7th AS Airman selected as AMCs nominee for National Public Service Award

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Callie Norton
  • 62d Airlift Wing Public Affairs

Air Mobility Command announced U.S. Air Force Master Sgt. Eric Peters, 7th Airlift Squadron and 443d Air Expeditionary Squadron first sergeant, as their nominee for the 2023 National Public Service Award, July 27, 2023.

Established by the American Society for Public Administration and National Academy of Public Administration, the National Public Service Award honors individuals within local, state and federal governments, as well as international and public service nonprofit organizations who have made outstanding contributions and whose accomplishments can be viewed as models of public service within and outside the work environment.

Currently deployed to Iraq, Peters is known in the Pacific Northwest and the Middle East for his service within, and outside of the Air Force.

“There are a variety of ways public service helps me personally, but the most profound is the connections you make," said Peters. “I think you get the most out of people when they feel like they belong and are supported.”

Peters recalls a time when he needed to get an Airman home on emergency leave and no Air Force flights were available. By leveraging a relationship fostered through additional service with Canadian counterparts, Peters was able to get the Airman on a plane home right away.

“I wouldn’t have had that relationship if I hadn’t gone out of my comfort zone to meet them and work with them on previous occasions,” said Peters. “These relationships blossom into bigger things too, knowing you have reliable partners to call on when you need help is an incredible thing.”

Adamant about how important public service is to the Air Force and individual growth, Peters shares his enthusiasm with Airmen, encouraging them to seek out opportunities related to their fields of interest.

“The advice I always give my Airmen is to try to align your passions with opportunities to make the base, the Air Force, or the community a better place to be a part of or to live,” said Peters.

Peters volunteers his time to a variety of organizations in the private and public sectors, including the Air Force Sergeants Association, Arkansas Game and Wildlife Commission, U.S. Forest Service, Habitat for Humanity, Uprising Jiu-Jitsu and Operation Warm Heart, to name a few.

“I am humbled to receive this nomination,” said Peters. “Initially, I did not think I would be a good candidate because I have a habit of looking at present and future issues and objectives and I often don’t take the time to reflect on the things I have done.”

Peters has led a remarkable career spanning 14 years, expertly balancing care for Airmen, mission execution and public service.

“When we need a human to lead, whether it be a production superintendent to manage the launch of 20 C-17 aircraft simultaneously to all corners of the globe or a first sergeant to wrap their arms around an entire squadron, Eric is that human,” said Lt. Col. Zachary Magnin, former 62d Aircraft Maintenance Squadron commander.