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435th FTS and 12th OSS bring home AETC Top Ops Awards

Andrew Lisius, 12th Operations Support Squadron air traffic controller, watches in-and outbound aircraft from his radar screen at the east tower Aug. 14 at Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph. (U.S. Air Force photo by Benjamin Faske)

Andrew Lisius, 12th Operations Support Squadron air traffic controller, watches in-and outbound aircraft from his radar screen at the east tower Aug. 14 at Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph. (U.S. Air Force photo by Benjamin Faske)

(From left to right) Andrew Lisius, Daniel Lewis, Jason Coody, David White, and Robert Calderon, 12th Operations Support Squadron, oversee daily flight operations from the east tower Aug. 14 at Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph. (U.S. Air Force photo by Benjamin Faske)

(From left to right) Andrew Lisius, Daniel Lewis, Jason Coody, David White, and Robert Calderon, 12th Operations Support Squadron, oversee daily flight operations from the east tower Aug. 14 at Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph. (U.S. Air Force photo by Benjamin Faske)

Maj. Jason Earley, 435th Fighter Training Squadron, and Scott Lounsberry, 12th Maintenance Directorate, make final preparations before Earley takes off at Tyndall Air Force Base, Fla., Dec. 15, 2011.  The 12th Flying Training Wing sent a group of 13 pilots and maintainers and five T-38C Talons from Randolph to Tyndall to assist the 325th Fighter Wing in a training exercise.  (U.S. Air Force Photo by LIsa Norman)

Maj. Jason Earley, 435th Fighter Training Squadron, and Scott Lounsberry, 12th Maintenance Directorate, make final preparations before Earley takes off at Tyndall Air Force Base, Fla., Dec. 15, 2011. The 12th Flying Training Wing sent a group of 13 pilots and maintainers and five T-38C Talons from Randolph to Tyndall to assist the 325th Fighter Wing in a training exercise. (U.S. Air Force Photo by Lisa Norman)

A 434th Fighter Training Squadron T-38C Talon jet bound for Randolph Air Force Base, Texas takes off from Laughlin Air Force Base, Texas, Oct. 4.  The jet is one of two of the first jets to be transferred to the 435th Fighter Training Squadron at Randolph as part of the consolidation of the Introduction to Figher Fundamentals training course.  Due to the consolidation, the 435th FTS will receive a total of 20 T-38Cs, 11 active duty instructor pilots, more than 30 support positions, and 80 additional students annually.  (U.S. Air Force Photo by Senior Airman Blake Mize)

A 434th Fighter Training Squadron T-38C Talon jet bound for Randolph Air Force Base, Texas takes off from Laughlin Air Force Base, Texas, Oct. 4. The jet is one of two of the first jets to be transferred to the 435th Fighter Training Squadron at Randolph as part of the consolidation of the Introduction to Figher Fundamentals training course. Due to the consolidation, the 435th FTS will receive a total of 20 T-38Cs, 11 active duty instructor pilots, more than 30 support positions, and 80 additional students annually. (U.S. Air Force Photo by Senior Airman Blake Mize)

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-RANDOLPH, Texas -- The 435th Fighter Training Squadron and 12th Operations Support Squadron were recognized as Air Education and Training Command Top Operations Squadrons for 2012.

"We can all be proud of their outstanding accomplishments," said Col. David Morrissey, commander of the 12th Operations Group. "The 12th Operations Group exists to forge the world's best remotely piloted aircraft pilots and sensor operators, fighter candidates, and flight instructors. The 435th is integral to that mission, and sets the standard for the 12th Flying Training Wing and AETC. It doesn't happen without the world-class support provided by the 12th Operation Support Squadron. Both of these squadrons are shining examples of what the 12th OG does every day - Airpower's Blacksmith, forging aviators for our great nation."

The 435th Fighter Training Squadron earned the title of Top Operations in the fighter category and went on to be named the overall Top Operations Squadron for all categories in all of AETC.
The 435th FTS, which conducts initial Introduction to Fighter Fundamentals instructor and student training, was honored for their seamless integration of 20 aircraft into their squadron and a 41 percent increase in flying following the consolidation of the IFF program in 2012.

Undeterred by the consolidation initiative and 30 percent of their officers deployed, the squadron went on to earn an "Outstanding" rating during AETC's aircrew standardization and evaluation visit and an "Excellent" rating during AETC's combined unit inspections. The 435th FTS also transitioned to a new syllabi hallway through the program to eliminate 54 sorties total and save $162,000 in the flying hour program.

"The 435 FTS is exceptionally honored to even be considered for these awards," said Lt. Col. Ki Jackson, 435th FTS commander.

"We recognize that no one organization earns such accolades by itself; multiple organizations contributed to these accomplishments, including the 12th FTW Maintenance Directorate and the 12th OSS, among others," he said. "The total force of Active Duty, Reservists, and Civilian workforce provide a world-class combination in the 12th FTW and in the 435th FTS. We are humbled by these AETC honors."

The 12th Operations Support Squadron was named the AETC Top Operations Squadron in operations and training support category.

The 12th OSS is responsible for simulator training, scheduling, air traffic control, airfield management, flight records, registrar, weather, airspace management, international training and aircrew flight equipment for all 12th Operations Group training.

During the award period the 12th OSS supported more than 38,000 flying hours and 27,000 sorties for five different squadrons, three unique aircraft and three airfields. Their air traffic control towers are the busiest in the Air Force with more than 220,000 flying operations per year. The towers were also recognized as Ray D. Harding ATC Facility of the Year. The hard work of the 12th OSS was also recognized with an "Excellent" rating in the 2012 AETC's CUI.

"We are extremely humbled to be selected as the number one of 21 operations and training support squadrons in the command for 2012," said Lt. Col. David Nyikos, 12th OSS commander. "I'm very proud of the men and women of the 12th OSS. The award is a testament to their experience and professionalism shown each and every day."