2nd Medical Group recognized by Air Force
BARKSDALE AIR FORCE BASE — Once again, Airmen from the 2nd Medical Group were recognized at the Air Force level as outstanding performers in their fields.
Maj. Karen Nzerem, 2nd Aerospace Medicine Squadron, and Tech. Sgt. Terrence Raybon, 2nd Medical Support Squadron, each won categories in the 2012 Air Force Medical Service Annual Award competition which announced its results Feb. 5.
"I am honored to be their commander," said Col. Paul Fortunato, 2 MDG commander. "It's the highest AF medical service award you can achieve."
These awards continue a trend of excellence in the Barksdale medical community, including two Purple Heart presentations and one Airman's selection as one of the AF 12 Outstanding Airmen of the Year.
"It's an amazing experience to command and lead these folks," said Fortunato. "We have an awesome staff here. I am in awe of how they work."
Nzerem and Raybon were the only Air Force Global Strike Command Airmen recognized in the awards, which are officiated by the Air Force Surgeon General's Medical Force Development Directorate.
Maj. Nzerem, Barksdale's primary Personnel Reliability Program competent medical authority, was named Outstanding PRP CMA of the Year. She distinguished herself and her team by eliminating a certification back log which consisted of hundreds of cases, and accurately maintains and reviews over 1,500 records.
A PRP technician and the clinic as a whole won at the major command level and competed at the Air Force level, with Nzerem going on to claim top honors in the AF-wide competition with the support of her team, she said.
"The team was very excited," she added. "We did very well."
With a mission as important and high-visibility as PRP, there isn't any room for mistakes or complacency.
"She has done a really superb job in managing the program," said Fortunato. "[The award] is well deserved for an individual at a highly visible, preeminent PRP base."
The PRP clinic isn't the only section of the medical community doing outstanding work.
Tech. Sgt. Raybon, core laboratory NCO in charge, was named USAF Laboratory NCO of the Year. According to his awards nomination, he led the busiest lab in AFGSC and oversaw the completion of 156,000 tests, servicing 68,000 TRICARE South customers.
"Tech. Sgt. Raybon is a very hard worker," said Senior Airman Tiffany Dickerson, 2 MDSS lab technician. "He is always willing to help out even when he is super busy."
For his team, it came as no surprise when he was selected for the award. He is a model Airman and always puts others before himself, Dickerson added.
Though he is extremely proud of the recognition, Fortunato pointed out these aren't the only people in the medical community doing great things.
"Our staff here is so mission driven and so patient driven, that's just their attitude and mentality," he said. "They are all superstars."