The 182nd's Illinois Outstanding Airman of the Year
By SSgt Lealan C. Buehrer, 182nd Airlift Wing Public Affairs
/ Published January 08, 2013
January 8, 2013 -- The 2013 Illinois Outstanding Airman of Year award was presented to Senior Airman Alexander Corwin on January 6th, 2013. Airman Corwin is a Traditional Guardsman with the 182nd Maintenance Squadron, 182nd Airlift Wing, at the Peoria Air National Guard Base. Airman Corwin currently serves as an Airlift Instrument Flight Control Systems Craftsman. Present to bestow the award to him were Colonel William Robertson, Wing Commander; Lieutenant Colonel Robert Hart, Wing Vice Commander; and Chief Master Sergeant Stephen Eakle, Command Chief.
Chief Eakle was very proud to say that the Outstanding Airman of the Year was one of his own. "That was very stiff competition," he says, "and what this means is we have here at the 182nd the outstanding Airman for the entire Illinois Air National Guard. Over 3,400 members and he is the leading E-1 through E-4 in the Air Guard...It just clarifies and is another example of how we do things correctly here." The Command Chief was quick to recognize what Airman Corwin's recognition means to the current peer group of Airmen. He noted that "It also dispels any of these things that say that this generation of young people is any less than the generations before...He's a fine young man, truly an example of what we expect here. He honors the core values, and honors all of us that we had that kind of a quality Airman representing us."
Airman Corwin's supervisors note one thing that sets him apart from his peers is that while he is one of the newest members in his shop, he approaches the job with the attitude of a seasoned technician. As an illustration of how seriously he takes his position, Airman Corwin successfully completed all six volumes of his 5-Skill Level Career Development Course in just one month, and has demonstrated a propensity to stay past normal duty hours to complete aircraft work. In an effort to diversify his experience, he has volunteered for several deployments including Bagram Air Field in support of Operation Enduring Freedom, the 618th Tanker Airlift Control Center, and Operation Coronet Oak. Additionally, Airman Corwin demonstrates his beliefs in the Illinois Air National Guard through his membership in the National Guard Association of Illinois and Enlisted Association of the National Guard of the United States. In his off-duty time, Airman Corwin volunteers at Methodist Medical Center as a Patient Care Advocate, and with his family raises money for and participates in charity triathlons and marathons.
Airman Corwin was quite humbled and astonished at how his actions escalated to the receipt of the award. "It's amazing that the things I've done in the past few years led to Airman of the Year. I think it's fantastic. I mean, it's a great award for someone or myself to win," he says. When asked what advice he would give other Airmen on achievement and work ethic, he explained, "I think that just doing as much as you possibly can when it comes to you. I really do the things that I love, and just do the best that I can at them. It leads to great things if you can accomplish them."