The Department of Defense announced the 2023 winners of the Secretary of Defense Maintenance Awards. These awards are presented annually to recognize outstanding achievements in weapon systems and military equipment maintenance.

The Rear Admiral Grace M. Hopper Award for Software Maintenance Excellence recognizes the top organic software activity that, through its mission accomplishments, provided extraordinary capability for operational units supported. The award is named after RDML Grace Hopper, a pioneer of computer programming who popularized the idea of machine-independent programming languages. This year’s winner is the 76th Software Engineering Group from the Oklahoma City Air Logistics Complex, Tinker Air Force Base.

The Department also selected the Sustainment Training, Advice, and Assistance of Foreign Military Forces Awards. The awards recognize teams or organizations that have excelled at providing training, advice, and assistance to the militaries of developing countries as part of U.S. foreign policy goals. In the Ministerial Category, the winner is the Ministry of Defense Resident Advisor Team to Kyiv, Ukraine, from the Institute for Security Governance, Defense Security Cooperation Agency. The operational category winner of this year’s award is the 95th Transportation Company, 498th Combat Sustainment Support Battalion, Camp Carrol, Republic of Korea.

The Robert T. Mason Award for Depot Maintenance Excellence recognizes exceptional quality and achievement in Department of Defense depot-level maintenance programs. It is awarded for outstanding mission accomplishment, effective support to warfighters, and innovative logistics processes. This award commemorates Robert T. Mason, a former Assistant Deputy Under Secretary of Defense for Maintenance Policy, Programs and Resources, who championed the Department’s depot-level maintenance program. The Submarine Maintenance, Modernization, and Overhaul Program at Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard and Intermediate Maintenance Facility
is this year’s recipient.

Six field-level award winners were selected in three categories:  small, medium, and large. The small category winners are Forward Support Company, 84th Engineer Battalion, Schofield Barracks, Hawaii; and 912th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron, Edwards Air Force Base, California. Winners from the medium category included Marine Aviation Logistics Squadron 39, 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing, I Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Pendleton, California; and Southeast Regional Maintenance Center, Naval Station Mayport, Florida.  Large category winners were 1st Maintenance Battalion, 1st Marine Logistics Group, I Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Pendleton, California; and 18th Maintenance Group, Kadena Air Base, Japan.  

From the six field-level winners, only one will be selected as this year’s recipient of the highly coveted Phoenix Award. Phoenix Award winners are considered to be the best of the best and held in very high esteem as the top-performing field-level maintenance unit in the Department. The Phoenix Award winner will be announced at the annual DoD Maintenance Awards Banquet in December.  

Units will formally be presented their awards at a ceremony December 19, at the San Diego Convention Center in San Diego, California. The ceremony is held in conjunction with the annual DoD Maintenance Symposium.  

To learn more about the Secretary of Defense Maintenance Awards and the DoD Maintenance Symposium, you can visit www.sae.org/dod.