Ambassador Kevin Whitaker, U.S. Ambassador to Columbia, recently recognized Astrid Pardo and Rosalba Mateus, contracting professionals from the US Army's Regional Contracting Office in Bogotá, Colombia with prestigious Mission Honor Awards.

Whitaker personally presented the certificates along with a monetary award to each individual. The highly competitive individual award recognizes only those individuals that have provided superior performance and made significant contributions to the United States Embassy mission in Colombia.

Astrid and Rosalba make up the one-two-punch for acquisition support to the Department of Defense Joint Force team. Among their many achievements: these two contracting professionals procured medical supplies and preventative health service contracts in remote Zika-stricken villages on very short notice; they have rejuvenated a precise mechanism to solicit and award leases of light armored vehicles to maintain compliance with very important force protection measures; and supported the development of bare base operations by contracting for facility improvements, pier repairs, and clearing training grounds for the continuing fight against transnational criminal organizations.

With their knowledge of the Colombian commercial environment and superior business acumen, even in the most remote Amazonian regions of Colombia, Pardo and Mateus are key advisors to the Office of Security Cooperation, Special Operations Forces in Colombia, and internally to the 410th Contracting Support Brigade staff. The two contracting specialists set the pace and standard for work ethic with over 350 contract actions and $13 million in supply, service, and minor construction requirements between them.