Meet Grissom’s Officer Annual Award Winners for 2023

  • Published
  • By Tech. Sgt. Alexa Culbert

During the February unit training assembly, the Hoosier Wing participated in a number of events and ceremonies. Between a change of command and a base visit by the Fourth Air Force command team, Team Grissom wanted to ensure that one celebration did not go overlooked or forgotten: the unveiling of this year’s wing-level annual award recipients.

Over the course of the next few weeks, the Public Affairs team will release a series of articles highlighting the eight men and women who received wing-level awards during this year’s ceremony. The second, below, highlights the officer winners in the company grade officer and field grade officer categories.

Company Grade Officer of the Year
Capt. Jason Washburn, 434th Operations Group pilot

Washburn spent the majority of 2023 away from Grissom but played an integral role in the mission. He oversaw the aircraft operations relocation during the runway restoration project while leading a team of over 50 personnel, as they operated out of Fort Wayne International Airport. He also flew a high-profile Presidential support refueling mission, volunteered for a multinational joint force exercise and was upgraded to flight commander ahead of his peers.

When he’s not piloting aircraft, he’s on the ground serving his community. He volunteers as a baseball coach, raises money for high school boosters and he regularly mentors high school students who are earning their private pilot’s license.

Field Grade Officer of the Year
Maj. Jason Bireley, 434th Operations Group chief of standards and evaluations

Bireley served as the lead project officer for the aircraft relocation project, and oversaw the relocation of personnel, 11 aircraft and 2 million pounds of equipment to Fort Wayne International Airport, all while executing flight evaluations for 80 crew members, identifying mission shortfalls as a member of the wing inspection team and receiving commendable remarks during his flight evaluation.

In his downtime, Bireley fostered community relations between the base and the local community. He’s a volunteer skate instructor at Park View Ice House and with the Ronald McDonald House charity and uses his experience as prior enlisted to mentor Airman on career and development opportunities.