27th SOCES: Air Force Outstanding Civil Engineer Unit

(U.S. Air Force graphic/Staff Sgt. Alexxis Mercer)

(U.S. Air Force graphic/Staff Sgt. Alexxis Mercer)

CANNON AIR FORCE BASE, N.M. --

Congratulations to Cannon’s 27th Special Operations Civil Engineer Squadron who has claimed the Air Force’s coveted Outstanding Civil Engineer Unit award for 2014.

The unit was credited for executing the largest military construction program in the Department of Defense for 2014, estimated at $1.29 billion. Cannon’s civil engineers were able to maintain and repair more than 2,200 critical facilities and maintained roughly 92,000 acres of land – an incredible $2.9 billion in infrastructure.

“This incredible team completed several hundred projects across the installation all geared toward improving quality of life and driving mission success,” said Lt. Col. Joel Sloan, 27th SOCES commander. “These projects provided everything from energy savings to enabling mission growth of our special operations forces, utilizing the immeasurable skills of our talented engineer Air Commandos.”

The squadron earned the same Air Force-level win in 2012 and also at the major command level in 2013.

The 27th SOCES routinely focuses its efforts toward the design, construction, maintenance and protection of installation infrastructure; which includes the many buildings, roadways, airfield pavements, utility services such as water, gas, sewage treatment and electricity, and the surrounding areas that comprise Cannon.

The unit provides elite emergency response capabilities from fire protection and explosive ordnance disposal, while augmenting military family housing, custodial cleaning and refuse disposal functions for Air Commandos and dependents.

“One of the major accomplishments for us was the dorm construction project for our unaccompanied airmen,” said Sloan. “My team drove the $14 million, 96-room initiative, which was completed several months ahead of schedule; eliminating double-occupancy for nearly 200 junior enlisted airmen. Providing our youngest Air Commandos quality housing and an environment to properly recover from daily demands, truly helps us provide combat ready forces to meet global mission requirements.”

Some of the major projects tackled in 2014 by the squadron were:

  • Renovating the Base Exchange for Starbucks; installing $162 thousand in electrical upgrades, positively contributing to Cannon quality of life.
  • Masterminding $267 thousand in dormitory upgrades; refurbishing existing infrastructure and recreational equipment; another quality of life victory for airmen.
  • Tackling $42.7 million in design and construction for quality of life initiatives for the installation; dorms, base lodging, fitness center, Airman & Family Readiness Center and Youth Center to name a few; all effectively bolstering the MILCON project.
  • Proactively pairing with Balfour Beatty Communities to conduct base-wide housing town hall meetings; tactically informing more than 760 families of upcoming demolition, renovation and scheduled moves.

“We are a base that is constantly moving forward, providing critical improvements to meet the needs of our command and Team Cannon,” Sloan stated. “There is a reason we are one of, if not the most, relevant and lethal wings in the Air Force. Our Air Commandos are a testament to that. I cannot applaud them enough for the insurmountable work they do daily that contributed to this win.”