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First Knight

Staff Sgt. Kelly Jo Bender, 4th Space Control Squadron, was selected for this week's First Knight award. The 4th SPCS at Holloman, AFB, N.M., is one of the 21st Space Wing’s many geographically separated units. This award is designed to recognize outstanding Airmen each week for the work they do every day. (Courtesy photo)

Staff Sgt. Kelly Jo Bender, 4th Space Control Squadron, was selected for this week's First Knight award. The 4th SPCS at Holloman, AFB, N.M., is one of the 21st Space Wing’s many geographically separated units. This award is designed to recognize outstanding Airmen each week for the work they do every day. (Courtesy photo)

HOLLOMAN AIR FORCE BASE, N.M. -- Staff Sgt. Kelly Jo Bender was selected for this week's First Knight award. This award is designed to recognize outstanding Airmen each week for the work they do every day.

Name: Staff Sgt. Kelly Jo Bender

Unit:
4th Space Control Squadron

Duty Title: Noncommissioned officer in charge, Aerospace Ground Equipment Production Support.

Hometown: Round Mountain, Calif.

Time in Service: seven years, five months.

Hobbies: Guitar, reading, gardening, singing, volunteering, racing, being outside, playing with the kids and trying new things.

Favorite Music: Love music. Partial to American Indian songs, but alternative rock, classic rock and old country have a special place in my heart.

Last good book read: Ghosts from the Nursery, Tracing the Roots of Violence.

How has joining the Air Force impacted your life? Without the Air Force I would have been less inclined to leave my rural community and become someone different than the stereotypical local Native American girl. Thanks to the Air Force, I'm making my people proud.

If you were Chief of Staff of the Air Force for one day, how would you change the Air Force? I would put an emphasis on the military tradition; i.e. running with jodies and formation etc. I would focus on manning, put the manpower to work with studies and add/cut where needed. I would maximize our assets and ensure health care facilities are staffed appropriately.

What's your favorite thing about being in the Air Force? My favorite things about being in the Air Force are my Air Force family, the experience and that I'm part of something with a purpose.

What do you like most about being an Airman? I love to feel the rumble of an aircraft in my chest and knowing that I am part of making that happen, and in-turn protecting my family through the skies. Summing it up, our mission: "To fly, fight and win".

Why selected: "Staff Sgt. Bender positively serves the Airmen at the 4th Space Control Squadron by displaying our core values, integrity first, service before self and excellence in all we do." Capt. Andy Wang, 4th SPCS maintenance officer.

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