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NAS Whidbey best naval base in the world, Navy says
It’s official: Naval Air Station Whidbey Island is the number one naval base in the world.
The Navy recognizes the top bases in its annual Installation Excellence Awards, which compares how well each are operated and maintained. Bases compete based on factors such as unit morale, quality of life for junior enlisted sailors, property management, health, safety, and environmental conservation.
Whidbey took first in the large base category. Second place went to Lemoore Naval Air Station in California. Third place went to the Kings Bay Naval Submarine Base in Georgia.
“We are honored to be recognized as the Navy’s top installation award winner this year,” said NAS Whidbey Commanding Officer Capt. Michael Nortier. “The award recognizes the importance the Navy and Team Whidbey place in striving for excellence in supporting our active duty forces and their families.”
The award also is indicative of the base’s goal to be good stewards of the environment and developing strong relationships in the community, Nortier said.
NAS Whidbey will receive $224,000 in cash to go toward quality of life programs for sailors and their families.
In the small base category, Naval Air Station Whiting Field in Florida won first, followed by Naval Air Facility El Centro in California and Naval Support Activity Mechanicsburg in Pennsylvania.
Vice Adm. Dixon Smith, commander of Navy Installations Command, announced the results this week.
The vice admiral described the competition this year as “extremely keen” in a prepared statement. Each nomination package was “impressive and spoke to the myriad of great accomplishments that these installation teams have made.”
Navy Installations Command is responsible for all Navy facilities worldwide. Its purview includes port operations, weapons storage, real estate, housing and childcare. It includes more than 50,000 sailors and civilian employees located at 70 bases in 11 regions worldwide.
Next, NAS Whidbey will go head-to-head with all U.S. military bases worldwide, representing the Navy in the Department of Defense Commander in Chief’s Annual Award for Installation Excellence. This award recognizes outstanding efforts in the operations and maintenance of U.S. military installations.
“NAS Whidbey Island is a unique duty assignment and we continue to strive for excellence,” Nortier said.