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Four 133rd AW Members selected as Minnesota Outstanding Airmen of the Year for 2011

Master Sgt. John Kubes, superintendent of the small air terminal at the 133rd Logistics Readiness Squadron, (left) Tech. Sgt. Jacob Norsten, (center) and Senior Airman Kathryn Morrill, also of of the small air terminal, rig a pallet on Jan. 22, 2010 on the Air National Guard Base in St. Paul, Minn. Kubes has been selected to represent Minnesota as the Air Guard Outstanding Senior NCO, Norsten has been selected to represent Minnesota as the Air Guard Outstanding NCO and Morrill has been selected to represent Minnesota as the Air Guard Outstanding Airman for 2011. USAF official photo by Tech. Sgt. John Wiggins

Master Sgt. John Kubes, superintendent of the small air terminal at the 133rd Logistics Readiness Squadron, (left) Tech. Sgt. Jacob Norsten, (center) and Senior Airman Kathryn Morrill, also of of the small air terminal, rig a pallet on Jan. 22, 2010 on the Air National Guard Base in St. Paul, Minn. Kubes has been selected to represent Minnesota as the Air Guard Outstanding Senior NCO, Norsten has been selected to represent Minnesota as the Air Guard Outstanding NCO and Morrill has been selected to represent Minnesota as the Air Guard Outstanding Airman for 2011. USAF official photo by Tech. Sgt. John Wiggins

Senior Master Sgt. Dave Gonsoski (center) holds an urn with the ashes of a fallen Airman as the 133rd Airlift Wing Base Honor Guard marches in a funeral procession at Fort Snelling National Cemetery on Oct. 12, 2010. Gonsoski has been selected to represent Minnesota as the Air Guard Outstanding Honor Guard member for 2011.USAF official photo by Senior Master Sgt. Mark Moss

Senior Master Sgt. Dave Gonsoski (center) holds an urn with the ashes of a fallen Airman as the 133rd Airlift Wing Base Honor Guard marches in a funeral procession at Fort Snelling National Cemetery on Oct. 12, 2010. Gonsoski has been selected to represent Minnesota as the Air Guard Outstanding Honor Guard member for 2011.USAF official photo by Senior Master Sgt. Mark Moss

Senior Master Sgt. Dave Gonsoski, superintendant of the power production shop at the 133rd Civil Engineer Squadron, folds a flag over the remains of a fallen Airman during a funeral at the Fort Snelling Cemetery in Minneapolis, Minn. on Oct 12, 2010. Gonsoski has been selected to represent Minnesota as the Air Guard Outstanding Honor Guard member for 2011. USAF official photo by Senior Master Sgt. Mark Moss

Senior Master Sgt. Dave Gonsoski, superintendant of the power production shop at the 133rd Civil Engineer Squadron, folds a flag over the remains of a fallen Airman during a funeral at the Fort Snelling Cemetery in Minneapolis, Minn. on Oct 12, 2010. Gonsoski has been selected to represent Minnesota as the Air Guard Outstanding Honor Guard member for 2011. USAF official photo by Senior Master Sgt. Mark Moss

Tech. Sgt. Jacob Norsten of the small air terminal at the 133rd Logistics Readiness Squadron pauses near the flightline of a deployed location in November 2010 where he was working loading aircraft in support of Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation New Dawn. Norsten has been selected to represent Minnesota as the Air Guard Outstanding NCO for 2011.

Tech. Sgt. Jacob Norsten of the small air terminal at the 133rd Logistics Readiness Squadron pauses near the flightline of a deployed location in November 2010 where he was working loading aircraft in support of Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation New Dawn. Norsten has been selected to represent Minnesota as the Air Guard Outstanding NCO for 2011.

Senior Airman Kathryn Morrill of the small air terminal at the 133rd Logistics Readiness Squadron pauses near the flightline of a deployed location in November 2010 where she was working loading aircraft in support of Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation New Dawn. Morrill has been selected to represent Minnesota as the Air Guard Outstanding Airman for 2011.

Senior Airman Kathryn Morrill of the small air terminal at the 133rd Logistics Readiness Squadron pauses near the flightline of a deployed location in November 2010 where she was working loading aircraft in support of Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation New Dawn. Morrill has been selected to represent Minnesota as the Air Guard Outstanding Airman for 2011.

Master Sgt. John Kubes, superintendent of the small air terminal at the 133rd Logistics Readiness Squadron, hooks an airdrop pallet to a hoist to lift it into position on Jan. 22, 2010 on the Air National Guard Base in St. Paul, Minn. Kubes has been selected to represent Minnesota as the Air Guard Outstanding Senior NCO for 2011. USAF official photo by Tech. Sgt. John Wiggins

Master Sgt. John Kubes, superintendent of the small air terminal at the 133rd Logistics Readiness Squadron, hooks an airdrop pallet to a hoist to lift it into position on Jan. 22, 2010 on the Air National Guard Base in St. Paul, Minn. Kubes has been selected to represent Minnesota as the Air Guard Outstanding Senior NCO for 2011. USAF official photo by Tech. Sgt. John Wiggins

Tech. Sgt. Jacob Norsten of the small air terminal at the 133rd Logistics Readiness Squadron operates a hoist while weighing a pallet of barrels to be air dropped on Jan. 22, 2010 on the Air National Guard Base in St. Paul, Minn. Norsten has been selected to represent Minnesota as the Air Guard Outstanding NCO for 2011. USAF official photo by Tech. Sgt. John Wiggins

Tech. Sgt. Jacob Norsten of the small air terminal at the 133rd Logistics Readiness Squadron operates a hoist while weighing a pallet of barrels to be air dropped on Jan. 22, 2010 on the Air National Guard Base in St. Paul, Minn. Norsten has been selected to represent Minnesota as the Air Guard Outstanding NCO for 2011. USAF official photo by Tech. Sgt. John Wiggins

Master Sgt. John Kubes, superintendent of the small air terminal at the 133rd Logistics Readiness Squadron, directs a forklift driven by Senior Airman Kathryn Morrill of the small air terminal on Jan. 22, 2010 on the Air National Guard Base in St. Paul, Minn. Kubes has been selected to represent Minnesota as the Air Guard Outstanding Senior NCO and Morrill has been selected to represent Minnesota as the Air Guard Outstanding Airman for 2011. USAF official photo by Tech. Sgt. John Wiggins

Master Sgt. John Kubes, superintendent of the small air terminal at the 133rd Logistics Readiness Squadron, directs a forklift driven by Senior Airman Kathryn Morrill of the small air terminal on Jan. 22, 2010 on the Air National Guard Base in St. Paul, Minn. Kubes has been selected to represent Minnesota as the Air Guard Outstanding Senior NCO and Morrill has been selected to represent Minnesota as the Air Guard Outstanding Airman for 2011. USAF official photo by Tech. Sgt. John Wiggins

Senior Airman Kathryn Morrill of the small air terminal at the 133rd Logistics Readiness Squadron, secures a shipping container to a fork lift on Jan. 22, 2010 on the Air National Guard Base in St. Paul, Minn. Morrill has been selected to represent Minnesota as the Air Guard Outstanding Airman for 2011. USAF official photo by Tech. Sgt. John Wiggins

Senior Airman Kathryn Morrill of the small air terminal at the 133rd Logistics Readiness Squadron, secures a shipping container to a fork lift on Jan. 22, 2010 on the Air National Guard Base in St. Paul, Minn. Morrill has been selected to represent Minnesota as the Air Guard Outstanding Airman for 2011. USAF official photo by Tech. Sgt. John Wiggins

Senior Master Sgt. Dave Gonsoski, superintendant of the power production shop at the 133rd Civil Engineer Squadron, checks oil levels in the base generator Jan. 23, 2010 on the Air National Guard Base in St. Paul, Minn. Gonsoski has been selected as the Minnesota Air Guard Outstanding honor guard member for 2011. USAF official photo by Tech. Sgt. Erik Gudmundson
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Senior Master Sgt. Dave Gonsoski, superintendant of the power production shop at the 133rd Civil Engineer Squadron, checks oil levels in the base generator Jan. 23, 2010 on the Air National Guard Base in St. Paul, Minn. Gonsoski has been selected as the Minnesota Air Guard Outstanding honor guard member for 2011. USAF official photo by Tech. Sgt. Erik Gudmundson

St. Paul -- Four Airmen from the 133rd Airlift Wing were selected Dec. 21, 2010 to represent Minnesota as the state's Outstanding Airman of the Year.

Senior Master Sgt. David M. Gonsoski, 133rd Civil Engineer Squadron, was selected from the honor guard category, Master Sgt. John Kubes, 133rd Logistics Readiness Squadron, was selected from the senior noncommissioned officer category, Tech. Sgt. Jacob Norsten, 133rd Logistics Readiness Squadron, was selected from the noncommissioned officer category, and Senior Airman Kathryn Morrill, 133rd Logistics Readiness Squadron, was selected from the Airman category.

The OAY board met at Joint Force Headquarters in St. Paul, Minn. to choose the recipients of one the Air Force's highest personal ribbon decorations. Award winners were selected based on superior leadership, job performance, dedication to personal growth and base/community involvement.

The names of the four Airmen will be submitted to the National Guard Bureau for competition at the National level against Guardsmen from all states and territories.

Representing the base honor guard, Gonsoski, who is the 133rd Civil Engineer Squadron's superintendent of power production, spends plenty of extra time with the honor guard duty. The honor guard recently passed the mark of participating beyond 250 ceremonies.

Lt. Col. Sandra Best, Logistics Readiness Squadron commander, spoke about Kubes' success within the unit, describing him as the type of person everyone in the small air terminal desires to deploy with due to his talent for mentorship.

"From a commander's perspective, he is such a go-to guy and an outstanding leader," said Best.

Several members from the small air terminal of LRS recently returned from a four-month deployment to Al Asad Air Base, Iraq, in support of Operation New Dawn during which Kubes served as an immediate supervisor to Airmen like Staff Sgt. Casey Jaeger, joint inspector for the 133rd Logistics Readiness Squadron.

"He's kind of like the ideal supervisor's supervisor," said Jaeger. "He can teach you how to be a supervisor and he really takes you under his wing."

Jaeger also worked alongside Norsten during his deployment and described him as a great worker with a wonderful attitude.

Crediting his work accomplishments to the people he works with at the 133rd LRS, Norsten said he wouldn't have the job knowledge, drive, and attention to detail that he has without them.

Similarly, Morrill said she considers herself blessed to work with the caliber of people in LRS.

"I belong to a phenomenal unit and I am so proud to represent not only the 133rd Airlift Wing, but our great state," said Morrill. "I come from an exceptional unit whose professionalism and knowledge of our career field is outstanding."

After her recent deployment with LRS Morrill said she was happy to be selected as an Outstanding Airman of the Year along with two other exceptional NCOs, Kubes and Norsten.

"I have been deployed with both of them and they are prime examples of what all NCOs should be," said Morrill. "I look forward not only to what happens at the national level of competition, but to what I can bring to my unit and the 133rd Airlift Wing in the future."