System.
The top award presented was the first ever Ted Stevens Memorial Award for missile defense, in honor of Fmr. Senator Ted Stevens of Alaska, a fierce champion for national missile defense.
The Winner of the Ted Stevens Memorial Award is:
Captain Eric E. Kraus
Senior Tactical Director, 49th Missile Defense Battalion
Alaska Army National Guard
The Winners of the Missile Defender of the Year for the Alaska Air National Guard are:
Captain Erik J. Haugen
Flight Chief, Operational Support Flight, 213th SWS
Technical Sergeant Brian C. Rowbotham
Crew Chief, Missile Warning Operations Center, 213th SWS
The Winners of the Missile Defender of the Year Award for Best Crew are:
Bravo Battery, 49th Missile Defense Battalion
Captain Ryan Richard
Senior Tactical Director
Captain Jason Brewer
Tactical Battle Analyst
Chief Warrant Officer 3 Jacob Moore
Headquarters and Headquarters Battery
Staff Sergeant Derrick Holmes
Engagement Control Team Leader
Sergeant John C. Sorrells
Engagement Control Shift Leader
The event celebrated the contributions to national missile defense by Alaska Senator Ted Stevens. MDAA Chairman Riki Ellison once commended Sen. Stevens for having the "vision and leadership to deploy those systems in the most advantageous and strategic location and to drive political will to have an operational system in place within four years after our Congress and President made the decision." During his remarks at the ceremony, Ellison said "He was an Alaskan to the core, and was very proud of what are were doing up there. He never lost sight of the soldiers and families serving up there." The Ted Stevens Award was presented by Congressman Don Young (R-AK)
Distinguished guests and presenters included Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) Alaska Lieutenant Governor Mead Treadwell, Commander of the Alaska Air National Guard Brigadier General Timothy. The commander of the Alaska Army National Guard, Brigadier General Leon M. Bridges.
The Ground Based Midcourse System is North America's only line of defense against incoming ballistic missile threats. Fort Greely, Alaska is home to 27 of the 30 Ground Based Interceptors currently deployed.
"No matter what they say about the system or about the testing," Ellison told the ceremony attendees, "we know how much confidence we have in you and this system that has deterred our nation's adversaries from striking the United States."
Riki Ellison is available for interviews.
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