BATTLE CREEK, Michigan – The 110th Wing recognized its top performers during a year of excellence at a ceremony held Dec. 7, 2019 at Battle Creek Air National Guard Base, Michigan. Wing Commander Col. Shawn Holtz commended Airmen who went above and beyond their job descriptions with awards such as Company Grade Officer of the Year, Senior Non-Commissioned Officer of the Year, Non-Commissioned Officer of the Year, Airman of the Year, First Sergeant of the Year, and Honor Guard Member of the Year.
Staff Sgt. Courtney Michaels was named Airman of the Year for her performance while assigned to the 217th Air Operations Group. She provided expert Intelligence support to United States Air Forces Europe during several joint exercises, strengthening critical partnerships. Through her mastery of three collection management systems and the generating of six standard operating procedures, she managed to decrease production times by 30 percent. Additionally, Michaels volunteered 140 hours this year to the Salvation Army by coordinating a clothing drive.
Capt. Nicole Pavone from the 110th Operations Group was awarded Company Grade Officer of the Year. As a senior Intelligence Officer, she is in charge of more than 200 individuals between the 110th’s MQ-9 program and 110th Cyber Operations Squadron, as well as seven mission-critical programs. She is the primary point of contact for six Major Command Initiatives with a budget of nearly $200,000. She also is proactive and passionate in combatting sexual assault, devoting more than 300 hours to sexual assault awareness and response procedures.
Staff Sgt. Bianca Loucks, assigned to the 110th Mission Support Group, was awarded Non-Commissioned Officer of the Year. As a Material Management Craftsman, she showed tremendous leadership by procuring seven vital mission capability parts and secured 22 items for the MQ-9 block upgrade, facilitating 278 critical sorties. During the recent capstone inspection, she was coined by the Air Combat Command Inspector General inspection team for Superior Performance. Additionally, Loucks is an active participant in the Big Brother/Big sisters program, providing much-needed mentorship for at-risk children.
Master Sgt. Ronald Tyrl was awarded First Sergeant of the Year from the 110th Operations Group. Tyrl demonstrates superior leadership and performance as the First Sergeant by providing guidance and mentorship to 320 assigned personnel. His actions led to a mission readiness status of 100% for the 110th Operations Group. In 2019, he managed six critical programs leading to a marked increase in overall assurance and compliance. Tyrl also takes an active role in his community, involving himself in several groups that honor veterans, to include “Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War,” "New Orleans WWII National Museum,” and the “Jackson County Veterans Council.”
The title of Senior Non-Commission Officer of the Year was awarded to Master Sgt. Kristal Avila from the 110th Medical Group. Avila showed outstanding initiative by developing a tracking mechanism to effectively manage waivers and duty limiting codes, resulting in an 80% decrease in expired waivers, and strengthening mission capability by 10%. By creating a system of disseminating information on medical documentation requirements, she improved overall Wing compliance by 40%. Additionally, during the recent capstone inspection, Avila was coined by Air Combat Command Inspector General Team and recognized for superior performance
The 110th’s 2019 Outstanding Wing Honor Guard member of the year is Staff Sgt. Angelina Cardella. Assigned to the 110th Wing Comptroller Flight, Cardella works as a Military and Travel Pay Technician. Outside of her full-time job, she volunteers as part of the Base Honor Guard. Last year alone she expertly executed 22 Military Funeral Honors and Colors events in the Battle Creek community. She was also handpicked by team leadership to be the team’s training Non-Commissioned Officer In Charge.
From the 110th's home station, members provide warfighter support 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. In total, during 2019, 792 members were mobilized or deployed. 364 members supported AEF requirements and 76 members supported our global partnerships via the State Partnership Program. In addition, 106 members supported exercises around the globe in 18 locations executing 1840 days. The men and women of the 110th Wing continue to set the benchmark for success both at home station and worldwide.