VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. –
Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Army Eugene Collins presented the 2016 Secretary of the Army Environmental Award for Cultural Resource Management in the small installation category to Maj. Gen. Timothy P. Williams, the Adjutant General of Virginia, and the staffs of the Virginia National Guard Environmental Office and Camp Pendleton Collective Training Center Aug. 31, 2017, in Virginia Beach, Virginia. The award is the highest honor in the field of environmental science and sustainability conferred by the Army.
“Camp Pendleton has reached a milestone,” Collins said. “You have bridged the gap between preserving the past and establishing energy security and resiliency, all while ensuring environmental stewardship and support to military readiness.
“What you have done is certainly not a small accomplishment,” Collins said. “This award is the Army’s highest honor for environmental leadership and it recognizes the Army’s best demonstrated environmental practices…I applaud your dedication, I applaud your success and I challenge you to keep it coming.”
“Today is a culmination of years of effort,” Williams explained. “We have advanced the cause of taking this installation, this tiny little place here in Virginia Beach, and really pulling it into today.
“The effort that our environmental team and our energy team are putting in to this place to turn it into a world-class training installation is extraordinary,” Williams added. “To prepare and train our forces, both Army and Air Force, is truly job one – training our Soldiers and Airmen for the fight.
“While we’ve made great strides and the team should be justifiably proud of themselves, time is not on our side,” he continued. “We have so much more work to do and so many more things to accomplish.”
Following the award presentation, Collins received a briefing on the history of Camp Pendleton, as well as future projects planned for the facility. He then took a tour of Camp Pendleton and got a first-hand look at some of its historic buildings.
Camp Pendleton is a state-owned, 328-acre installation which provides training facilities for National Guard units, as well as all other Department of Defense, active duty and reserve units as well as public safety organizations. It houses the Virginia Commonwealth ChalleNGe Youth Academy, the Virginia Air National Guard’s 203rd RED HORSE Squadron, the Virginia Army National Guard’s 529th Combat Sustainment Support Battalion and Troop A and Troop C, 2nd Battalion, 183rd Cavalry Regiment.
The post features a multi-purpose training facility, administrative buildings, conference facilities, barracks, classrooms, dining facilities, a live-fire qualification range and nine different virtual trainers as well as a chapel, fitness center, distance learning center, wooded training areas, helipad, land navigation course, airfield damage repair training site, beach and amphibious landing site.
Established in 1912 as the State Military Reservation, Camp Pendleton was greatly expanded during WWI by the Navy and in WWII by the Army in support of national defense. The Camp Pendleton State Military Reservation Historic District was recognized with National Register of Historic Places listing in 2005.
The Virginia National Guard Environmental Office partners with Camp Pendleton Collective Training Center staff to support installation development and mission use consistent with preservation of Camp Pendleton’s historic significance and the Virginia National Guard’s history.