We hosted our 19th Annual Breakfast of Champions at the 2021 Space and Missile Defense Symposium in Huntsville, Alabama on Wednesday. The conference is the centerpiece of the world for Missile Defense, and it is the first time all 4,500 of us came together for the first time in two years. We commend the outstanding leadership of the Space and Missile Defense Command’s (SMDC) Lieutenant General Dan Karbler and his command along with the Huntsville Community, and Huntsville Mayor Tommy Battle, for the courage and safety to make the symposium happen this year.
Our Alabama Champion tradition began in 2003 with Lieutenant General Larry Dodgen) the Commander of the U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command, as the community surged to support his leadership with a National Security Presidential Directive NSPD-23 on December 16th, 2002, by President George W. Bush, to operationally deploy the GMD system in Fort Greely, Alaska, by September 30th, 2004. This remains a historic and remarkable achievement.
Putting people first and their resilience to lead excellence in their missions during one of the most challenging periods for the nation. We are very honored to bring these great Champions that bonded teams, overcome challenges, and win in achieving national security objectives in missile defense. Despite the challenges inhibiting the mobility of the nation’s missile defense team to come together, our leaders persevered, got the job done, and came together to achieve conquering adversity.
We were honored to have Nation’s Missile Defense champions in attendance in recognizing and putting their warfighters first: General John Hyten, Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Jim Dickinson, Commander of the United States Space Command, Vice Admiral Jon Hill, Director of the Missile Defense Agency, Lieutenant General Dan Karbler, Commander of the United States Army Space and Missile Defense Command, Lieutenant General Neil Thurgood, Director for Hypersonics, Directed Energy, Space, and Rapid Acquisition, Brigadier General Frank Rice, Deputy Commanding General of the 263rd Army Air Missile Defense Command, Brigadier General Dave Stewart, Commanding General of the 32nd Army Air and Missile Defense Command, and Huntsville Mayor Tommy Battle. Their presence amplified the value of those recognized as our Alabama champions from SMDC and our Alabama community.
The presenters for the event were Lieutenant General Dan Karbler, Commander of USASMDC, Vice Admiral John Hill, Director of the Missile Defense Agency, and Riki Ellison, Founder, and Chairman of the Missile Defense Advocacy Alliance.
The 2021 Huntsville Breakfast of Champions Recipients:
CPT Skye Robinson, 100th Missile Defense Brigade
SSG Alberto “Galicia” Galiciafeliciano, 100th Missile Defense Brigade
SSG William J. Watson, 1st Space Brigade
CPL Ryan S. Starcher, 1st Space Brigade
Mr. Noe Caro, SMDC Technical Center
SGT George Crooks, SMD Center of Excellence
PV2 Demonte Edwards, SMD Center of Excellence
J5 Allied Integration Team, Joint Functional Component Command for Integrated Missile Defense
Dr. Mitch Stevison, Vice President of Strategy, Raytheon
Cindy Gruensfelder, Vice President and General Manager of MWS Branch, Boeing
Jon Rambeau, Vice President and General Manager of IWSS Branch, Lockheed Martin
Clay Davis, Director and General Manager, ASRC Federal
Bruce Barnhill, Program Director, General Atomics
Pete Muller, Vice President for U.S. Operations, Weibel
Michael Roesch, Executive Vice President, IERUS
Champions associate with Champions to win!
War Eagle, and Roll Tide!