By Patrick Young, Fort Stewart Public AffairsMay 11, 2012
FORT STEWART, Ga. - Fort Stewart-Hunter Army Airfield was presented the 2012 Army Communities of Excellence - Gold Award, May 1 and the Commander in Chief's Annual Award for Installation Excellence, May 2, in the Pentagon, for an unprecedented fifth time.
The awards recognized the installation as of one the Department of Defense unparalleled premier military installations.
According to the Army's ACOE program, the ACOE award is overseen by the Assistant Chief of Staff for Installation Management, and recognizes excellence in installation management. The judging criteria were based on concepts such as resource optimization, taking care of the environment, and a demonstrated commitment to the facility and service excellence.
The ACOE Award came with a prize of $500,000.
In addition, Fort Stewart was also recognized with an ACOE Sustained Excellence Award with a prize of $25,000 for their continued exceptional performance, especially in environmental stewardship.
Similarly, the CIC Annual Award for Installation Excellence program notes it recognizes installations at the Department of Defense level. It is where the command has best managed their resources to sustain the mission, increase productivity of the workforce and enhance the quality of life for its communities.
When it was time for Fort Stewart-Hunter Army Airfield to receive awards, a team led by the installation's Senior Commander, Third Infantry Division Commander, Maj. Gen. Robert "Abe" Abrams, and 3rd ID Command Sergeant Major, Command Sgt. Major Edd Watson, took the stage.
They were accompanied by the Fort Stewart-Hunter Army Airfield Garrison Command team of Col. Kevin Milton and Garrison Command Sergeant Major James Ervin; the Hunter Army Airfield Garrison Commander and Command Sergeant Major, Lt. Col. Edward Kovaleski, and Command Sgt. Maj. Stanley Hood; Directorate of Plans Analysis and Integration, Janet Blanks; and representing the installation's community partners, was Hinesville Mayor James Thomas.
A strong community showing was also made in the audience, as the award presentation was also attended by Liberty County Chairman John D. McIver, Liberty County Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Leah Poole; Hinesville City Manager Billy Edwards; and the Executive Director of Friends of Liberty and Fort Stewart, Paul Andreshak.
The representation of military, civilian and community members was a testament to words Maj. Gen. Robert "Abe" Abrams made in his acceptance speech, where he applauded the efforts of the total team - the Civilian workforce, tenant units, and community partners, working with inspired leadership at all levels. He said the awards were the results of a committed team striving for excellence, adding the effort was a journey, not a destination.
"Excellence begets excellence," Maj. Gen. Abrams said adding that the installation continued to raise the bar and shoot for higher goals, striving to be the best.
He noted that the secret to success was centered in teamwork.
"It takes a team effort to sustain an installation that is going to have this level of excellence," Maj. Gen. Abrams said. It is a great place for someone like me and Command Sgt. Watson to able to serve. It (Team Stewart) is genuine. It is sincere, and they do it every single day. And when no one worries about who gets the credit, great things can happen. And that is the environment that we are fortunate to live and work in."
In conclusion, Maj. Gen. Abrams thanked the efforts of Col. Kevin Milton, Command Sgt. Maj. Ervin, Lt. Col. Kovaleski; and Command Sgt. Maj. Hood for their efforts on behalf of the installation.