INCIRLIK AIR BASE, Turkey --
Shelia Bacon, 39th Air Base Wing sexual assault prevention and response victim advocate, was selected as the U.S. Air Forces in Europe and Air Forces Africa 2016 National Image, Inc. Civilian Meritorious Service Award winner, here.
Bacon was recognized for the work she accomplished October 1, 2014, through September 30, 2015.
“Winning this award truly reflects that Team Incirlik is, ‘Larger than Life,’” said Bacon. “Winning the award actually has nothing directly to do with my personal accomplishments. The recognition is based on the 39th ABW's ongoing commitment to serve the active-duty military, family and the community, not during times of comfort and convenience, but rather in times of challenge and crisis.”
The award distinguishes civilian employees who have supported their component mission, overseas contingency operations, or whose attributes best epitomized the qualities and core values of their respective component.
Bacon contributed to the Incirlik Air Base mission by uniting 35 international military members and civilians by creating a weekly community workshop focused on language exchange. Additionally, she trained 43 victim advocates to advocate for victims’ rights and also educated 300 base members on active bystander roles.
Bacon says knowing she can help one victim or survivor makes her job very significant.
“Choosing to serve as a proactive voice for victims and survivors of violence is an amazing job,” said Bacon. “Understanding some insights into this diverse and resilient community is vital to be able to share. This job allows me to deliver services to a diverse community, plus support a cultural heritage encouraging anti-violence, prevention and sexual assault prevention to all.”
Capt. Claire Carlos, 39th ABW sexual assault response coordinator and Bacon’s supervisor, says she is elated and fortunate to be working with an expert like Bacon.
“Ms. Bacon has been part of the SAPR program for more than 20 years and her dedication to the program is incomparable,” said Carlos. “Her work ethic has had a tremendous impact to the victims and victim advocates she has worked with over the years. Her no. 1 goal each day is to ensure victims never feel alone and they get the necessary help and resources they need.”
Moving forward, Bacon says she will carry on in the fight against sexual assault.
“I will continue to forge equality and diversity within the community as well as address violence-related issues,” said Bacon. “I am a servant for victims and survivors. I know and will do my part to eliminate sexual assault.”