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Air Commando wins AF Level Award

U.S. Air Force Tech Sgt. Derick Faulkenberry, 27th Special Operations Support Squadron ground radar section chief, stands in the ground radar maintenance room August 23, 2016, at Cannon Air Force Base, N.M. Faulkenberry was just named the Air Force’s Ground Radar NCO of the Year. (U.S. Air Force photo by U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Eboni Reams/Released)

U.S. Air Force Tech Sgt. Derick Faulkenberry, 27th Special Operations Support Squadron ground radar section chief, stands in the ground radar maintenance room August 23, 2016, at Cannon Air Force Base, N.M. Faulkenberry was just named the Air Force’s Ground Radar NCO of the Year. (U.S. Air Force photo by U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Eboni Reams/Released)

CANNON AIR FORCE BASE, N.M. -- U.S. Air Force Tech Sgt. Derick Faulkenberry, 27th Special Operations Support Squadron ground radar section chief, has been named the Air Force’s Ground Radar Systems NCO of the Year for 2015.

Ground radar systems maintains air traffic control, weather and ground radar equipment used to keep aircraft operating and the surrounding area safe.

“We support all the flying squadrons,” Faulkenberry said. “All of the flyers, everyone preparing to go overseas and go after the enemy, none of those missions happen without a system that’s up and running.”

The father of four from Stone Mountain, Ga., says Cannon has been a career reset for him and he’s learned a lot about the leader he wants to be.

“You need leadership that empowers their people, and a supervisor who believes in their troops,” Faulkenberry said. “The supervision that I have here, they put so much trust in you, you want to go above and beyond.”

Raising the bar in his job has earned him the top NCO award out of his air force specialty. Faulkenberry shared his interests and goals for the future.

“I would love to be an instructor at the NCO Academy or Air Force Academy,” Faulkenberry said. “I teach around base as much as I can. This year I’m teaching True Colors.”

Faulkenberry stressed the importance of good leadership and how it directly correlates with success.

“If you just believe in your people, you’d be amazed what they will do for you.”