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NLS Distinguished
Military Service Awards
NLS Distinguished Military Service Awards
NLS Distinguished Military Service Awards
NLS Distinguished Military Service Awards
NLS Distinguished Military Service Awards
NLS Distinguished Military Service Awards
NLS Distinguised Military Service Awards 2010

Diversity in the Armed Forces

They go beyond challenging environments and are great examples of leadership and bravery. These men and women, of different branches of the military, stand strong on their mission defending the nation with their self. On September 9th, LATINA Style was proud to award 11 Latinos and Latinas, of all four branches, including the 4th Estate Agency, during the Distinguished Military Service Awards Luncheon. Their distinctive accomplishments, unrelenting efforts, and steadfast devotion to duty mirror great character and true commitment to protecting the U.S.

Master Sergeant Michael E. Alicea
U.S. Army

Master Sergeant Michael E. Alicea has demonstrated outstanding leadership and knowledge in developing the Equal Opportunity (EO) and Deployable Sexual Assault Response Coordinator Programs throughout his career. During his tenure the number of sexual assault cases in his area of operation decreased by 75 percent and positively affected over 21,000 Soldiers and Coalition members concerning Equal Opportunity, Human Relations, and Sexual Harassment issues. His support of the community and message of diversity to Hawaii’s youth affected over 1,000 students and parents throughout the area. His outstanding professionalism, skill, leadership, and dedication to duty as a Noncommissioned Officer and service member resulted in elevated levels of understanding of diversity and equality in communities spanning the globe from the Pacific Islands to the Middle East.

Mr. Samuel Perez
U.S. Army Civilian

A member of the Armament Research, Development and Engineering Center (ARDEC) for the last 21 years, Mr. Samuel Perez distinguished himself by exceptionally meritorious service in the performance of his duties to the United States. A native of Puerto Rico, Perez worked his way through the ranks, from an entry-level mechanical engineer in 1989 to his current position as Supervisory Chief for the Illuminating and Smoke Mortar Cartridges Branch, which he began in 2006. He displayed outstanding leadership by providing critical assets to theater in 95 days. Mr. Perez leads a staff of engineers who come to work to save Warfighter lives and live the Army values. He was instrumental in creating opportunities and advancing DoD personnel, including Hispanic Americans to higher level positions. Mr. Perez extended his leadership to the Hispanic community by becoming a Certified Local Lay Speaker and leading missionary work fulfilling both domestic and international human needs.

Lieutenant Commander Nieva M. S. Brock
U.S. Navy

With 16 years in the U.S. Navy, Lieutenant Commander Nieva M. S. Brock selflessly volunteered to deploy to Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom where she successfully built and led a joint team of 41 judge advocates, masters-at-arms, and civilian linguists who collected vital criminal evidence against 3,000 of the most dangerous insurgents in the war on terror who had committed the most heinous of crimes. LCDR Brock’s innovative investigative procedures were adopted by Coalition force investigative bodies all over Iraq. LCDR Brock also volunteered with “Hearts for Baghdad” to help feed and clothe Iraqi children. As the Chairperson for the Office of the Judge Advocate General and Naval Engineering Facilities Command Diversity Committee and a volunteer for in-theater diversity events, she is a model proponent for diversity in the Navy; and a role model for women and Latinas who strive to be the best. “I foresee that Latina numbers will be increasing in roles traditionally unattainable by us,” she says. “The military and federal government’s desire to diversify and reflect the face of the Nation will increase Latina opportunities exponentially. I look forward to the day when a Latina serves as the Secretary of the Navy.”

Ms. Glenda N. Leon
U.S. Navy Civilian

With nine years of experience as a U.S. Navy civilian, Ms. Glenda N. Leon has demonstrated remarkable initiative and professionalism in seeking new challenges in her career and has made unique contributions to the organizations involved. Her technical expertise and management skills have contributed to the success of the U.S. Navy technical community in providing the Submarine Fleet with the world’s most capable undersea warfare weaponry. As part of the Hispanic Recruitment in the Naval Undersea Warfare Center Division Newport, RI., Ms. Leon is an inspiration to young Hispanics as she participates in outreach and volunteer activities to support her colleagues and local community members. “By participating as a recruiter, I intend to provide new opportunities and open doors to fellow students from the University of Puerto Rico Engineering Campus who are looking to work in a cutting edge technology environment,” she states. “I foresee Latinas within the next 10 years sharing more responsibilities and more involved in the decision making process in higher level positions within every aspect of work positions.”

Master Sergeant Kim A. Lannon
U.S. Marine Corps

Master Sergeant Kim A. Lannon has been recognized for her exceptionally meritorious service in the performance of her duties to the United States Marine Corps. As a member of the Daughters of the American Revolution, MSgt Lannon volunteers more than several hours in support of this organization, which includes raising $2,000 for the Haley House, and her yearly support to the Toys for Tots campaign. MSgt Lannon supervised the maintenance readiness for over 10,035 maritime prepositioning force assets and improved readiness reporting procedures to higher headquarters and the operating forces. Her leadership, initiative, and selfless devotion to duty reflect great credit upon herself, the United States Marine Corps, the United States Naval Service, and the Department of Defense. 

Master Sergeant Sandra Nunes
U. S. Air Force

“I joined the military October 1st, 1991, just 4 months after graduating High School,” stated Master Sergeant Sandra Nunes who served as a Noncommissioned Officer in Charge, Pharmacy Flight, 56th Medical Support Squadron, Luke Air Force Base in Arizona. MSgt Nunes managed pharmacy operations, leading 38 personnel and executing a 13 million dollar budget. She validated contract purchases, which contributed to her Medical Group’s “Best Clinic” award.  She assisted a 69 member humanitarian mission “Beyond the Horizon” as an interpreter in the Dominican Republic. She was the President of the Hispanic Heritage Committee and coordinated six events for 4,900 of Luke’s personnel. Additionally, Sergeant Nunes’ leadership garnered the pharmacy the Air Force “Best Team” award. Her hard work was sought after when she was chosen as the new Executive Officer, the only enlisted executive in the wing. Nunes foresees Latinas being more independent and willing to step into roles that their mother’s would have never imagined their daughter would be doing. “They would hold positions that will impact young women and inspire them to set their goals high,” she states. 

Ms. Julie L. Moran
U. S. Air Force

Ms. Julie L. Moran has served in several positions culminating as a Principal Intelligence Analyst, Overhead Persistent Infrared Production Flight, Production Squadron, Data Analysis Group, National Air and Space Intelligence Center, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio. Ms. Moran led a team of 25 analysts through severe handicaps resulting from missing information on sensor configuration and ensured data from the first component of the Space Based Infrared System would be accessible to the intelligence community on schedule. As co-chair of the National System for Geospational Intelligence’s Overhead Persistent Infrared Operations Integration Roadmap Working Group, Ms. Moran campaigned for a comprehensive strategic vision for the future of the discipline’s contributions to national defense and authored the roadmap linking vision to future capabilities.

Sergeant First Class Lana Luciano
National Guard Bureau

Sergeant First Class Lana Luciano was assigned as a member of the Multinational Forces and Observers, Task Force Sinai, Egypt in support of the Peace Treaty between Egypt and Israel. During this deployment, SFC Luciano served as the Army Post Office Postal Supervisor for mail movement operations in Tel Aviv, Israel while geographically located in Egypt and assigned as the Non-Commissioned Officer in Charge of U.S. Army Postal Operations at both the North and South Camp of the Multinational Forces and Observers mission in Egypt. SFC Luciano was responsible for postal operations at three locations in two countries, accountable for postal assets worth over $350,000, and responsible for the supervision of 12 Soldiers who were spread out over 250 miles. In spite of these enormous responsibilities, made more difficult by the extreme geographical challenges, the exceptional leadership, professionalism, and dedication to duty of SFC Luciano was credited for greatly enhancing the capability of her unit.

Lieutenant Erica Kelly
U. S. Coast Guard

Lieutenant Erica Kelly distinguished herself by exceptionally meritorious service in the performance of her duties to the United States. As Coast Guard liaison to the National Counter Terrorism Center (NCTC), LT Kelly has galvanized maritime portfolio development and tripled production at the joint center. She personally authored nine national-level intelligence products, some of which were directly in support of and read by the President of the United States. LT Kelly also served as the Operations Officer for a joint Navy/Coast Guard division in the National Maritime Intelligence Center. Under her leadership, the division earned an Office of the Director of National Intelligence Distinguished Analysis team award. LT Kelly amply demonstrated her devotion to civic participation, earning accolades for her work with the Special Olympics, the United States Coast Guard Cultural Committee, the Combined Federal Campaign, and American Heroes, among others.

Ms. Lonnie Suazo
U. S. Coast Guard

A highly respected leader in the U.S. Coast Guard, Ms. Lonnie Suazo is continuously sought by intelligence staff members, sector and subordinate unit personnel as well as other government and industry partners as an intelligence expert within the Baltimore and National Capital regions. Ms. Suazo provided expert guidance and mentorship to three petty officers, two of whom were Latino, in developing as Coast Guard professionals. Ms. Suazo expanded partnerships within the maritime community by leading an initiative to provide relevant local, state, and national intelligence feeds to local Coast Guard commands. She was an essential contributor to four National Special Security Events including President-Elect Obama’s Whistle Stop Tour, 2009; Inauguration; 2010 State of the Union Address, and the 2010 Nuclear Security Summit. Ms. Suazo developed a matrix to target law enforcement operations and provided intelligence to guide decisions through a potential terrorist threat to the Port of Baltimore. In addition, she also serves as an active member of the command Human Relations Council.

Ms. Maritza Guevara
Defense Logistics Agency

Throughout her 25-year career at the Defense Supply Center Philadelphia (DSCP), Ms. Maritza Guevara has excelled in analytical positions, including her current position of Supervisory Management and Business Process Analyst. She has received multiple awards for her contributions, including Sustained Superior Performance Awards. Her technical expertise and continuous commitment to the DSCP and its customers during the implementation of the Defense Logistics Agency’s (DLA) Enterprise Business System was critical for mission success. Ms. Guevara has actively participated in the Hispanic Employment Program (HEP), and has been instrumental in promoting and providing diversity initiatives that encourage, create opportunities, support, and contribute to the career development and advancement of Hispanic employees throughout DLA.

By Gloria Romano