BENS awards highlight USTRANSCOM and outstanding air, land, and sea troops

U.S. Air Force Gen. Jacqueline D. Van Ovost, commander of U.S. Transportation Command (USTRANSCOM), accepted the Eisenhower Award from U.S. Army Gen. Joseph Votel, President & CEO of Business Executives for National Security (BENS) (left) and U.S. Air Force retired Gen. Norton Schwartz (right), at a BENS ceremony held April 19, in Washington D.C. Van Ovost accepted the award on behalf of the men and women of USTRANSCOM for their role in maintaining U.S. national security and the nation’s competitive edge.

SCOTT AIR FORCE BASE, Ill. (April 21, 2022) – The Business Executives for National Security (BENS) presented the Eisenhower Award to U.S. Air Force Gen. Jacqueline D. Van Ovost, commander, U.S. Transportation Command (USTRANSCOM), for the command’s role in maintaining U.S. national security and the nation’s competitive edge in a ceremony held April 19 in Washington, D.C.  

“I’m honored to participate tonight in recognizing USTRANSCOM’s significant role in defending our nation, both home and abroad,” said Van Ovost as she accepted the award on behalf of the men and women of the command.

Three members of USTRANSCOM were also honored during the ceremony: U.S. Air Force Reserve Lt. Col. Shannon Walker, U.S. Navy Reserve Lt. j.g. William Peterson, and U.S. Army Sgt. 1st Class Kimberly King.

“I’m proud of these tremendous teammates joining me tonight,” said Van Ovost. “They represent TRANSCOM’s diverse mission set executed every day in support of our national objectives and ideals of our democracy.”

Walker is a knowledge management specialist with USTRANSCOM’s Joint Enabling Capabilities Command. She was recognized for her contributions to Joint Task Force-Crisis Response, Afghanistan, where she served as the director of personnel. She was accountable for 3,000 U.S. personnel in four countries who were assisting in the relocation of more than 124,000 allied, coalition, and Afghan personnel during a Noncombatant Evacuation Operation. Walker blended professionalism and compassion as she assisted Afghan families during processing at Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul.

Peterson serves in the Strategic Sealift Officer Program with the U.S. Navy Reserves. The program provides licensed mariners to the merchant fleet who perform as tactical advisors to a ship’s crew and liaison with USTRANSCOM’s Military Sealift Command and the U.S. Navy. Peterson was recognized for his most recent tour on the Merchant Vessel Ocean Glory, where he maintained secure communications systems and conducted contested maritime environment training with the crew delivering military cargo to Guam. He was also recognized for his efforts in communicating the critical importance of the Strategic Sealift Officer Program to midshipmen at the United States Merchant Marine Academy. 

King is the Chief Movement Supervisor in the Military Surface Deployment and Distribution Command’s (SDDC) Operations Directorate. She was instrumental in facilitating SDDC’s ability to successfully support movement operations throughout the global COVID-19 pandemic. Additionally, she oversaw major exercise movements such as Defender Europe, managing and tracking brigade-sized unit movements on more than 70 vessels. King also excelled at safely tracking and monitoring the Department of Defense’s Arms, Ammunition, and Explosives shipments traveling the nation’s highways. She managed multiple situations involving commercial transportation service providers in protecting more than 45,000 shipments. 

BENS is an American nonpartisan, nonprofit organization comprised of over 400 senior business and industry executives who volunteer their time and expertise in collaboration with government and military leaders to help develop innovative and pragmatic solutions to our country’s most pressing national security problems.

USTRANSCOM exists as a warfighting combatant command to project and sustain military power at a time and place of the nation’s choosing. Powered by dedicated men and women, TRANSCOM underwrites the lethality of the Joint Force, advances American interests around the globe, and provides our nation's leaders with strategic flexibility to select from multiple options, while creating multiple dilemmas for our adversaries.


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