19:58 PM

Colo. Lt. Col., Minn. Cadet Head National Awards List

Civil Air Patrol recognized its top performers tonight in an online awards ceremony capping the organization’s first ever virtual conference, honoring 28 members, one region, two wings and one squadron for accomplishments during 2019.

The award recipients represented 19 wings and all eight regions.

A longtime member of the Colorado Wing, Lt. Col. Michael T. McNeely of the Colorado Springs Cadet Squadron, and an achievement-oriented Minnesota Wing cadet, Cadet Col. Iva Hammitt of the Anoka County Composite Squadron, are the top honorees as Senior Member of the Year and Cadet of the Year, respectively.

McNeely, a CAP member since 1996, is the Colorado Springs squadron’s deputy commander after twice serving as commander. During his tenure the squadron has received the Quality Cadet Unit Award 10 straight years

Before joining the Colorado Wing, McNeely served in leadership positions at numerous squadrons across CAP. As an active-duty U.S. Air Force officer, he has served in the Virginia, Wyoming, Rhode Island and California wings.

His contributions to CAP’s aerospace education mission have had a nationwide impact. He originated and authored the National Aerospace Education Program Satellite Tool Kit (STK) Program, and he has worked countless hours to design and implement the program to teach cadets about satellites and their orbits, missions, locations and the solar system. This work helped earn him the national Frank Brewer Memorial Aerospace Education Award in the Individual Category in 2001.

 McNeely is a Ground Team Leader, Ground Team Member 3 and has been an Urban Direction Finding Team member for over 22 years. He has served as the activity director of the Advanced Technologies Academy for 15 years and has also attended 17 cadet encampments, serving in positions from training, advising and counseling officer to encampment commander.

Since joining CAP in 2015 Hammitt has served in several squadron positions from flight sergeant through cadet commander and executive officer.

She has attended four encampments and four Minnesota Leadership Academies; was on the National Cadet Competition team that placed fourth overall; staffed Cadet Competition at the wing and region levels;- and serves as the North Central Region representative on- the National Cadet Advisory Council. She is also the Ubuntu expert on the CyberPatriot team and is Ground Team Member 1 qualified.

Hammitt earned CAP’s top cadet honor, the Gen. Carl A. Spaatz Award, in 2019. She also participated in the 2019 Civic Leadership Academy in Washington, D.C., as well as the Rocky Mountain Region Cadet Leadership School in Colorado Springs.

She took Advanced Placement and community college-level courses and graduated from high school with an associate’s degree from Anoka Ramsey Community College. She was on the Honor Roll every semester, and in 2015 she earned the Girl Scout Silver Award.

Hammitt also volunteers up to 50 hours to non-CAP activities a year, in addition to participating in choir, the student council, the National Honor Society, drama, track and field, Nordic skiing and cross country and serving as a peer tutor, all while maintaining a 4.378 grade-point average.

In addition to McNeely and Hammitt, awards went to:

Aerospace Education Teacher of the Year
Lt. Col. James D. Peace
East Houston Cadet SquadronTexas Wing

Squadron of Distinction/F. Ward Reilly Leadership Award
Apollo Composite Squadron
Maj. James R. Glombowski, Commander
Texas Wing

AFNORTH Commander’s Award
West Virginia Wing

 Air Force Sergeants Association Cadet NCO of the Year
Cadet Chief Master Sgt. Dean M. Courtney II
Andrews Composite Squadron
National Capital Wing

Frank Brewer Memorial Aerospace Award, Cadet Category
Cadet Capt. Liam J. Hood
Maj. Kevin A. Adams Memorial Composite Squadron
Michigan Wing

Frank Brewer Memorial Aerospace Award, Senior Member Category
Capt. James O. Clonts
Peachtree City Falcon Field Composite Squadron
Georgia Wing

Frank G. Brewer Memorial Aerospace Award, Individual/Organization 
Branson Airport
Missouri Wing

Director of Finance of the Year
First Lt. Terrance M. Aldridge
Alaska Wing

Communicator of the Year
Maj. Brian P. Foltz
Heart of the Rockies Composite Squadron
Colorado Wing

Squadron Chaplain of the Year
Chaplain, Col. Kenneth W. Parris
East Bay Cadet Squadron 18
California Wing

Senior Chaplain of the Year 
Chaplain, Lt. Col. Robert W. Harris
Nemet-Ryan Composite Squadron
California Wing

Character Development Officer of the Year
Capt. Christel M. Houston
Steamboat Springs Composite Squadron
Colorado Wing

Col. Dion DeCamp Ground Team of the Year
Southern Kentucky Cadet Squadron
Kentucky Wing

Counterdrug Officer of the Year
Maj. James R. Redmon
Fallbrook Senior Squadron
California Wing

Maj. Gen. Jeanne M. Holm Aerospace Education Officer of the Year
First Lt. Lynda S. MacPherson
Alaska Wing

Col. Edwin W. Lewis Jr. Incident Staff Member of the Year
Lt. Col. Christoffer Trossen
156 WISTAC FlightWisconsin Wing

Historian of the Year
Maj. Karla K. West
South Dakota Wing

Inspector General of the Year
Lt. Col. Bruce L. Roy
Connecticut Wing

Col. David Kantor Operations Staff Officer of the Year
Lt. Col. Aaron E. Oliver
Oklahoma Wing

Col. Robert V. (Bud) Payton Public Affairs Officer of the Year
Capt. Margot A. Myers
Arizona Wing

Professional Development Officer of the Year
Maj. Kristen S. Santos
Bethesda-Chevy Chase Composite Squadron
Maryland Wing

Property Manager of the Year
Maj. Eric S. Milles
Kentucky Wing

Lt. Col. Keith Riddle Aircrew Member of the Year
Maj. Ronald W. Yoscak
New Castle Senior Squadron
Delaware Wing

Safety Officer of the Year
Capt. Bruce M. Clayton
Central Alabama Senior Squadron
Alabama Wing

John V. “Jack” Sorenson Cadet Programs Officer of the Year
Master Sgt. Kristopher C. Matthews
Scott Composite Squadron
Illinois Wing

George Texido Legislative Officer Of the Year
Lt. Col. Andrew Liput
Connecticut Wing

Paul. W. Turner Safety Award
Arizona Wing 

Maj. Gen. Dwight H. Wheless Legal Officer of the Year
Lt. Col. Stephen L. Tupper
Great Lakes Region