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Kadena's '5-star' Services programs among best in Air Force

KADENA AIR BASE, Japan -- Kadena's fitness, library, outdoor recreation and golf programs were recently honored with "Five-Star" recognition by the Air Force, honoring them as among the best in the Air Force.

The Air Force recognized 87 programs service-wide on March 3 as having a high level of quality and achievement, but only Kadena won the 5-star crown in each category.

"It's a reflection of hard work by talented managers and dedicated staffs," said Col. Guy Palumbo, 18th Services Squadron commander.

The program recognizes excellence in five areas: operations, programs, training, facilities and customer service.  An activity must achieve 90 percent of the total point value for each category in order to receive the Five Star Recognition. 

"The real winners are the troops and families here in the Kadena community," said Maynard Satsky, Kadena library director.  "To have every one of these programs on Kadena recognized as among the very best in the Air Force speaks volumes." 

The Five Star Recognition Program was started in 1998, after Headquarters Air Force Services Agency realized the need for a formal fitness recognition program. 

As a result of combined efforts from base, major command and agency members, the Five Star Fitness Center Recognition Program was established in 2002.  Following the initial success of the program with fitness, libraries established a Five Star Recognition Program in 2003, followed by outdoor recreation, aero clubs and bowling centers in 2004, and golf in 2005. 

No bowling program has yet to earn five stars, but Kadena's Emery Lanes was the Air Force Bowling Program of the Year for last year.