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City of Peoria Press Release

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Peoria Earns Defense Dept. Exceptional Service Award

Department of Defense Recognizes Public and Private Sectors’ Military Support Efforts


Phoenix, Ariz.  (April 13, 2007) – Allison Barber, Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Public Affairs and founder of America Supports You presented the “Office of the Secretary of Defense Exceptional Public Service Award” to City of Peoria Mayor Barrett during a luncheon event at the Arizona Club Thursday, April 12.  Barber also expressed her appreciation to representatives from Cox Communications for their outstanding support of military members and their families and for their current efforts, working with the City of Peoria, to carry the Pentagon Channel, a television service that provides military news and information to members of the military community and general public.  Government officials, business leaders and members of local Arizona nonprofit groups were briefed on America Supports You, a Department of Defense program that highlights and recognizes citizens’ support for members of the U.S. Armed Services and their families. 

The “Office of the Secretary of Defense Exceptional Public Service Award” was established to recognize non-career Federal employees, private citizens and foreign nationals for their contribution, assistance or support of activities for the U.S. Armed Services.  The award consists of a bronze medal, a lapel pin and a signed citation.

The citation reads in part:

“The City of Peoria, Arizona has distinguished itself through exceptional public service in support of the Armed Forces of the United States, through its work with The Pentagon Channel and its support of the America Supports You program, which it joined in 2005.  Peoria was the first city in Arizona to broadcast the Pentagon Channel live, and the city is currently leading an effort to make the channel available statewide. The City of Peoria played an instrumental role in encouraging the state of Arizona to officially proclaim its support for the America Supports You program and the Pentagon Channel and helped the Arizona Chamber of Commerce to become the first chamber to join the America Supports You team.”

"We ask the men and women serving in our military to face the supreme sacrifice every day - those brave individuals deserve our support,” said Mayor Barnett. “This partnership between Peoria and Cox Communications is an example of how business and government can work together to show that support - launching the Pentagon Channel statewide is going to be a great thing for Arizona's military service members and their families."

Since joining America Supports You team in 2005, the City of Peoria has undertaken many community and state initiatives to express Arizona citizens’ support for members of their military community.  Most recently, the City of Peoria entered into negotiations with Cox Communications to make the Pentagon Channel statewide on the Cox system.  

"We appreciate Cox Communications’ outstanding support for Arizona’s military community and their efforts to make the Pentagon Channel available statewide," said Barber.  "Their support helps us fulfill our mission of providing timely military news and information to the U.S. Armed Forces, and their families, especially members of our National Guard and Reserve who often live far away from large military facilities.”

Cox Communications, in addition to their initiative with the City of Peoria and Pentagon Channel, has provided families from Luke Force Base the chance to send their deployed loved ones streaming video/post cards, and last year, Cox partnered with Arizona-based America Supports You homefront group “Packages from Home” to send more than six hundred care packages to deployed members.  In addition, Cox Communications launched the “Partnership for Youth Success Program” with the U.S. Army to help promote career success among Army soldiers, opening up future employment opportunities at Cox once their military deployment is complete.  Executives of Cox Communications were in attendance at the luncheon and were recognized for their outstanding support of the U.S. military

Barber also presented Representative John Nelson, an enthusiastic supporter of the America Supports You program, with a Department of Defense jacket in appreciation for his work in the legislature to strengthen the mission of Arizona’s military installations, as well as his tireless efforts to ensure the availability of the Pentagon Channel for the citizens of Peoria and his recent efforts to make it available statewide.

“Our goal is to make every citizen in Arizona aware of the work of our military personnel and about the America Supports You program,” said Representative Nelson.  “The military community in Arizona is large and having up-to-the-minute news and information is important to many of our citizens, especially the families of our deployed members.”

Also participating in the day’s event were two Arizona-based America Supports You homefront nonprofit groups:  Operation Stocking Stuffer and Operation Homefront (Arizona Chapter).  In 2006, Americans sent 6,000 pounds of care packages, including 1,300 Christmas stockings, to Iraq through Operation Stocking Stuffer. The organization also sent Easter baskets and gift boxes for Independence Day.  This year, Operation Stocking Stuffer also delivered Easter baskets to the Wounded Warrior Center in San Diego and to the families of deployed Marines. Operation Homefront is a grassroots, volunteer-based community solution where the needs of troops and military families with deployed service members are matched with the charitable outreach of local volunteers and businesses. Begun in San Diego shortly after September 11, 2001, the organization now has 27 chapters throughout the U.S. in response to urgent requests from military families.  


About America Supports You: America Supports You is an ongoing, nationwide program organized by the Department of Defense to showcase Americans’ support for the men and women of the Armed Forces and their families. Since its launch in November of 2004, the America Supports You program has welcomed over 250 homefront organizations and more than 35 corporations to the team. Many America Supports You supporters support the troops through letter writing, care packages, helping the wounded when they return home, assisting military families, sending an email or kind gesture—to learn more about how you can support military personnel visit www.AmericaSupportsYou.mil.


Cox Communications Arizona: Cox Communications, the third largest cable provider and a Fortune 500 company, is a multi-service broadband communications company serving nearly 3 million residential and business product subscribers in Arizona (a product subscriber represents an individual service purchased by a customer). In the Phoenix area, Cox serves more than 2.5 million product subscribers. In Southern Arizona, Cox serves more than 350,000 product subscribers. Cox’s 15,000-mile hybrid fiber coaxial cable network throughout Phoenix and Southern Arizona provides homes and businesses with digital television, high speed Internet, home networking, high-definition television and telephone service. During the last four years, Cox has topped nine J.D. Power and Associates’ studies of customer satisfaction for residential telephone, video and high speed Internet, in addition to commercial data. Cox Media is responsible for the sale of cable advertising throughout Arizona. Cox Communications is a wholly owned subsidiary of Cox Enterprises Inc and serves approximately 6 million customers nationwide. Additional information about Cox in Arizona is available at www.cox.com/arizona.