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Workforce Initiatives > IA Excellence Award Recipient and Nominees

USAF International Affairs Excellence Award
2014 International Affairs Excellence Award

The International Affairs Excellence Award is presented annually for
outstanding and innovative contributions effective in building, sustaining,
expanding and guiding Air Force-to-partner relationships.

Secretary of the Air Force Deborah Lee James, Chief of Staff of the Air
Force Gen. Mark A. Welsh III and AFA Chairman of the Board Scott P. Van
Cleef presented the award to Capt. Kathleen Le, Senior Master Sgt. Eric
Gaona and Grisel Mundo-Love as part of opening ceremonies for the three-day
event. The senior civilian recipient, Matthew P. Giles, was deployed to
Afghanistan and could not accept the award in person.

Le is the 96th Test Group executive officer, stationed at Holloman Air Force
Base, New Mexico. According to her award citation, Le was responsible for
procuring training for the Afghanistan Army, Air Force and police, totaling
more than 2.1 billion dollars through the execution of 89 foreign military
sales cases. Her efforts fulfilled Afghanistan National Security Forces
training requirements and provided an enduring capability for the future

Gaona serves as the Inter-American Air Forces Academy superintendent at
Joint Base San Antonio, Texas. Gaona led 46 instructors, enabling the
delivery of 10,000 training hours to students from 21 partner nations. He
also enabled his team to execute the Department of State's first Afghanistan
Air Force A-29 aircraft maintenance training. Gaona's professionalism was
key to his selection as mentor for Colombian Air Force senior enlisted
leaders during the 21st Century Noncommissioned Officer event.

Giles has served as a civilian in the Defense Department for more than six
years. He was the Afghanistan, Pakistan, Central Asia branch chief, and
Afghanistan country director, Central Command divisions of the regional
directorate, deputy under secretary of the Air Force for international
affairs. Giles directed Afghan training and modernization efforts, laying
the foundation for future independent Afghan Air Force combat missions. His
monthly briefs to the secretary of the Air Force on the Afghan buildup,
training, and equipment were instrumental in shaping senior policy via his
trusted analysis. His leadership and broad regional expertise kept partner
acquisition strategies on track, ensuring U.S. government policies and
objectives were met.

Mundo-Love is currently the Air Force Special Operations Command language,
regional expertise and culture program manager. Mundo-Love delivered 42,799
student contact hours in 37 language acquisition programs, better preparing
special operations forces for worldwide foreign internal defense and
building partner capacity missions. She successfully graduated 392 students
in strategic languages, including Arabic, Indonesian, Pashto and Dari.
Mundo-Love's leadership was recognized with the U.S. Special Operations
Command's Language Institution of the Year Award in 2014.

It is important to acknowledge all USAF International Affairs Excellence Award nominees from across the Air Force whose contributions significantly enhanced our ability to build international relationships:

   Lt Col Randal T. Allen       
Capt John M. Barrett   
Maj Rueben J. Choi 
Lt Col Paul L. Howe 
Maj Richard K. Kind 
 Lt Col William S. Latimer
Capt Philip M. Lere 
Lt Col Daniel R. Manning 
Lt Col Gregory C. Mayer 
   Maj William J. McLaughlin   
   Capt Nathan A. Mulholland    
 Maj George D. Sotelo

MSgt Adam Albrecht 
MSgt Eric A. Daugherty
MSgt Richard D. Hogan Jr 
SMSgt James Leonard 
MSgt Daniel L. Musselman
TSgt Craig M. Newbold
MSgt Modesto Saavedra
MSgt Roberto Vasquez  

Senior Civilian:
Susan R. Alaniz
Tyrone J. Barbery 
Michele A. Boyko
Thomas D. Fox 
Michael Hodges
Alice A. Rohrbach
Mark A. Schulman
Rodney W. Stark 
     Hugh R. Sutherland    

Junior Civilian:
Daniel A. Binette
Wesley A. Martin 
Ralf  N. Taylor 
Don R. Tennyson 
Gianni Vignaduzzi
Grover L. White Jr.

Download International Affairs Excellence Award Recipient Letter (PDF).

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