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97th Emergency Management journeyman named AETC's 2014 Outstanding Airman of the Year

ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. – Senior Airman Jessica Paulson, 97th Civil Engineering Squadron emergency management journeyman was named Air Education and Training Command’s 2014 Outstanding Airman of the Year. Paulson’s selection as one of AETC's outstanding Airmen propels her to the next tier of competition at the Air Force level. (Courtesy photo)

ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. – Senior Airman Jessica Paulson, 97th Civil Engineering Squadron emergency management journeyman was named Air Education and Training Command’s 2014 Outstanding Airman of the Year. Paulson’s selection as one of AETC's outstanding Airmen propels her to the next tier of competition at the Air Force level. (Courtesy photo)

ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. - -- News traveled fast to the desert as a deployed emergency management journeyman from the 97th Emergency Management Flight received some outstanding news from her command.

Senior Airman Jessica Paulson was named Air Education and Training Command's outstanding Airman of the year for 2014. She received this award soon after deploying to Al Udied Air Base, Qatar and achieving many other milestones within her career, all of which she attributes to her home station flight.

"There were a lot of opportunities to improve and further develop our emergency management programs and I had great leadership to guide me along the way," said Paulson. "I am so proud of how my flight came together for a successful Compliance Unit Inspection. Despite the long hours and some challenging days, we maintained a strong sense of morale and cohesiveness within the flight. My greatest accomplishment last year was being a part of that team and getting the mission done."

As one of 12 Outstanding Airmen of the Year for AETC, Paulson will now compete at the Air Force level.

"We congratulate these fantastic Airmen - great men and women who deserve the heartiest congratulations for their contributions and achievements as leaders in our Air Force," said Gen. Robin Rand, AETC commander. "Their influence shapes our Air Force and our nation. We wish them all the luck at the top."

Paulson carries a small saying that inspires her to strive for excellence.

"I have been fortunate to have had several excellent supervisors and leadership who have taught me a lot about what it means to be an Airman," said Paulson. "A former superintendent always encouraged my flight to be proactive, not reactive. This lesson has carried over the years and gives me the motivation to work hard with a positive attitude."

Receiving one of the biggest command level awards and being deployed for the first time are dreamlike experiences for the Airman of 4 years.

"It is very surreal. Everything I have been able to accomplish is due to an amazing team I work with daily, strong leadership, mentors over the years, and an incredibly supportive family," said Paulson. "This is my first deployment and I am excited to have learned so much in my job working in a different section."