Leading Aircraftwoman Cindy Whitaker has been rewarded for her agility, resilience and tenacious sense of service.

She was recently awarded No. 87 Squadron’s Max Cowin Award.

Each year, the squadron presents the award to the person or small team that most significantly contributes to the squadron’s reputation, value and capability in support of Air Force’s mission.

Leading Aircraftwoman Whitaker is an air intelligence analyst – operational intelligence at the squadron’s air mobility tactical intelligence flight.

She was recognised for the creation of robust intelligence de-brief procedures that were compatible with Air Mobility Group aircrew COVID-19 quarantine requirements.

“I was very surprised but also honoured to receive the Max Cowin Award,” Leading Aircraftwoman Whitaker said.

“I am lucky to work with some very driven, motivated and smart people that have made amazing contributions in the squadron, so I was very surprised that I was selected for this award.

“I joined Air Force in January 2017. 

“It is something that’s always interested me and I thought it would be an opportunity to do something different, challenge myself and gain new experiences.”

The enhanced de-briefing procedures have been used across Air Mobility Group, and could be used by other force element groups in the future.

Throughout this year, Leading Aircraftwoman Whitaker also continued to step into roles above her assigned rank level, performing short-notice work and lead intelligence duties to a high standard. 

No. 87 Squadron Commanding Officer Wing Commander Darrell May said Leading Aircraftwoman Whitaker was a worthy recipient of this year’s award.

“Leading Aircraftwoman Whitaker brought a positive approach to the workplace and showed a willingness to step into unfamiliar roles to assist her team,” Wing Commander May said.

“I was impressed that she not only took on higher responsibilities, but developed the means of improving and adapting No. 87 Squadron intelligence processes to better support Air Mobility Group.”