Deserving dad nominated for fatherhood award

Story and photo by Marissa-Ellen Patterson
86th Force Support Squadron marketing assistant

Tech. Sgt. Kevin Allen was recently nominated for the 2011 Military Fatherhood Award, an award sponsored by the National Fatherhood Initiative.

Sergeant Allen was nominated by Nancy Hoehn, Exceptional Family Member Program coordinator.

“I saw the nomination opportunity and immediately thought of Tech. Sgt. Allen,” Mrs. Hoehn said. “He makes many contributions to our community in spite of obstacles he faces.”

Sergeant Allen initiated a boys mentoring group with 10 boys, ages 7 to 16, from his church and squadron. The boys named the group, “Operation Improve our Swag,” and take an active role in planning activities. The group meets twice a month for fun activities and an educational program.

Sergeant Allen maintains a high deployment and TDY schedule, partners as a parent with his wife who works full time, and is the father of sons with very diverse abilities and needs.

All three of their sons have very different learning styles and personalities, as one son has been diagnosed with special needs, and another son has been recognized as gifted. Sergeant Allen meets their needs by focusing on them as unique individuals.

“Balancing military life and family life is a constant struggle,” Sergeant Allen said. “As a recruiter, I have learned that I have to literally schedule in meal time and family time, while working 12-hour days, seven days per week to meet my quota.”  
Being deployed five times since 2005 and going TDY two to four days per month doesn’t stop Sergeant Allen from helping coach basketball for two different age groups, accommodating his sons’ needs, or mentoring the Operation Improve Our Swag group.

He found that Skyping works better than calling while he is away, because there is no time limit, and he can read his sons’ body language. 

“Skyping comforts my family because they can see that I am safe,” Sergeant Allen said.

The National Fatherhood Initiative was founded in 1994 to confront the most consequential social problem of our time: widespread father absence in the lives of our nation’s children.

A special award was created to honor an outstanding military father for his commitment to his children and the family service staff who work tirelessly to support military families.

To find out more about the Military Fatherhood Award or to nominate a deserving father in the future, visit