LAAFB OSI Reservist Wins Air Force's IMA of the Year Award
By Thomas Gozzo, Special Agent in Charge, AFOSI Det 810, Los Angeles AFB
/ Published May 18, 2007
Los Angeles Air Force Base -- Maj. John Ryan, Air Force Office of Special Investigations Individual Mobilization Augmentee, was recently honored as the Air Force Outstanding Officer IMA of the Year. Major Ryan received the AFOSI IMA award at a ceremony at Andrews AFB, Md., in April. He will receive the Air Force IMA of the Year award at a banquet in June.
Acting as an AFOSI Detachment Commander, Major Ryan successfully commanded numerous ground combat sorties in Iraq, while identifying numerous insurgents and neutralizing threats to military personnel and United States interests. As a result, a number of terror suspects were captured and several terrorist cells were dismantled saving U.S. lives. Major Ryan proved to be a valuable asset in sustaining positive relationships abroad by building rapport with key Iraqi leadership personnel.
In addition to excelling in functional areas, Major Ryan proved to be a significant asset to the Air Force Reserve community with his selfless dedication. Among his accomplishments was creating and implementing the Detachment's Reserve Training Program, which helped ensure that reservists were ready and successful for deployments. Major Ryan's commitment to serving our military and interests abroad was apparent with his exemplary attendance, earning over 200 points last Ready Reserve year while deploying on short notice to fill a command vacancy in Iraq. Major Ryan voluntarily accepted this leadership role and led numerous counterterrorism operations, which undeniably saved many U.S. lives. As a result of his hard work and remarkable success, Major Ryan earned his second Bronze Star Medal in two years. Leading by example, Major Ryan ordered and led mandatory fitness, marksmanship, driving, small unit tactics, and defensive tactics training.
In addition to his Reserve duties and civilian job, Major Ryan devoted his time to pursuing an advance degree, completing a Master of Arts degree in Military History (International Perspective) while maintaining a perfect 4.0 GPA. This course of study proved invaluable in Major Ryan's ability to lead and operate in the Iraqi combat zone.
Major Ryan also displayed leadership and professionalism in cultural and social activities that reflected positively on the United States Air Force Reserve. Examples of these positive actions included speaking at local schools and discussing careers within the Air Force Reserve, counseling an Army recruit about expectations during his deployment, and coordinating school-supply distribution in Iraq, which in itself fostered cooperation with local leaders. Major Ryan's actions speak volumes about our efforts to improve quality of life in Iraq, both at the present time and in the future.
Major Ryan, always one to be humble, said "I wanted to recognize and commend all the personnel that served under my command in Iraq. All the personnel performed exceptionally well and they were the true heroes. However, I was lucky enough to win the award." Major Ryan stressed over and over the sacrifices and hard work performed by his troops and was very honored that he was even considered for the award.