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21st SFS member earns 2022 Lance P. Sijan USAF Leadership Award

2022 Lance P. Sijan USAF Leadership Award winner poses for a photo

U.S. Air Force Senior Master Sgt. Thomas J. Neary, 21st Security Forces Squadron logistics and training superintendent, is the recipient of the 2022 Lance P. Sijan USAF Leadership Award in the senior enlisted category for Air Force Material Command at Peterson Space Force Base, Colorado. This award recognizes the accomplishments of officer and enlisted leaders who demonstrate the highest qualities of leadership in the performance of their duties and in the conduct of their lives. (U.S. Space Force photo by Airman 1st Class Kaitlin Castillo)

PETERSON SPACE FORCE BASE, Colo. --

PETERSON SPACE FORCE BASE, Colo. – U.S. Air Force Senior Master Sgt. Thomas J. Neary, 21st Security Forces Squadron logistics and training superintendent, has been named the recipient of the 2022 Lance P. Sijan USAF Leadership Award in the senior enlisted category for Air Force Material Command.

This award recognizes the accomplishments of officer and enlisted leaders who demonstrate the highest qualities of leadership in the performance of their duties and in the conduct of their lives.

It was named in honor of the late Capt. Lance P. Sijan, an Air Force Academy graduate and combat pilot, who was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor for his courageousness while evading capture by the North Vietnamese and during his subsequent captivity as a Prisoner of War.

“I’m incredibly honored to be receiving this award,” said Neary. “It has been a huge team effort, and I couldn’t have made it here without the support of my leadership, my team and my family.”

During his time as the operations superintendent, Neary prepared 44 security forces members to augment Task Force Holloman and assist the Afghan refugees during Operation Allies Welcome.

Neary has also re-organized the unit’s duty schedule, implemented eight-hour shifts, and reduced the defender's monthly duty hours to 165, ultimately returning 26,000 hours back to Airmen.

“We congratulate Senior Neary on this tremendous accomplishment and offer our very best wishes as he moves on to represent [AFMC] at the Department of the Air Force-level competition,” said U.S. Space Force Col. David Hanson, Space Base Delta 1 commander.

Neary’s path to innovate and improve the quality of life for his troops is far from over. He is currently working with the 16th Air Force and the SBD 1 career assistance advisors to launch an app to provide Airmen and Guardians classes in professional and personal development.

“No matter your rank or position, we all have a responsibility to look out for others,” added Neary.  “I am grateful for the ability to hear from my troops and make changes where I can.”

Peterson SFB Schriever SFBCheyenne Mountain SFSThule AB New Boston SFS Kaena Point SFS Maui