A panel of five chief master sergeants reviewed dozens of Outstanding Airman nomination packets and selected the winners based on their 2014 achievements — primary job accomplishments, self-improvement, community service and physical fitness — as well as a records review and a written essay on being a professional in the Wisconsin Air National Guard.
Derhammer, from Tomah, Wisconsin, works weekdays as an information technology specialist at Volk Field, and as a cyber transport journeyman in the 128th Air Control Squadron on drill weekends. He said he is proud to represent his unit, community and state at the national level.
“Although I am young in my career, I have placed my efforts towards being the best Airman and professional I can be,” Derhammer said. “I place my heart into my work and community, and it is nice to be recognized for those contributions. If anything, it will make me strive to become an even better person, leader and Airman in the future.”
Derhammer enlisted in the Wisconsin Air National Guard in April 2012.
Johnson, of Sun Prairie, Wisconsin, analyzes and validates manual and automated documentation for a variety of computerized accounting systems as an accounting liaison. A Wisconsin Air National Guard member for nearly three years, he credits dedication to excellence and a supportive unit for his selection.
“I continually strive to be the best member of the Guard that I can,” Johnson said. “I’m blessed to have the opportunity to work in such a positive organization and state — without this backbone I would not be nearly as successful in my position.”
Mortvedt, from Stratford, Wisconsin, supervises 12 employees as the manpower and personnel superintendent for the 115th Force Support Squadron. Closing out his 12th year in the Wisconsin Air National Guard, he said strong values have helped him succeed.
“I was taught to work hard, do the best you can, leave it better than when you got there, and help other people,” Mortvedt said. “My wife and I are teaching my two sons these same values, and I think it showed in my nomination package.
“If you set goals, work hard, have an awesome team of professionals around you and excellent mentors, you can pretty much do anything,” Mortvedt continued. “I wouldn’t be where I am without my family, friends, teammates, leaders and mentors.”
Krausz assists the Airmen of the 128th Maintenance Squadron in Milwaukee, and serves as the link between Airmen and the commander. He said he believes he was selected for his dedication to his troops.
“Being selected as the First Sergeant of the Year for Wisconsin means my supervision believes in my abilities, and they have seen the potential I bring to the unit,” Krausz said.
Depotsie, who resides in Cudahy, Wisconsin, has been in the Wisconsin Air National Guard for 32 years. He presently works as the fabrication supervisor in aircraft maintenance for the 128th Air Refueling Wing in Milwaukee. He also has performed more than 1,000 events since 1995 as a member of the base Honor Guard.
“I believe in the value that the Honor Guard provides to the community, families and installation,” Depotsie said. “I am very grateful to the Wing and state for believing in me and selecting me to represent the Wisconsin Air National Guard. But I must say this is not why I spend countless hours doing what I do.
“It is for the families,” Depotsie continued. “When I present a flag to the family or loved one, I can see in their eyes how grateful they are and appreciative that you are there for them. It is truly an honor to participate in events, honoring the service of those that have gone before us.”
Two Wisconsin Air National Guard members took top honors in the 2014 Air National Guard Outstanding Airmen of the Year. Master Sgt. Linda Schwartzlow of the 128th Air Control Squadron was named Air National Guard First Sergeant of the Year, and Master Sgt. David Coker of the 128th Air Refueling Wing was named Honor Guard Program Manager of the Year.