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Kentucky Air Guardsman recognized by Office of Personnel Management

Col. Jeff Wilkinson, vice commander of the 123rd Airlift Wing, presents a certificate of recognition to Staff Sgt. Windy Wagner, chief of information protection, at the Kentucky Air National Guard Base in Louisville, Ky., Jan 8, 2015. Wagner was recognized for providing outstanding support to the U.S. Office of Personnel Management in its execution of security clearance investigations. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Master Sgt. Phil Speck)

Col. Jeff Wilkinson, vice commander of the 123rd Airlift Wing, presents a certificate of recognition to Staff Sgt. Windy Wagner, chief of information protection, at the Kentucky Air National Guard Base in Louisville, Ky., Jan 8, 2015. Wagner was recognized for providing outstanding support to the U.S. Office of Personnel Management in its execution of security clearance investigations. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Master Sgt. Phil Speck)

KENTUCKY AIR NATIONAL GUARD BASE, LOUISVILLE, Ky. -- Staff Sgt. Windy Wagner has been recognized by the U.S. Office of Personnel Management for the outstanding support she provides to the Federal Investigative Services in the execution of security clearance background interviews.

Wagner is the Kentucky Air National Guard's Chief of Information Protection. Her job is to ensure the security of information and monitor the implementation of Air Force information policies and programs for the 123rd Airlift Wing. As part of that work, she manages security background investigations for members of the wing.

To help OPM, Wagner assisted field agents in reserving locations on base that were private and comfortable in which to conduct national security background interviews, according to Col. Jeff Wilkinson, the wing's vice commander. With more than 50 interviews being conducted each year, Wagner is constantly helping field agents complete their investigations, he added.

Wilkinson noted that Wagner often provides this assistance on her own time, above and beyond the requirements of her job description.

"These efforts directly enhance our overall national security posture by allowing these security interviews to be conducted in an expedient and professional manner," said Scott Benson, special agent-in-charge of the OPM's St. Louis Investigative Field Office.

Some of the interviews Wagner facilitated weren't even for members of the Air Guard, but for personnel from other government agencies. To assist with those cases, Wagner conducted preliminary background checks so the personnel were cleared to enter the installation.

Wagner also has been key in ensuring that members whose open clearance investigations are about to expire get fast-tracked, saving OPM weeks of work that would otherwise need to be re-accomplished.