Chairman Recognizes Civil Servants for Defense Contributions
By Army Staff Sgt. Michael J. Carden
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, March 30, 2009 The chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff today recognized eight civil servants for their positive impact on national security and their efforts in support of the Joint Staff throughout the past year.
Navy Adm. Mike Mullen presented them with the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Joint Distinguished Civilian Service Award in a ceremony at the Pentagon.
“For the eight of you … this is really in recognition of the special relationships, special efforts on your part, to really make a difference in what has been and what continue to be the most challenging of times,” Mullen said.
The recipients are:
-- John Young, undersecretary of defense for acquisition, technology and logistics. Under Young’s leadership, major defense acquisition programs delivered vital capabilities to warfighters in Iraq and Afghanistan, Mullen said. Most notably, Young’s efforts led to the eventual fielding of mine-resistant, ambush-protected vehicles that are responsible for saving the lives of countless troops who’ve encountered roadside bombs in the war on terror. Young also led a work force of more than 126,000 acquisition personnel.
-- Tina Jonas, former Defense Department comptroller and chief financial officer. Jonas managed, developed and executed an annual defense budget of more than $665 billion for fiscal 2009, Mullen said. Her expertise and direction allowed for rapid funding and fielding of the MRAP protective vehicles to troops serving in Iraq and Afghanistan. Also, she directed more the 50,000 financial professionals, oversaw the Defense Department’s financial policy, financial management system and business modernization.
-- Thomas Hall, assistant defense secretary for reserve affairs. Hall managed changes in equipment procurement, funding, benefits and entitlements and roles and missions within the National Guard and Reserve forces. He oversaw $30 billion in National Guard equipment funding, as well as a concurrent increase of more than $20 billion for the reserves. Hall helped to give reserve-component troops, their families and employers greater flexibility by reducing barriers to serve, with enriched family care programs and the expansion of Tricare military health plan service. Mullen said that Hall “is singlehandedly responsible for shaping a force that is the most combat experienced and ready since World War II.”
-- Mary Beth Long, former assistant defense secretary for international security affairs. Long was instrumental in the conclusion of the negotiations for the U.S.-Iraq status-of-forces agreement. She also was highly involved in the efforts to pursue missile defense agreements with the Czech Republic and Poland, which resulted with enhanced security agreements for the United States and Europe, Mullen said. She was responsible for shaping improved relations with Middle Eastern allies, as well as the U.S. response for the Russian invasion of Georgia. She also helped develop approaches for reducing the Taliban’s use of narcotics as a revenue source in Afghanistan.
-- John Grimes, assistant defense secretary for networks and information. Grimes led efforts to improve the defense of national security systems and vital cyber infrastructure. He also supported information sharing demands and trust between individuals and organizations, which resulted in an increased and secure capability to fight terrorism, help in the wake of natural disasters and assist in maintaining national security, Mullen said.
-- Patricia Bradshaw, deputy defense undersecretary for civilian personnel policy. Bradshaw is responsible for developing the concept of an expeditionary civilian workforce. The Defense Department’s civilian work force is more agile and responsive to the operational needs of combatant commands, Mullen said. She created policies to increase medical support for deployed civilians as well as those recovering from deployment injuries. She’s also responsible for ensuring combatant commanders were staffed with quality senior executives for global joint interagency needs.
-- Cheryl Roby, principal deputy assistant secretary of defense for networks and information integration. Roby helped to deliver network-centric capabilities and products to warfighters designed to defend against and defeat the ever-changing cyber threat, Mullen said. She also helped to develop program and budget reviews that led to success in antiterrorism and defense of national security systems.
-- Michael Coulter, former principal deputy and now acting assistant secretary of defense for international security affairs. Coulter helped to improve relations between the United States and nations in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, in which he fostered significant improvements security cooperation, foreign military sales and military education and training programs, Mullen said. Coulter’s role in U.S.-Denmark defense talks improved the Danish commitment to NATO, and his representation for Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates at the U.S-Ukraine Bilateral Defense Consultations led to significant Ukraine defense reforms, Mullen added.
Mullen also lauded the recipients’ families for their support, calling their contributions “absolutely critical.”
“These are very demanding times and very demanding jobs, and we couldn’t do them without tremendous family support,” he said. “The hours are long; the travels are tough. And those who support us are absolutely critical.”