131st Bomb Wing earns Air Force Outstanding Unit Award

  • Published
  • By Airman Halley Burgess
  • 131st Bomb Wing Public Affairs
The 131st Bomb Wing, Missouri Air National Guard, recently earned the Air Force Outstanding Unit Award.

The award recognizes the wing's meritorious service from Oct. 31, 2011, to Oct. 31, 2013.

"An award of this caliber is a reflection of your hard work and ongoing dedication, allowing you to be in an elite category that is truly the best of the best," said Col. Michael J. Francis, 131st Bomb Wing commander, via an email that announced the honor to all wing members.

During the award period, the 131st refined its B-2 global strike capability, "displaying global power in its purest, most deadly form and reinforcing the wing's role in worldwide strategic deterrence," according to the award citation.

In partnership with the active duty 509th Bomb Wing, the 131st validated the Air Force Chief of Staff's total force integration initiative by passing the first-ever Air Force Global Strike Command Consolidated Unit Inspection in June 2013.

In July 2013, the wing successfully completed its Initial Nuclear Surety Inspection, the Air Force's stringent threshold into the nuclear realm. This accomplishment allowed the wing to declare full operational capability and to become the first in Guard history to be certified as a bomb wing for full-spectrum nuclear operations.

Earlier in the award period, 131st's Citizen Airmen ended 2012 by winning the coveted Fairchild Trophy and "Best Bomb Wing" title by prevailing over all other Air Force bomb wings in head-to-head competition.

The Air Force Outstanding Unit Award is given by the secretary of the Air Force to a select number of units that have distinguished themselves by remarkably meritorious service or outstanding achievement.

All Guard members assigned to the wing at any point during the award period are eligible to wear the Air Force Outstanding Unit Award ribbon with their service dress uniform.

The 131st Bomb Wing is headquartered at Whiteman Air Force Base, Missouri, with supporting units at Jefferson Barracks ANGB, Missouri; Ike Skelton Training Site, Jefferson City, Missouri; Lambert-Saint Louis Airport; and Laquey, Missouri.