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    NY Civilian Takes Top Air Guard Award

    NY Civilian Takes Top Air Guard Award

    Photo By Ryan Campbell | Amber Murray, the management support specialist for the New York Air National Guard...... read more read more



    Story by Master Sgt. Ryan Campbell  

    New York National Guard

    New York Air National Guard employee Amber Murray was named the Air Force Association Lisa S. Disbrow Outstanding Civilian of the Year for 2022 for the work she did throughout the year in support of New York Air National Guard operations.

    The award was created to annually recognize Air Force civilian employees with less than 10 years of federal service, who exemplifies the professionalism and dedication to duty of former Under Secretary of the Air Force Lisa S. Disbrow.

    Each year, Air National Guard leadership announces the recipient of this award based on nominations from the 54 state and territory Air National Guards.

    Winning this award moves onto compete for overall Air Force top honors out of the more than 170,000 Air Force civilians across the world.

    Murray works as the management support specialist for the New York Air Guard as well as the administrative aide for Maj. Gen. Denise Donnell, the commander of the New York Air National Guard.

    “At first I thought it was just a local nomination type of thing,” Murray said. “I didn’t realize how big it was.”

    “I’m very honored and a little overwhelmed,” she continued.

    Murray was put in for the award by Chief Master Sgt. Greg Mihalko, the senior enlisted leader at New York Air Guard headquarters.

    “When I was hired at JFHQ last September, Mrs. Murray was the first person to contact me asking if I required assistance gaining access to the Army network, shared drives and other administrative taskings,” Mihalko explained.

    “After I started, I saw her consistently doing the same thing for everyone and never hesitated to go above and beyond,” he said.

    Besides her work in the office, Mihalko emphasized the magnitude of what she does outside of work for her community, volunteering her services as a paralegal and public notary to low income families.

    In the last year, Mihalko explained that Murray notarized 63 documents at no charge which was valued at $1,890. She also teamed with a local attorney to provide legal services to 12 families valued at $65,535.

    She also takes pride in coming from a military family, frequently attending fundraisers and events to honor veterans, Mihalko said.

    From Latham, Murray has worked for DMNA for 16 months.

    “My main function is the administrative support of the office, which helps the functionality of all the wings,” Murray said.

    The New York Air National Guard is made up of the 105th Airlift Wing in Newburgh, the 106th Rescue Wing on Long Island, the 107th Attack Wing in Niagara Falls, the 109th Airlift Wing in Scotia, the 174th Attack Wing in Syracuse and the Eastern Air Defense Sector in Rome, making it one of the largest Air National Guards in the country.

    Murray also handles the administrative needs for Maj. Gen. Denise Donnell, including travel, scheduling and daily functions.

    She said she always had a dream of serving the nation and found that she could contribute the most as a civilian employee.

    “I realized that sometimes you can do the job you really want just behind the scenes,” Murray explained. “This was an opportunity for me to do that.”

    The best part of the job according to Murray, is getting the chance to work with all of the wings across the state and getting to know people and understanding the various missions the New York Air National Guard is tasked with.

    “For me, it’s pretty cool,” she said. “Not everyone understands the missions or can relate to it, being able to explain it to people is pretty cool.”

    Looking into the award criteria, Murray said she wanted to understand who Lisa S. Disbrow is and do as much research into it as she could to see if she could measure up to the significance of the award.

    “Yes and no,” Murray said. “I really just try to do the best I can, I give everything I’ve got and then some.”

    “This recognition for Mrs. Murray means so much to me,” Mihalko said. “As a leader, the greatest award for me is to see the appreciation of the people in my charge.”

    Looking ahead, Murray said she is looking forward to where the New York Air National Guard will take her and the opportunities for growth and to keep learning.

    “It’s a great place to work as,” Murray said. “I’ve got a lot to learn and I’m hoping to do more.”



    Date Taken: 02.14.2023
    Date Posted: 02.14.2023 12:45
    Story ID: 438440
    Location: LATHAM, NEW YORK, US

    Web Views: 359
    Downloads: 1