CANNON AIR FORCE BASE, N.M. --
Airman 1st Class Chad Dayton, 27th Special Operations Comptroller Squadron financial operations technician, received the Special Operations Command Financial Management Outstanding Author Award at Cannon Air Force Base, March 22, 2019.
“I take a lot of pride in the work I do,” Dayton said. “I’m not normally a writer, but when I was assigned it by leadership, I wanted to do the best I could.”
The article was titled “The Whole Airman Concept” and was released in the Air Force Comptroller Magazine. Dayton was chosen by his supervisor for having the qualities of a good Airman and his efforts to maintain them.
“I had to draw from a lot of things, including my own experiences,” Dayton said. “Like the pillars of fitness, I make sure to stay physically and mentally fit because, well, they make me a better person and Airman.”
The writing process took about two weeks for Dayton. While he wrote the article, he was juggling three college courses and was the acting team lead for the permanent change of station team.
“I would usually get out of work at seven,” Dayton said. “As soon as I got home I would load up my computer and get to work on my article. I had to make sure I was happy with it before I showed it to others. It was rough, but I got through it.”
As Dayton wrote the article, he was able to rely on his fellow Airmen to finish it. They read and reviewed the article and helped Dayton send it through the proper channels that led to Dayton receiving the award.
“I didn’t originally think I was a good fit for this,” Dayton said. “Leadership believed in me though. When I was done, I had people proofread it to make sure it was good. They really supported me. They showed the Airman Concept to me.”
The article was released in the Comptroller Magazine in the fall of 2018. Dayton didn’t know how it was received until he was congratulated by his coworkers for receiving the SOCFMOAA.
“It was really a shock,” Dayton said. “I was sitting at my desk, and someone walked over to me and congratulated me. I wasn’t really sure what they were talking about until a few other people did the same. I ran to my computer, and I saw the email announcing I had won.”
The SOCFMOAA is a yearly award meant to recognize Airmen within a special operations comptroller squadron that have written for an Air Force publication.
“It really was an honor,” Dayton said. “While I wasn’t extremely excited at the start, I took it seriously and wanted it to be the best I could write. With people supporting me, congratulating me, and being recognized for the work, it felt like a big payoff at the end.”