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Top missile defense expert pays tribute to Senator Ted Stevens with award

Riki Ellison, The Missile Defense Advocacy Alliance (MDAA),, held its first annual Alaska Missile Defender of the Year Award Ceremony in Anchorage, Alaska on Saturday, May 10th, honoring those members of the Alaska Army and Air National Guard who operate the U.S. Ground Based Midcourse System.. Ellison is the founder of the Missile Defense Advocacy alliance located in Alexandria, Virginia. He is also one of the top lay experts in the field of missile defense.

The top award presented was the first ever Ted Stevens Memorial Award for missile defense, in honor of Senator Ted Stevens of Alaska, a fierce champion for national missile defense.

The Winner of the Ted Stevens Memorial Award is:

Captain Eric E. Kraus

Senior Tactical Director, 49th Missile Defense Battalion

Alaska Army National Guard


The Winners of the Missile Defender of the Year of the Alaska Air National Guard are:

Captain Erik J. Haugen

Flight Chief, Operational Support Flight, 213th SWS

Technical Sergeant Brian C. Rowbotham

Crew Chief, Missile Warning Operations Center, 213th SWS


The Winners of the Missile Defender of the Year Award for Best Crew are:

Bravo Battery, 49th Missile Defense Battalion

Captain Ryan Richard

Senior Tactical Director

Captain Jason Brewer

Tactical Battle Analyst

Chief Warrant Officer 3 Jacob Moore

Headquarters and Headquarters Battery

Staff Sergeant Derrick Holmes

Engagement Control Team Leader

Sergeant John C. Sorrells

Engagement Control Shift Leader

The event celebrated the contributions to national missile defense by Alaska Senator Ted Stevens. MDAA Chairman Riki Ellison once commended Sen. Stevens for having the “vision and leadership to deploy those systems in the most advantageous and strategic location and to drive political will to have an operational system in place within four years after our Congress and President made the decision.” “He was an Alaskan to the core, and was very proud of what are were doing up there. He never lost sight of the soldiers and families serving up there.” The Ted Stevens Award was presented by Congressman Don Young (R-AK)

Distinguished guests and presenters included Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) Alaska Lieutenant Governor Mead Treadwell, Commander of the Alaska Air National Guard Brigadier General Timothy. The commander of the Alaska Army National Guard, Brigadier General Leon M. Bridges.

The Ground Based Midcourse System is North America’s only line of defense against incoming ballistic missile threats. Fort Greely, Alaska is home to 27 of the 30 Ground Based Interceptors currently deployed.

“No matter what they say about the system or about the testing,” said MDAA Chairman Riki Ellison in his remarks, “we know how much confidence we have in you and this system that has deterred our nation’s adversaries from striking the United States.”

About Missile Defense Advocacy Alliance:

MDAA’s mission is to make the world safer by advocating for the development and deployment of missile defense systems to defend the United States, its armed forces and its allies against missile threats.We are a non-partisan membership-based and membership-funded organization that does not advocate on behalf of any specific system, technology, architecture or entity.

Source: Missile Defense Advocacy Alliance

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