News: Army Reserve citizen Soldiers receive MacArthur Awards
Story by Staff Sgt. Kai Jensen
WASHINGTON - Two Soldiers from the 76th Operational Response Command were presented the prestigious General Douglas MacArthur Leadership Award during a ceremony held at the Pentagon today.
Capt. Timothy J. Keegan, officer in charge of Identity Intelligence Office Headquarters at U.S. Southern Command Army Reserve Element, and Capt. Katrina O. Neale, deputy officer in charge of the Dynamic Defense Mission Support Team with the National Capital Region Information Operation Center, received the award for displaying commitment to the Army values, technical and tactical competence and a mature understanding of their leaders, subordinates and peers.
“Duty, honor, country – those three hallowed words reverently dictate what you will be,” said Gen. Douglas MacArthur during his Thayer Award speech in 1962. “They are your rallying point to build courage when courage seems to fail, to regain faith when there seems to be little cause for faith, to create hope when hope becomes forlorn.”
MacArthur was a combat commander in World War I, World War II and the Korean War, and one of only five Army generals to ever wear five stars.
Each year, 28 company-grade officers of all three Army components who perform their duties in an exceptional manner, and clearly demonstrate their dedication to the ideals of MacArthur himself, are recognized. Duty, honor and country are the ideals he lived by and what the MacArthur Award is presented for.
Both Keegan and Neale embodied these ideals and continually demonstrated their abilities well above and beyond their peers.
Keegan, a native of Miami, began his military career when he resigned his ambassadorship of the U.S. Army Reserve for Florida, and volunteered for duty as a uniformed member of the United States Army Reserve. He was 44 at the time.
After commissioning as a second lieutenant in the Military Intelligence branch, Keegan began to distinguish himself as a leader in multiple assignments and then by deploying to Afghanistan where he was awarded the Defense Meritorious Service Medal by Gen. Stanley McChrystal himself.
In his civilian capacity, Keegan is the founder and CEO of the Coalition of Hope Foundation Inc., an organization providing multinational medical personnel, airlift capacity, heavy equipment and emergency medical supplies in support of humanitarian assistance and disaster relief missions
“I am humbled to be selected for this high honor,” said Keegan. “In a broad context, MacArthur leadership recipients simply represent fellow service members who have demonstrated their courage by choosing to defend our nation in uniform and are therefore equally worthy by virtue of their commitment to service.”
Neale, a native of Brandywine, Maryland, was commissioned as a second lieutenant in May 2007 and holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration, as well as a Master of Science degree in information technology.
She distinguished herself when she volunteered to deploy to Afghanistan and served as the cyber assistance team officer in charge with the Southwest Asia Cyber Center Forward Element Joint NetOps Control Center. Neale was the first female officer in charge of the only fly-away cyber assistance team and effectively led all SWACC CATs throughout the area of operations, from Egypt to Afghanistan.
"Being selected as a recipient of this award reinforces my commitment to the mission, my soldiers and my mentees," said Neale. "I am humbled and will remain diligent in upholding the characteristics of a General Douglas MacArthur Awardee."
In her civilian capacity, Neale is a cleared defense contractor and is currently employed as a cyber defense analyst with the Defense Information Systems Agency Command Center.
“Capt. Neale epitomizes the spirit and intent of the MacArthur Award,” said Lt. Col. Michael D. Smith, battalion commander of the NCRIOC. “She volunteered for deployment to Afghanistan and led her Computer Network Defense Assistance Team to ground-breaking accomplishments with professionalism, dedication to mission, and Hooah drive and enthusiasm.”
“The MacArthur Award reflects outstanding leadership at the junior officer level,” said Maj. Gen. Daniel L. York, commanding general of the 76th ORC. “The fact that two of our Soldiers are recipients speaks highly both to their professionalism and to the level of talent present in the 76th ORC.”