NY Air Guard NCO of the Year Published March 13, 2017 3-13-17 -- Stewart Air National Guard Base, Newburgh, NY (03/13/2017) —Air National Guard Technical Sgt. Robert Kurg, a member of the 105th Airlift Wing and a Middletown resident, has been named New York Air National Guard NCO of the Year. He is now in the running for the National Outstanding Airman of the Year Award. Kurg, who has served in the Air Force and Air National Guard since 1994, is an Integrated Instruments and Flight Controls Systems Craftsman who repairs avionics systems on the C-17 Globemaster III strategic airlifters flown by the 105th Airlift Wing, based at Stewart Air National Guard Base. He is a physical therapist in civilian life. "Robert Kurg is a talented and dedicated member of the Avionics section who is thoroughly committed to the success of the 105th Airlift Wing. His superlative efforts have directly contributed to the unit’s Worldwide Maintenance Departure Reliability rating of 95.4% for the past year,” said Senior Master Sgt. Ira Fleischer, the maintenance group avionics element supervisor. What is so impressive about Rob is how he jungles his duties as an aircraft avionics shop supervisor and his off duty obligation as a husband, father of three boys and caregiver for his father and sister,” said Chief Master Sgt. Brian Hetherly the 105th Maintenance Group Superintendent. The NCO of the Year Award recognizes outstanding junior noncommissioned officers from across the 5,800-member New York Air National Guard. The winner of that award then goes on to compete against representatives from the other 53 state Air National Guards for the best in the Air Guard honors. Professionalism, skill and commitment to the mission all play a role in selecting the honoree, said New York Air National Guard Command Chief Amy Giaquinto. The New York National Guard is the largest Air National Guard in the United States. The New York Air Guard's five wings fly the C-17 strategic airlifter, the HH-60 Pavehawk rescue helicopter and HC-130 search and rescue aircraft, as well as the MQ-9 remotely piloted aircraft, along with the LC-130 "Skibirds" flown by the 109th Airlift Wing. The New York Air National Guard Airmen are also responsible for the air defense of the United States east of the Mississippi. New York Air National Guard members also respond to state emergencies when called upon by Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo. Kurg enlisted in the United States Air Force on 7 June, 1993. He graduated from the bomber auto-pilot and instruments course at Lowery Air Force Base, Colorado, in February 1994 and was assigned to the 28th Bomb Squadron, Dyess Air Force Base, Texas, as a B-1B Auto-Pilot and Instruments Specialist. He also served at Mountain Home Air Force Base in Idaho. He joined the Colorado Air National Guard in 2000 and in 2001 he transferred to the 105th Airlift Wing’s 105th Maintenance Squadron. Kurg has deployed three times during his career. In 1996 he deployed to Moron Air Base, Spain in support of the first transcontinental effectiveness assessment of the B-1 bomber. Additionally, in 1997 he deployed to Lajes Field in Portugal, to support the B-1 for the Global Power Mission. Finally, in 1998 he was part of the Expeditionary Force Experiment at Eglin Air Force Base, Florida, to explore emerging technologies, procedures and requirements. Kurg holds an Associates of Science in Physical Therapy from Orange County Community College and an Associates of Applied Science in Avionics Technology, from the Community College of the Air Force. His awards include the Air Force Commendation Medal, the Air Force Achievement Medal and was named Stewart Air National Guard Base NCO of the Year in 2016.