News   Reform

DOD Awards Personnel Instrumental in Financial Reform Efforts

Oct. 7, 2020 | BY David Vergun , DOD News

The Undersecretary of Defense Financial Management Awards for 2019 were presented Oct. 5, in a Pentagon ceremony. The awards recognize Defense Department personnel who made outstanding contributions to improving DOD financial management.

Sound financial management is a top priority of the department, David L. Norquist, the deputy secretary of defense said.

A man wearing a face mask bumps elbows with another man wearing a mask while others look on.
Pentagon Ceremony
David L. Norquist, the deputy secretary of defense, presents the Undersecretary of Defense Financial Management Awards for 2019 in a Pentagon ceremony, Oct. 5, 2020. The awards recognize Defense Department personnel who made outstanding contributions to improving DOD financial management.
Photo By: Air Force Staff Sgt. Jack Sanders, DOD
VIRIN: 201005-D-XI929-001
A man wearing a face mask bumps elbows with a woman wearing a mask while others look on.
Award Presentation
David L. Norquist, the deputy secretary of defense, presents the Undersecretary of Defense Financial Management Awards for 2019 in a Pentagon ceremony, Oct. 5, 2020. The awards recognize Defense Department personnel who made outstanding contributions to improving DOD financial management.
Photo By: Air Force Staff Sgt. Jack Sanders, DOD
VIRIN: 201005-D-XI929-002

Financial reforms, such as identifying savings, spending wisely and reducing duplicative efforts are key to the National Defense Strategy, which makes the department a more lethal and efficient force, he said. 

When additional funds are made available through such reform efforts, they can be reinvested into essential capabilities such as hypersonics, 5G and artificial intelligence, he said.

"While we all strive to be good stewards of taxpayer resources, it is our sharpest minds that make the difference," he said. "You are these people. You represent the best of what our department has to offer."

A helicopter fires rockets at night.
Rocket Fire
An Apache helicopter fires rockets during a live-fire exercise in Bemowo Piskie, Poland, Sept. 16, 2020. Exercise Wojtek Fire coordinated assets from the United Kingdom, Croatia and the United States to support the NATO mission.
Photo By: British Army Capt. Sam Davies
VIRIN: 200930-A-YM380-1001C

This year, the board evaluated 79 nominations and recommended a total of 16 winners across the four categories, he said. The awards recognize those whose actions have resulted in significant savings to the taxpayer, said Thomas Harker, performing the duties of the undersecretary of defense, comptroller. 

"Our award nominees demonstrated above and beyond dedication to our financial management community and this year's winners are no exception. From improving audit and accountability processes to leveraging technology to maximizing efforts, this year's winners demonstrate the caliber and creativity of our workforce," he said.

A person counts money.
Simulated Money
Air Force Airman 1st Class Joshua Wells, a financial management flight technician with the 42nd Comptroller Squadron at Maxwell Air Force Base, Ala., counts simulated money during contingency acquisition exercise Emerald Flag 2020, at Hurlburt Field, Fla., March 12, 2020.
Photo By: Air Force Airman 1st Class Hailey M. Ziegler
VIRIN: 200312-F-FJ003-1056C
Person writes on paper with a pen.
Travel Voucher
Air Force Staff Sgt. Kridson Stetson, 9th Comptroller Squadron financial operations flight, fills out a travel voucher at Beale Air Force Base, Calif., Sept. 9, 2020.
Photo By: Air Force Airman 1st Class Luis A. Ruiz-Vazquez
VIRIN: 200909-F-WF370-0010C

The 2019 board chair, Glenda Scheiner, said the award winners' actions have resulted in significant savings to the taxpayers.

"Our award nominees demonstrated above and beyond dedication to our financial management community, from improving audit and accountability processes to leveraging technology to maximize efforts. This year's winners demonstrate the caliber and creativity of our workforce," she said.

Scheiner noted that the awards board consisted of top level officials, including enlisted members from the department and the military services.

Awardees are as follows:

  • Headquarters and major command level — individual: Clint Urvand, SAF/FMBO. Project Name. Improving Airlift Readiness Account Budget Forecasting. Component: Air Force.
  • Major Command Level — individual (tie): Dusty McEldowney, 27th Special Operation Comptroller Squadron. Project Name: 27th Special Operation Comptroller Squadron Financial Analysis. Component: Air Force; and Air Force Tech. Sgt. Gregory A. Dailey, White House Communications Agency Resource Management Directorate. Project Name: Balancing leading the accounting section with Duties POTUS CONUS Logistical Team Lead. Component: Defense Information Systems Agency.
  • Major Command Level — team (tie): MDA FY19 Budget Execution Excellence — Chief Financial Officer/Comptroller. Project Name: MDA FY19 Budget Execution Excellence. Expiring Funds Close Out. Component: Missile Defense Agency. SAF/FMBO Solvency Team — SAF/FMBO. Project Name SAF FMBO Solvency Efforts. Component: Air Force; and Naval Special Warfare Center, Comptroller Department — Naval Special Warfare Center. Project Name: Optimization of Financial Operations at Naval Special Warfare Center. Component Department of the Navy.

Contributions in Financial Management (Excluding Budget)

  • Headquarters and Major Command Level — individual: Chandra Weatherford — Deputy Comptroller for FMS, MOA. Project Name: DAI/DISF Disbursement Transaction Reconciliation Process. Component: Missile Defense Agency.
  • Major Command Level — individual: Shawn Valentine — Operations Research Analyst, AFMC/AFLCMC/FZC. Project Name: Cost Tool. Component: Air Force.
  • Headquarters and Major Command Level — team: Defense Counterintelligence and Security Agency Initialization Financial Officer Office. Project Name: Initialization and Operations of Defense Counterintelligence and Security Agency. Component: Defense Security Service.
  • Major Command Level — team: 1st Special Operations Financial Operation Team — SOCPTS/FMF. Project Name: 1st Special Operations Financial Operation Comptroller Squadron Financial Operations Flight. Component: Air Force.

Contributions in Financial Management in a Contingency Operation

  • Individual: Joseph Suwabe — 88 CPTS. Project Name: Afghanistan Security Force Funds Budge Execution. Component: Air Force.
  • Team: Contingency & Exercise Financial Support Team — HQ/USAFE — AF/AFRICA Financial Management. Project Name: Contingency & Exercise Financial Support. Component: Air Force. Contribution to DOD Audit and Remediation
  • Headquarters and Major Command Level — individual: Deron Mirro — HQ/AF/SOC/FMF. Project Name: AF/SOC/FIAR Focal Point. Component: Air Force.
  • Major Command Level — individual: Amelia Beil — Accounting Operation Limestone. Project Name: Bringing ACL to Limestone’s Audit Forefront. Component Defense Finance and Account Service.
  • Headquarters and Major Command Level — team: DFAS Columbus DATA Analytics Program Office — Columbus Data Analytics Program Office. Project Name: Insight and Automation through Analytic. Component Defense Finance and Account Service.
  • Major Command Level — team: Integrated Hardware/Software Valuation Team — Audit Accounting and Financial Service, NSA. Project Name: Integrated Hardware/Software values. Component: National Security Agency.

Under Secretary of Defense (Comptroller) Salute to Savings (Three winners)

  • European Branch Office — Defense Contract Audit Agency. Project Name: High Profile and High Risk Audit of Multiple Foreign Suppliers for the F-35 Joint Strike Program Office. Component: Defense Contract Audit Agency.
  • Surface Deployment and Distribution Command Data Quality Improvement Team TRANSCOM/J8. Project Name: Surface Deployment and Distribution Command Data Quality Improvement. Component: TRANSCOM.
  • goDoc Project Team — Information and Technology, DFAS. Project Name: goDocs Document Imaging System. Component: Defense Finance and Accounting Service.