Air Force receives DOD-level award

Donna Miles
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Air Forces in Europe communications and information directorate, which oversees the Air Force’s communications and information-management effort in the European theater, was given top honors in the chief information officer awards team category Oct. 7.

Defense Department officials honored their top information and knowledge workers for important contributions to the department’s transformation efforts that officials said are improving operations, saving money and, in many cases, saving lives on the battlefield.
Linton Wells II, acting assistant secretary of defense for network and information integration, presented this year’s awards during the DOD Chief Information Officer Executive Board meeting at the Pentagon. Mr. Wells is also the department’s chief information officer.

Actions that earned the top team award included upgrading land-mobile radios throughout the command more than four years ahead of DOD’s encryption-compliance deadline and leading the Air Force in transforming to the new Defense Messaging System in a combat environment. The directorate is also credited with improving interface and decreasing air-tasking processing time using command-and-control improvements, and demonstrating its ability to thwart hacking attempts during a three-day exercise.

The competition has grown increasingly competitive since the first awards ceremony in 2001, officials said. Winners were selected from about 80 nominations from commands worldwide.