ROME, N.Y. (01/09/2014)-- New York Air National Guard 2nd Lt. Jose Ortiz of Rome received the prestigious Yukla 27 award at the Undergraduate Air Battle Manager Training Course graduation on Dec. 4 at Tyndall AFB, Fla. Ortiz is assigned to the Eastern Air Defense Sector.
The nine-month ABM course trains Air Force, Air Force Reserve and Air National Guard officers in the command and control of aircraft and weapon systems. The Yukla 27 award is presented to the student who exemplifies the Air Force's core values of integrity, service and excellence and is chosen by course instructors and fellow students. The award takes its name from the call sign of an E-3 airborne warning and control aircraft (AWACS) that crashed in 1995 at Elmendorf AFB, Alaska.
"Being publicly recognized by your peers for selflessness, integrity and dedication is an extraordinary honor and one few officers ever receive," said Col. Dawne L. Deskins, EADS Commander. "I'm extremely proud of Lt. Ortiz and congratulate him on the behalf of the entire unit on this remarkable accomplishment."
Lt. Ortiz is the second EADS officer in three years to win the Yukla 27 award. Lt. Jason Cole of Whitesboro was the 2011 recipient.
The Eastern Air Defense Sector is headquartered at Griffiss Business and Technology Park in Rome. Staffed by active-duty New York Air National Guardsmen and a Canadian Forces detachment, the unit supports the North American Aerospace Defense Command's (NORAD) integrated warning and attack assessment missions and the U.S. Northern Command's (USNORTHCOM) homeland defense mission. EADS is responsible for air sovereignty and counter-air operations over the eastern United States and directs a variety of assets to defend one million square miles of land and sea.