Nuclear weapons center again recognized for excellence

  • Published
  • By Leah Bryant
  • Air Force Nuclear Weapons Center

The Air Force Nuclear Weapons Center recently received the Air Force Organizational Excellence Award for the sixth time since the center stood up in 2006. The center’s AFOEA awards now span nine consecutive years, from 2009 to 2017.


“It’s always nice when I’m on an immersion trip to one of our centers and I get to not only talk about how great it’s doing and how critical its mission is, but I also get to hand out an Air Force Organizational Excellence Award while I’m here,” said Gen. Arnold W. Bunch, Jr., commander, Air Force Materiel Command, during his recent visit to the Air Force Nuclear Weapons Center.


“I’m absolutely thrilled to get to work with all of you. You are all rock stars.  Thank you for what you are doing,” Bunch said as he presented the award to Maj. Gen. Shaun Q. Morris, AFNWC commander.


For the award period of January to December 2017, the center ran 37 acquisition programs and hundreds of sustainment programs valued at $20 billion in Future Years Defense Program funding. 


Its workforce led the Air Force’s nuclear materiel management activities, modernizing two-thirds of the nuclear triad, including the Ground Based Strategic Deterrent and Long Range Standoff Weapon, in spite of some manning shortfalls and a federal hiring freeze. In addition, center experts led nuclear weapons integration and flight tests for $6-billion B61-12 nuclear gravity bomb’s life extension program, extending a critical nuclear deterrent for the United States. 


A center-led nuclear command-and-control communications (NC3) systems team ensured worldwide capability for the NC3 weapon system.  The center also established a new risk management hierarchy, saving $150 million and laying the foundation for an Air Force-wide application.  Finally, the center’s sustainment activities helped drive the highest alert rate for intercontinental ballistic missiles in 50 years. 


Headquartered at Kirtland AFB, the center has about 1,300 personnel assigned to 18 locations worldwide, including at Hanscom AFB, Massachusetts; Hill AFB, Utah; Eglin AFB, Florida; and Tinker AFB, Oklahoma, as well as at several locations throughout the United States and Europe.


Military and civilian members assigned or attached to AFNWC from Jan. 1 to Dec. 31, 2017, are authorized to wear the AFOEA ribbon. Anyone with questions about wearing the ribbon should contact the local force support squadron or manpower and personnel office.