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SACEUR Recognition Award highlights capabilities of ACO personnel

Supreme Allied Commander Europe,  General Curtis M. Scaparrotti,  presents 21 Allied Command Operations personnel with the SACEUR Recognition Award.  - Photo by SHAPE Public Affairs Office
MONS, Belgium – General Curtis M. Scaparrotti, Supreme Allied Commander Europe, presented 21 members of Allied Command Operations with the SACEUR Recognition Award during a ceremony at Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe on Nov. 29, 2017.

The awardees came from units across ACO including Joint Forces Command-Brunssum, Joint Forces Command-Naples, Allied Air Command, Allied Land Command, Allied Maritime Command, NATO Allied Ground Surveillance Force, SHAPE, NATO Communication and Information Systems Group and NATO Airborne Early Warning and Control Force. Recipients were selected for their significant contributions and impact to the NATO mission.

"This ceremony is one of the most important things I can do, to recognize these exceptional leaders for everything they do for NATO," said Scaparrotti. "These awardees are a select group representing less than one percent of Allied Command Operations."

The SACEUR Recognition Award was established in order to recognise exceptional service and outstanding individual achievement in a way that may be career enhancing for the recipient.

For Italian Army Major Mario Sorrentino, a team leader in the LANDCOM Knowledge Development and Intelligence Assessment Branch and Production section, it was his contributions to the success of his division by developing and leading his team through the intelligence targeting process in preparation for Exercise Trident Javelin 17 that earned him the award.  "Receiving this award is an incredible honour after a ten-year career in NATO," said Sorrentino. "It is a privilege to serve in NATO and be selected for this recognition."

For Christian Stevens, the senior technician at NATO Airborne Early Warning and Control Force, it was his expertise and subject knowledge as he guided technicians through the inspection process as the NATO E3A aircraft underwent glass cockpit modernization that set him apart from his peers. "This award is unexpected but it feels great to receive," Stevens said. "It was a privilege just to be nominated, but having the award is a true honour."

Each of the 21 awardees brought a unique skillset and leadership ability to their respective commands aiding in the success of NATO's various missions.

As the ceremony came to a close, Scaparrotti offered one more message of thanks. "I want to thank each of you for your great work and commitment," Scaparrotti said. "I also want to thank your families for their support to you and to the Alliance."

Story by SHAPE Public Affairs Office

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