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Commander unveils new patriot award

McGHEE TYSON AIR NATIONAL GUARD BASE, Tenn. -- Col. Richard B. Howard, commander of The I.G. Brown Air National Guard Training and Education Center, presents the Patriot Award to Master Sgt. Kurt Skoglund, photographer, during commander's call at Spruance Hall, June 11, 2010.  (U.S. Air Force photo by Master Sgt. Mavi Smith/Released)

McGHEE TYSON AIR NATIONAL GUARD BASE, Tenn. -- Col. Richard B. Howard presents the Patriot Award to Master Sgt. Kurt Skoglund, TEC photographer, during commander's call at Spruance Hall, June 11, 2010. (U.S. Air Force photo by Master Sgt. Mavi Smith/Released)

McGHEE TYSON AIR NATIONAL GUARD BASE, Tenn. -- Determined to recognize excellence in the everyday accomplishments of his staff, the commander of The I.G. Brown Air National Guard Training and Education Center presented his first Patriot Award during commander's call at Spruance Hall, June 11.

A commander has many ways to recognize people, there are federal awards, quarterly awards, and even time-off awards, but Col. Richard B. Howard wanted to do something different.

"Those are exciting programs," said Howard. "But I wanted something that I could say, very strongly and publicly, 'thanks for your service, we know you do over and above.'"

"It's a personal award," Howard added. "That I'll be able to use to recognize someone in front of their peers for the service they are doing."

While Howard said he wishes he could give everyone a Patriot Award, he presented the first one to Master Sgt. Kurt Skoglund, TEC photographer, for his accomplishments and commitment to the mission of the center.

The 8x8 inch award includes two of Howard's coins mounted in a frame showing each side of the coin and is presented for 'dedication and service by going above and beyond'.