Anchorage – May 18, 2015 — The Missile Defense Advocacy Alliance (MDAA), www.missiledefenseadvocacy.org, held its second annual Alaska Missile Defender of the Year Award Ceremony in Anchorage, Alaska on Saturday, May 16, 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 Ted Stevens Memorial Award for missile defense, in honor of Senator Ted Stevens of Alaska, a champion for national missile defense.
Captain Eric L. Vantrease
Chief Standardization and Evaluation Officer, 213th Space Warning Squadron
Alaska Air National Guard
Master Sergeant Thomas E. Wright II
Assistant Operation Superintendent, 13th/23th Space Wing Squadron
Alaska Air National Guard
The Winners of the 2015 Missile Defender of the Year of the Alaska Air National Guard are:
First Lieutenant Micah Hanauer
Crew Commander, Missile Warning Operations Center, 213th SWS
Technical Sergeant Brian C. Rowbotham
Crew Chief, Missile Warning Operations Center, 213th SWS
The Winners of the 2015 Missile Defender of the Year Award for Best Crew are:
Alpha Crew, 49th Missile Defense Battalion, Alaska Army National Guard
Major Jeremy Shepherd
Senior Tactical Director
Captain Gilberto Ortiz
Battle Analyst/Deputy Director
First Lieutenant Cody J. Hennelly
Staff Sergeant Michael Diachenko
Engagement Control Team Leader
Sergeant Josef R. Carstens
Distinguished guests and presenters included U.S. Senator Dan Sullivan (R-AK); Missile Defense Agency Director Vice Admiral James Syring; Commander of U.S. Alaska Command, Lieutenant General Russell Handy; Assistant Adjutant General of the Alaska Army National Guard Colonel Joseph Streff; Commander of the 213th Space Warning Squadron Lieutenant Colonel John Oberist; and the publisher of the Anchorage Daily News and Alaska Dispatch, Ms. Alice Rogoff.
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.
MDAA’s mission is to make the world safer by advocating for the development and deployment of missile defense systems to defend the United States, its armed forces and its allies against missile threats.
MDAA is the only organization in existence whose primary mission is to educate the American public about missile defense issues and to recruit, organize, and mobilize proponents to advocate for the critical need of missile defense. We are a non-partisan membership-based and membership-funded organization that does not advocate on behalf of any specific system, technology, architecture or entity.