WASHINGTON (NNS) -- The Navy has selected four outstanding women as the Capt. Joy Bright Hancock and Master Chief Anna Der-Vartanian Leadership Award winners as announced in Naval Administrative Message 078/13, March 28.
The Capt. Joy Bright Hancock Leadership Awards are presented annually to one senior and one junior officer; the Master Chief Anna Der-Vartanian Leadership Awards are presented annually to one senior and one junior enlisted service member.
The 2013 Navy Leadership Award Recipients include:
Master-at-Arms 1st Class Virginia L. Horton of Marine Corps Security Force Battalion, Naval Base Kitsap, Bangor, Wash. in the junior enlisted category
Senior Chief Machinist's Mate (SW) Cynthia M. Huratiak of Naval Nuclear Power Training Command, Goose Neck, S.C. in the senior enlisted category
Lt. Sara K. Ursetti, Naval Mobile Construction Battalion Three, Gulfport, Miss. in the junior officer category
Cmdr. Susan L. Ayers of United States Central Command Joint Theater Support Contracting Command, Camp Phoenix, Afghanistan in the senior officer category
"It was motivating, humbling and an honor and a privilege to serve on the board," said Capt. Janet Bristol, senior awards board advisor. "The quality of applicants was very impressive making our decision incredibly difficult. I salute the great things that these people are doing for our Navy, nation, international community and fellow Sailors."
Nominations addressed the nominee's professional accomplishments, leadership style and community involvement. More than 140 nomination packages were submitted in response to the award solicitation message sent out last November and spanned every naval community.
"These exceptionally competitive candidates left me both humbled and proud," stated Master Chief Yeoman Laura Ross, a member of the awards board committee. "It is inspiring to see the enduring impact our Sailors are making and the legacy they are leaving behind."
The Capt. Joy Bright Hancock and Master Chief Anna Der-Vartanian Leadership Awards honor the visionary leadership of service members whose ideals and dedication foster a positive working environment for reinforcing and furthering the integration of women into the Navy. Established in 1987, these leadership awards have been presented annually, recognizing the inspirational leadership of Navy officers and enlisted Sailors on active or Reserve duty.
The two award namesakes were true Navy trailblazers, both reaching new heights within their naval careers and laying the foundation for other women to follow in their footsteps today. The enlisted awards are named in honor Master Chief Yeoman Anna Der-Vartanian, the first woman in any of the Armed Services to be promoted to the rank of E-9.
Capt. Joy Bright-Hancock, who served as a yeoman during World War I, later became a commissioned officer during World War II. Bright-Hancock eventually became the WAVES director in 1946 and was instrumental in ensuring Navy women achieved the same standing as their active-duty male counterparts.
"Those selected for these prestigious awards should be very proud of their accomplishments and hard work," said Bristol. "They truly live up to the Chief of Naval Operations 'Warfighting First, Operate Forward, and Be Ready' tenets, and are highly deserving of the honor that comes with receiving a Captain Joy Bright Hancock or Master Chief Anna Der-Vartanian Leadership Award."
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