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Airman of the Year

Senior Airman Ryan H. Megredy won for the Airman of the Year category.

Senior Airman Ryan H. Megredy won for the Airman of the Year category.

Staff Sgt. Brian E. Bender won for the Non-Commissioned Officer of the Year category.

Staff Sgt. Brian E. Bender won for the Non-Commissioned Officer of the Year category.

Master Sgt. William O. Forkgen won for the Senior Non-Commissioned Officer category.

Master Sgt. William O. Forkgen won for the Senior Non-Commissioned Officer category.

Master Sgt. George F. Moorehead III won for the First Sergeant of the Year category.

Master Sgt. George F. Moorehead III won for the First Sergeant of the Year category.

Master Sgt. Doris C. Nielsen won for the Honor Guard Member of the Year category.

Master Sgt. Doris C. Nielsen won for the Honor Guard Member of the Year category.

BALTIMORE -- The 175th Wing held its first Airman Recognition Ceremony in December. This annual event recognizes not only the winners of the Airman of the Year but also Community College of the Air Force graduates and other outstanding achievements by Airman during the year. 

Brig. Gen. James A. Adkins, the Adjutant General, Maryland National Guard, emphasized the accomplishments of more than 75 airmen in different accomplishments. "These accomplishments are a sense of pride for these airmen." 

Thirty-five airmen received their Community College of the Air Force diplomas.
The following are the winners in their respective categories. In addition to their background information all were asked why they thought they won. 

Outstanding Airman of the Year
Senior Airman Ryan H. Megredy
175th Security Forces Squadron
Security Forces Journeyman
Ellicott City, Howard County, Maryland
4 years of service, all guard
"I deployed to Baghdad, Iraq, I got back in March. Our NCOIC in charge of our TASS (tactical automatic security system) system went home on emergency leave. I made some improvements to that system that enhanced our security."

Outstanding Noncommissioned Officer of the Year
Staff Sergeant Brain E. Bender
175th Security Forces Squadron
Security Forces Journeyman
5 ½ years of service, all guard
"I think it is the culmination of military service, volunteering at the civilian level and furthering my education and other programs made available to me by the Maryland Air National Guard. "
He volunteered with his college fraternity to raise money for the Muscular Dystrophy Association, at Saint Celements Church of Rosedale, and with running events, including: Crossroads at 95 5K and the Baltimore marathon.

Senior Noncommissioned Officer of the Year
Master Sergeant William O. Forkgen
175th Medical Group
Bioenvironmental Engineer Craftsman
Pasadena, Anne Arundel County, MD
24 years of service, first eight were on active duty
"I think it would have to be the values that I have learned growing up, meaning family and then from the military. I try to apply those values to anything and everything I do. That has pushed me over the edge."

First Sergeant of the Year
Master Sergeant George F. Moorehead III
175th Small Air Terminal
First Sergeant
Westminster, Carol County, MD
24 years of service, since 1988 Maryland Air National Guard
"How I carry myself, the way I treat my members and paying it forward. Someone got me here and I have to pay it back. I deploy a lot as a first sergeant. I volunteer for missions. I am leaving again at the end of December to deploy to the Middle East."

Honor Guard Member of the Year
Master Sergeant Doris C. Nielsen
175th Services Flight
Dining Hall Manager
Rising Sun, Cecil County, Maryland
25 years of service (6 years active duty, 19 Maryland Air National Guard)
MPA days for Honor Guard Manager
"I am dedicated to coordinating military funeral honors so that all Maryland veterans are given professional and dignified honors for the service that they have provided to our country."