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Kentucky Airman earns top flight-safety award

Col. Greg Nelson, commander of the 123rd Airlift Wing, presents Lt. Col. Todd Lally with the 2011 Air National Guard Outstanding Individual for Flight Safety Award during a ceremony at the Kentucky Air National Guard Base in Louisville, Ky., on May 19, 2012. Lally, chief of the wing safety office, earned the honor for his exceptional dedication to the safety community, according to the National Guard Bureau. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Maxwell Rechel)

Col. Greg Nelson, commander of the 123rd Airlift Wing, presents Lt. Col. Todd Lally with the 2011 Air National Guard Outstanding Individual for Flight Safety Award during a ceremony at the Kentucky Air National Guard Base in Louisville, Ky., on May 19, 2012. Lally, chief of the wing safety office, earned the honor for his exceptional dedication to the safety community, according to the National Guard Bureau. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Maxwell Rechel)

KENTUCKY AIR NATIONAL GUARD BASE, LOUISVILLE, Ky -- The National Guard Bureau has selected a Kentucky Air Guardsman for a prestigious flight-safety award.

Lt. Col. Todd Lally, chief of the 123rd Airlift Wing Safety Office, is the 2011 recipient of the Air National Guard Outstanding Individual for Flight Safety Award.

The award is given annually to the top safety professional in the Air National Guard, according to Col. John D. Slocum, director of safety for the National Guard Bureau in Washington, D.C.

"Colonel Lally has far surpassed his peers in showing his exemplary commitment to safety," Slocum said in announcing the award. "His far-reaching contributions in leading various Safety Investigation Boards has helped improve procedural operations across the Air Force.

"Colonel Lally has proven himself as being dedicated to safety, thus enriching the well-being of those around him."

Slocum added that Lally's selection is a "direct reflection of the professionalism and culture" of the 123rd Airlift Wing that "sets the bar for other wings and safety professionals in the Air National Guard."

Lally joined the Kentucky Air National Guard as an enlisted fuels specialist in 1988. He later cross-trained to become a C-130 loadmaster before earning a bachelor's degree in aerospace studies. Lally was commissioned as a second lieutenant in 1994 and completed undergraduate pilot training the same year.

He has deployed numerous times to the U.S. Central Command Area of Responsibility in support of operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom; and to Panama in support of counter-drug and U.S. Embassy-support missions.

Lally became the Air Operations Officer for the Kentucky Air National Guard's 123rd Contingency Response Group in 2009 before assuming his current post this year.

As an aircraft mishap investigator, Lally has investigated Class A, B and C mishaps in Afghanistan and the United States. His latest investigation involved the Class A mishap of a remotely piloted aircraft that collided mid-air with a C-130H at a forward operating base in Afghanistan. He also served as investigating officer of the 13-member Safety Investigation Board.

In his civilian life, Lally serves as a pilot with United Parcel Service in Louisville.