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Air Force recognizes outstanding real estate professionals

WASHINGTON (AFPN) -- At the annual Air Force Real Estate Awards ceremony held during the Air Force Real Estate Workshop on Oct. 19, two Air Force real estate professionals and one real estate office were recognized for their accomplishments.

Karen Pate, a real property accountable officer from Cannon Air Force Base, N. M., was recognized for winning a Federal Real Property Association, or FRPA, national award for her role as a mentor and training advocate for real property officers throughout the federal real property community.

The Air Force Outstanding Real Estate Professional Award was presented to Katherine Scoggins, a real property officer from Keesler AFB, Miss., who played a key role in the recovery of the base in the wake of Hurricane Katrina.

Finally, the 718th Civil Engineering Squadron from Kadena Air Base, Japan, received the Air Force Outstanding Real Estate Office Award for their performance.

In addition to the Air Force Real Estate Awards, outstanding performers from the Air Force Real Property Agency were also recognized during the ceremony.

Debra Bahr, Michael Swart and Sigmund Csicsery from AFRPA's Sacramento office were awarded agency honors for their achievements while Richard Solander was awarded the Alan K. Olsen Award for his efforts to make former Air Force property in Southern California available for reuse.

William C. Anderson, assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Installations, Environment and Logistics, recognized award winners for their significant accomplishments. Other guests included Kathleen Ferguson, deputy Air Force civil engineer and Kathryn Halvorson, director of AFRPA.

"These are hard working, dedicated people," Mr. Anderson said. "They deserve the recognition they've received."

The Air Force Real Estate Workshop, which brought in real estate professionals from across the Air Force, coincided with the FRPA national conference held Oct. 17-18. FRPA, a national organization supporting and promoting professionalism among real property executives, managers and vendors in the public and private sectors, hosted real property professionals from across the nation to discuss federal real property issues.

The Air Force took the opportunity to discuss its new real property business line at one of the panels. Together with her counterparts from the Army and Navy, Ms. Halvorson, director of AFRPA, discussed the agency's drive to establish Enhanced Use Leasing, or EUL, at active bases to capitalize on underutilized property. Through EUL, private entities would be able to lease underutilized Air Force assets in return for consideration equal to the assets' fair market value.

"Enhanced use leasing gives us an exciting opportunity," Ms. Halvorson said. "This provides a way to return value to our airmen and the American taxpayer."

The Alan K. Olsen Award is named for the former director of the Air Force Base Conversion Agency (the predecessor of AFRPA) from 1993 to 1996. Mr. Olsen was particularly sensitive to the needs of communities impacted by base closure and realignment, and worked hard to get former Air Force property back into the hands of the community so that they may use it to recover from a base closure.