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Near-Peer Competition is Back:
Are We Ready Now and Into the Future
February 6 - 8, 2018  San Diego Convention Center

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Copernicus Award

About the Award:

The Copernicus award was established in 1997 as a result of a discussion among Lieutenant General C. Norman Wood, USAF (Ret.), then President and CEO of AFCEA International, Captain James A. Barber, USN (Ret.), then Publisher and CEO of the U.S. Naval Institute, and the late Vice Admiral Art Cebrowski, USN, who was the Navy N6 at that time. The name for the award came from the Copernicus Architecture used as the blueprint for the future C4I structure of the Navy. Recipients are selected based on their sustained superior performance in a C4I/IT-related job. The selections are made each year by Navy judges who review applications from the Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard, including active duty and civilians. AFCEA and the U.S. Naval Institute present the awards at their annual Western Conference held in San Diego each winter.

Young AFCEAN Awards

About the Awards:

Individual Award: Distinguished Young AFCEAN (DYA)

The Distinguished Young AFCEAN Award recognizes and rewards exceptional performance in four areas: leadership and guidance for the Young AFCEAN program; superior technical achievement in the professional arena; a record of going "above and beyond" at the local AFCEA chapter or region level; and mentoring provided for other Young AFCEANs.  Nominees for this award are evaluated through September of the current year. Click Here to read more.

Individual Award: Emerging Leadership

The Emerging Leadership Award is given for exceptional service to AFCEA at the local and/or International level. This award is presented to individuals who have demonstrated continuous leadership in Young AFCEAN activities since winning the Distinguished Young AFCEAN award.  Nominees for this award are evaluated through September of the current year. Click Here to read more.

Chapter Award: Young AFCEAN Chapter Program

The Young AFCEAN Chapter Program Award is given to the one chapter which has most significantly contributed to the professional development of younger AFCEANs by providing a forum of programs and initiatives geared to their unique needs. Chapters of similar size compete with each other for this award and there are five different size categories. Click Here to read more.

Model Young AFCEAN Program

The purpose of the Model Young AFCEAN Program award is to strengthen the program of activities for Young AFCEANs at chapters, and to encourage chapters to create Young AFCEAN programs if they do not already have one. The program will measure the strength, growth and activities of a chapter’s Young AFCEAN program over the period of a full fiscal year. Click Here to read more.

U.S. Naval Institute Essay Contest Awards

About the Award:

The U.S. Naval Institute provides an independent forum for those who dare to read, think, speak and write to advance the professional, literary and scientific understanding of sea power and other issues critical to global security. Each year, the Institute sponsors a number of essay contests. The winners of four of these contests will be recognized at WEST 2018.

2017 Essay Contest Winners:

  2017 Cyber Essay Contest

Sponsored with DXC Technology

Cyber warfare and cybersecurity are the ultimate team sports because they bridge the public and private sectors. The Cyber Essay Contest encouraged authors to let their imaginations run free and identify what the Department of Defense’s cyber priorities (or priority) should be and make the case for them.

First Prize:
LCDR Damien Dodge, USN
“We Need Cyberspace Damage Control”

Second Prize:
CAPT Ramberto “Rambo” Torruella Jr., USN
“Give a Cyber Edge to the Warfighters”

Third Prize:
Maj Scott A. Humr, USMC
“Tactical Cyber Warfare: Breaking the Curse of Tantalus”

  Enlisted Prize Essay Contest

Sponsored with Textron Systems

The Enlisted Prize Essay Contest dared Enlisted personnel in the Sea Services to write on a topic that makes the naval profession stronger. No subject was too large or too small.

First Prize:
CPO Hendrick Simoes, USN
“It Is Time for Digital Deckplate Leadership”

Second Prize:
HM3 Ryan Zieno, USN
“Small Unit Leaders Are Our Backbone”

Third Prizes:
FN David P. Horton, USN
“Restore the Warrior Mentality”

CMDCM Greg Renick, USN
“Why Is the Navy Concerned About Toughness?”

  2017 Marine Corps Essay Contest

Sponsored with Gen Peter Pace, USMC (Ret.), Gen John Allen, USMC (Ret.), and LtGen Wallace Gregson, USMC (Ret.)

The Marine Corps Essay Contest challenged authors to advance new thinking about how the U.S. Marine Corps will tackle the diverse and difficult security challenges of the 21st century. Authors were encouraged to write about the toughest and most difficult issues; the topics everyone knows need addressing but some are hesitant to even acknowledge.

First Prize:
Capt James Skeffington, USMCR
“The Corps Must Refine Warfighting”

Second Prize:
LTJG Daniel Stefanus, USN
“From Wells to Wings”

Third Prize:
1stLt Will McGee, USMC
“The Exercise Has No Clothes”

  2017 Leadership Essay Contest

Sponsored with Dr. J. Phillip London and CACI International

The 2017 Leadership Essay Contest focused on the roles of leadership and character in America’s Sea Services from the junior officer’s perspective.

First Prize:
LCDR Matthew D. Brown, USN
“We Crafted a Charter”

Second Prize:
LCDR Luke Kelvington, USN
“Check Your Ego at the Hatch”

Third Prize:
ENS Timothy Sargent, USCG
“Experiences in Leadership”

Women's Appreciation Award

About the Award:

This award recognizes and honors AFCEA members (male or female) who have gone above and beyond to further the careers of women. AFCEA contributions will be more heavily weighted than professional performance in the decision process. Winners are selected by members of the AFCEA International Membership Committee. The award will be presented at the annual Women's Appreciation Event held at WEST each year. AFCEA staff are no longer eligible for this award. Click Here to read more.

Enlisted Superior Performer Awards

About the Award:

The Enlisted Superior Performer (ESP) Award presented by the U.S. Naval Institute and AFCEA International recognizes the service of those military members who have been selected by their commands for particularly superior service in the past year.  Recipients are awarded one-year memberships in both AFCEA and the U.S. Naval Institute.  This year’s ESPs will be recognized at the WEST 2018 Conference, 6-8 February, at the San Diego Convention Center.  This award presentation has been a feature of this conference for several years. Click Here to read more.