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Acting Under Secretary of the Air Force Dr. Jamie Morin, meets with Goldsboro Mayor Al King and Col. Jeannie Leavitt, 4th Fighter Wing commander, as part of his visit to Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, N.C., Dec. 17, 2012. Morin visited the base to recognize the wing’s efforts in support of the Air Force Small Business program, and emphasize the importance of small business in helping to find innovative ways to provide efficient and agile solutions for the war fighter. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Aubrey White/Released)
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Acting Under Secretary applauds small business at 4th FW

Posted 12/18/2012   Updated 12/18/2012 Email story   Print story

    


by Staff Sgt. Chuck Broadway
4th Fighter Wing Public Affairs


12/18/2012 - SEYMOUR JOHNSON AIR FORCE BASE, N.C. -- Acting Under Secretary of the Air Force, Dr. Jamie Morin, visited the 4th Fighter Wing Dec. 17, to applaud the wing's efforts in support of the Air Force Small Business Program.

During his visit, Morin presented several Air Force level awards and met with Airmen and local business owners to reiterate their importance to the mission.

"When it comes time for quick response and innovation, American small business is the Air Force's competitive advantage and bases like Seymour Johnson are leading the way," he said.

Throughout the last year, the base led the Air Force with an unprecedented 96 percent contracting rate with small businesses, far exceeding the Congressional standard of 23 percent.

"That number blows away the standards and goals and shows how this base is turning around the trend for the Air Force," Morin said. "We had to turn it around and the Air Force did that this year on the strengths of bases like Seymour Johnson."

The base contracted small businesses on numerous projects in 2012, most notably the renovations of Heritage Hall and the runway construction project worth more than $17 million, the largest in base history. These efforts enabled the wing to earn the 2012 Air Force Top Installation for Small Business award.

"This is an incredible honor for the 4th Fighter Wing and an honor to accept this award," said Col. Jeannie Leavitt, 4th FW commander. "Small businesses have done a lot to help enable the 4th FW mission and through the working relationship with them, it has been a win-win situation."

In addition to the installation award, Kyle Donah, 4th Contracting Squadron director of operations, received the Air Force Small Business Specialist of the Year award for overseeing the runway repair and several other projects.

"It's an honor not only to receive the award but an honor for those to come and present the awards to the wing and myself," said Donah, who was also recognized because of his one-on-one support to local firms. "The wing's award was such a team effort and a much more substantial award. Small business is about the contract specialists who work with me, our customers who support the program and the local companies who do a great job for the Air Force in supporting the war fighter."

In addition to presenting the two wing awards, Morin also recognized Becky Carpenter, Air Combat Command director of small business, with the 2012 Major Command Small Business Director's award. Due to Carpenter's efforts, ACC awarded more than 57 percent of their prime contracts to small businesses, valued at more than $868 million.

Morin discussed the importance of small business in helping to find innovative ways to provide efficient and agile solutions for the war fighter. During tough economic times, he said, utilizing the flexibility of small businesses is essential for the Air Force.

"We are blessed with small businesses that are so agile and efficient and we need to do the best we can to take advantage of it," Morin said. "Small business is the right answer for the Air Force, our Airmen, our national security and our economy, and it's something we're going to continue to focus on."

The visit to the 4th FW Dec. 17 was part of a full day of activities aimed at recognizing superior support of the Air Force Small Business Program. Morin also visited Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, where he recognized 11 additional award recipients and met with Air Force Materiel Command senior leaders and local industry partners.



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