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Reserve engineers win national awards

SEYMOUR JOHNSON AIR FORCE BASE, N.C. -- Three 916th Air Refueling Wing engineers were noted as exceptional performers on a national level on Dec. 6.

Lt. Col. Kerri Grimes of Pikeville was named Outstanding Civil Engineer Manager of the Year by Air Force Reserve Command. Lt. Col. Grimes is the Reserve commander of the 916th Civil Engineer Squadron, the largest squadron within the flying wing. Her superior leadership during the wing's Operational Readiness Inspection garnered her high accolades by Air Mobility Command inspectors when she was recognized as a superior performer out of more than 500 people. Colonel Grimes is currently deployed to Iraq.

Senior Master Sgt. Jeffrey Jarvis of Fayetteville was named Outstanding Civil Engineer Senior Non-Commissioned Officer Manager of the Year by Air Force Reserve Command. Sergeant Jarvis works full-time for the 916th ensuring the wing's largest squadron maintains worldwide readiness at a moment's notice. Sergeant Jarvis handles a budget of nearly $1 million and was the lead planner for more than 52 facility upgrades and 12 new construction projects throughout the state in 2006.

"Sergeant (Jeff) Jarvis has a unique leadership style and always elicits the extra effort from the troops," said Lt. Col. Kerri Grimes, Civil Engineer commander. "He is incredibly successful at every single thing he attempts."

Master Sgt. Grady Raynor of Winterville is the recipient of Air Force Reserve Command's Society of American Military Engineers Goddard Medal. The medal recognizes superior efforts to the engineering community. Sergeant Raynor deployed twice in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom, helping plan and construct forward operating bases in Iraq. He was handpicked for his stellar professional record and leadership abilities to lead a team of more than 30 engineers supporting the 101st Airborne Division. Sergeant Raynor received the Army Commendation Medal for his superior service while working with the Army in Iraq.

"These awards are a great honor, but no surprise," said Col. Paul J. Sykes, 916th ARW commander. "We have the best bunch of people in our civil engineer squadron and now everyone else knows it as well. All members of the 916th are celebrating with them."
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