The Yongsan community can rightfully be proud. For the second time in two years, we've been selected as finalists in the Army Communities of Excellence competition.

In May, I stood on a Pentagon stage with Army Vice Chief of Staff Gen. Richard Cody to receive a third place ACOE trophy and a check for $750,000.

To be honest, we don't expect to have that money until next spring, so we're still considering how to spend the winnings. My intent is to reinvest that money in quality of life programs.

Regardless, the Garrison continues to improve quality of life. We're moving forward with a plan to create a Yongsan family park complete with picnic areas and walking paths. We're continuing with our barracks and quarters renovation projects. We're going to build a place where residents can meet and run their dogs in a fenced off area. Also, our expanded parking projects have brought hundreds of additional parking slots across the Garrison.

Our vision is to be a professional, people-focused organization setting the benchmark for installation management and quality of life programs that ensure the well-being of the community.

Your feedback is vital. We need to hear from you. Please take a moment to stop by the Garrison web site and click on Commander's Hotline and ICE. I guarantee you, I will read your message. Members of my staff will also read your message. You have a voice, and we're listening.

USAG-Yongsan is a vibrant community with lots of events, organizations and activities. As a community, we have processes in place to ensure we provide you with a quality of life commensurate with your service.

This is part of the Army Family Covenant we signed in December 2007. I promise you, it is not a document we signed and forgot. We use the Covenant as a road map for installation management every day.

We are committed to providing you with a strong, supportive environment where you can thrive. The Army Communities of Excellence competition is another opportunity to show you how we take care of our community members. Our motto is, "Here for You!"

Congratulations on making it to the ACOE finals once again. You are truly the reason USAG-Yongsan is a great place to live, work and play.