Air Force Names it's First 'Airman of the Year'

CPL Keisha Malone is congratulated by Chief of Air Force Air Vice-Marshal Tony Davies.
CPL Keisha Malone is congratulated by Chief of Air Force Air Vice-Marshal Tony Davies.

25 November 2016

Former Whanganui woman Corporal (CPL) Keisha Malone has received the Royal New Zealand Air Force’s (RNZAF) inaugural Airman of the Year Award.

The Award was announced by the Chief of Air Force, Air Vice-Marshal Tony Davies, at RNZAF Base Auckland at Whenuapai this week.
The new Award has been established to honour the person who best typifies the core values of the RNZAF and the New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF), demonstrating commitment, courage, and comradeship together with dedication and integrity. The Air Force judging panel were also looking for someone making a difference, and whose character and behaviour were exemplary and of the highest standards.
CPL Malone, a Logistics Specialist now working in the Logistics Support Squadron at Whenuapai, Auckland, was recognised for her abilities as a natural leader and organiser, who has consistently demonstrated a desire to identify areas of improvement in her workspace, and followed through on those ideas to see changes implemented.
She is also heavily involved in other Base activities such as sport, where she contributes as a player, manager and administrator.
“The award acknowledges her leadership and passion for improvement,” said her Commanding Officer, Wing Commander Susie Barns.
“She is a real asset to the Air Force. She clearly has a bright future within the organisation, and is making a positive impact as a leader right now.”
CPL Malone grew up in Whanganui, and attended Wanganui Collegiate and Whanganui High School. With military in the family, she joined the RNZAF when she left school.
She says she was surprised but proud to receive the award: “It is incredibly humbling to get something for just doing my job,” she said.
Air Vice-Marshal Tony Davies said nominations were of very high calibre and the selection process had been extremely competitive.

“I’m proud to be leading such a talented, committed and professional group of people,” he said.

As Airman of the Year 2016 Corporal Malone will receive:

•         The Airman of the Year Trophy, to be held at her Unit for one year as well as an individual trophy to retain
•         An Airman of the Year Lapel Pin, to be worn on uniform/civilian clothing when on duty
•         A Chief of Air Force’s Commendation
•         Attendance at appropriate functions or events.
As recipient of the Airman of the Year, CPL Malone has been nominated for the New Zealand Defence Force Person of the Year Award which will be announced on 8 December.

This page was last reviewed on 28 November 2016.