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Air Force Airman and Chickasaw citizen Kennedy D. St. Clair was recently named 2023 Tinker Air Force Base Airman of the Year.

The former Ada, Oklahoma, resident is an Air Force outbound assignment technician at the Oklahoma City Air Force base. In this role, St. Clair’s duties include processing permanent change of station orders across seven of the 10 U.S. major commands, five wings and 77 squadrons, providing support to 26,000 military and civilian personnel.

It is a big job.

Her Air Force biography says she “manages ten assignment personnel systems to ensure accuracy” and “serves as the central figure in the outbound assignments section for both Air Force Material Command and Air Commandant Command at Tinker AFB.”

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In addition to her day job, St. Clair carves out time to perform volunteer work. In fact, she says it may have been this aspect of her life that helped her achieve Airman of the Year honors.

She devoted 300 hours to lead 21 airmen at five events that raised $1,300 for morale-raising efforts. This earned her 27th Special Operations Wing (SOW) Air Force Sergeants Associate Chapter’s Airman of the Quarter recognition.

St. Clair also donated her time to serve as treasurer of the base’s booster club.

She was selected by the 27th SOW leadership as their “Wing Training Day” committee lead, in which she instilled “social resiliency” for more than 5,000 airmen within 26 squadrons.

The Air Force defines social resiliency as “the ability to withstand, recover, and grow in the face of stressors and changing demands.”

The number of times St. Clair has moved since joining the military (three times in five years) might be enough to test most people’s ability to withstand, recover and grow in the face of stressors and changing demands.

Following basic training at Lackland Air Force Base in Texas in December 2019, she was sent to Keesler Air Force Base in Mississippi. In February of the following year, she was moved to Cannon Air Force Base in New Mexico. In May 2023, she was transferred again to her current assignment at Tinker Air Force Base.

St. Clair says the structured military life suits her well as do her duties working in Tinker’s personnel department.

“The job fits me,” she said. “It gives me an opportunity for growth, both professionally and personally. My job is human resources related. I out process people who are changing duty stations. There are five or six different sections in personnel I can work in so there are definitely a lot of areas for growth.”

St. Clair is aiming to complete her undergraduate work in business administration, looking at it as a benefit in her current position as well as a roadmap to possible future opportunities.

“It helps with my job and as a backup plan to perhaps one day use it working with the Chickasaw Nation,” she said.

St. Clair is the granddaughter of Adam Walker, the first recipient of the Silver Feather Award in 1999, and Viola Walker.

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