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Kadena Team Captures O'Malley Award

Date Posted: 1998-05-24

Dynamic leadership and devotion to people has led to the selection of the 18th Wing Commander at Kadena AB, Japan, and his wife as the 1998 General and Mrs. Jerome F. O'Malley Award winners.

The Air Force selected Brig. Gen. John R. Baker and his wife, Judith, for the award presented annually by the Air Force Chief of Staff to recognize the best wing commander and spouse team in the service.

"The Bakers are the epitome of 'team' leadership," said officials at the Air Force Personnel Center here.

"This award recognizes the many unnamed active duty and family member volunteers who through their time, talent and energy have made major contributions to our quality of life on Kadena," said Baker.

"From neighborhoods helping refurbish playground equipment, to creating and manning the Golden Legacy Museum during last year's Americafest, the Kadena community has made our philosophy of 'make Kadena a better place to work, live, and play' come alive. Not only have on-base contributions been made, but many projects and events have been accomplished in local communities, such as cleaning up the Sunabe Seawall, supporting the Okinawa Marathon and 'adopting' nursing homes and orphanages."

"Kadena Team members are also actively learning about and participating in local cultural races. We have also been very proud of all the efforts Kadena residents make in support of our schools, including Project Graduation. Kadena is a better place for all of us because of each member of the Kadena team. Judi and I are very proud to be part of this community," Baker said.

"The wing has worked very hard with deployments (about 500 people are deployed right now as you read this), to include numerous higher headquarters inspections - the highlight being a well-deserved excellent rating on our April Initial Readiness Response Inspection/Combat Employment Readiness Inspection. Furthermore, just the day-to-day requirements of meeting our wing's mission in a dynamic overseas environment continually impresses me," Baker said.

"The peace and stability in this region is a direct result of our presence. I am proud of your efforts and accept this award on behalf of the Kadena Team."

Gen. Michael Ryan, Air Force Chief of Staff, will conduct the presentation ceremony in the near future in Washington, D.C.

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