Awards Ceremony, 2014

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To the community of UFOP: StarBase 118,

It's my privilege and my pleasure to present the fleetwide award ceremony to you this year. The ceremony is one of my favorite events of the year, possibly my favorite event, because of the special recognition that goes along with each of the awards you see here.

This year, 2014, was one of the most tumultuous in the group's recent history, with several decommissionings, CO switches, and the like – but I think it's apropos that we end out the year with the creation of a new group, SB118 Ops, and one of the strongest award ceremonies ever. It's been a tough year for many of you, but the accolades you've been recognized with here demonstrate not only the good qualities the awards honor, but also your perseverance. Through it all, you've shown us what excellent writing, top-notch character creation, and sharp, clever plotting can do, and you've made this community stronger as a result. No, even more basically than that: You've made this community.

You'll see plenty of fresh faces and plenty of familiar faces among the award recipients in this ceremony. I was gratified to see many ensigns and junior lieutenants nominated for – and winning! – the duty post and special awards. You, as our newest members, represent the future of the group, and I urge you to take that mantle seriously: These awards are our way of saying "thank you for what you're doing, and that we'd really like to see more of it." There are a few older names, too, and to those folks I say "thank you," too – but in a different way. It's easy to slip into an easy routine and forget what it's like to be an ensign, or to receive your first promotion, or to be a department head for the first time, but these writers remind us all that you can still learn something at every step, and – whether young or old, fresh or familiar, experienced or green – these awards are our thanks for what each of you do.

One more note before you get at the awards: This year, UFOP: StarBase 118 turned twenty years old. All of you are now part of the history of this group, and while I almost hesitate to call it that – "history" carries a connotation of old and static, no longer important – I want you each to recognize that your achievements in this ceremony and everything you've done all year long have made it possible for this ceremony to take place, and for the group to turn twenty at all. Again, you make this community, and, without further ado, I present to you one of the strongest ways the community can thank you.

-- Capt. Cassandra Egan Manno

Duty Post Awards

We begin with the awards presented to members of our fleet who most fully realize the duty dosts in which their character sims. The nominations in these categories are reviewed by a panel of five staff members, two commanders and three members ranked captain or above.

The Prantares Ribbon

The Prantares Ribbon

Awarded to those medical officers who has moved beyond competence to display a true gift for the healing arts in the context of space medicine. The officers given this award should display the ability to keep a steady hand in the often hazardous conditions in which they must practice, as well as the willingness to risk their own life to save the lives of others.

Shar'wyn Foster, USS Atlantis - presented by Raj Blueheart

Dr Foster is the most meticulous physician ever to serve on the Atlantis. Nothing escapes him, not even the annual physicals - and no one is exempt. His methods are very up to date and the scientific basis behind some of his treatment is very sound. Despite the fact that this is a sci-fi based game, he nevertheless plays his character as a true to life doctor which gives his posts that special glow. He is the best medical officer Starfleet has seen yet, and is deserving of the Prantares Ribbon. Congratulations, Dr Shar'Wyn Foster!

The Natasha Yar Pin

The Natasha Yar Pin
Named after the Chief of Security of the USS Enterprise-D, killed in the line of duty, this award is given to those Security officers who have gone above and beyond the call of duty in protecting and preserving the lives of their crewmates, even at risk to their own.

Tyler Kelly, USS Columbia - presented by Ben Livingston

The crew of USS Columbia has a knack for getting into trouble. Fortunately, Tyler Kelly has a knack for getting them back out. Kelly's writer always does so in spectacular fashion, breathing life into scenes and storylines while neglecting neither the development of his character nor the IC consequences of each action. Scenes of particular note include the violent jerk-reaction of destroying a PADD to prevent dangerous captives from going free as well as a struggle to the death in hand to hand combat. This year, Columbia faced tremendous threats from internal security breaches - arson, attempted assassinations, and hostile bridge takeovers among them. Each of these piled onto the heap of the security department's troubles, but Kelly gracefully -- and dramatically -- dispatched each. Kelly's actions always fit within and serve the overarching ship plot and the needs of other characters. Along the way, he gives the crew a sense of what is involved in the ship security, issuing security reports for our perusal and welcoming aboard new officers as he grants their security clearance. I am very proud to present Tyler Kelly with this year's Natasha Yar Pin.

The Voyager Medallion

The Voyager Medallion
Named after the USS Voyager, this award is presented to those Operations officers who have shown great skill in keeping a starship in working order despite near-impossible circumstances. The officers receiving this award have advanced the field of Operations, making sure duty rosters, provisions, gear, and even recreation time are available... no matter what.

Ian Connory, USS Columbia - presented by Ben Livingston

A ship is a very complex system, and it's our Operations department that keeps all those pieces moving in perfect order. Ian Connory plays a pivotal role in this, always ensuring that other departments have the resources they need. He also works closely with Columbia's mission pod. He takes a hands-on approach to problem solving, investigating issues in person and coordinating with other departments to get them fixed. A lesser operations officer might be content sit by and monitor situations, but that's not Ian Connory.
Connory's writer places Ian on the front lines of plot advancement, developing challenging, realistic situations for the crew to deal with. Who among us would have guessed what a menace livestock could be? Sick, crowded cows are just one example of a plot driven by Ian's writer, and it brought the crew a better understanding of the problems that even the "mundane" can bring. For making us all constantly aware of the realities of life aboard a starship, and for flawlessly keeping his crew well-equipped and ready for anything, I hereby present Ian Connory the Voyager Medallion.

The Sisko Tactical Cross

The Sisko Tactical Cross
This award is given to those Tactical officers who have shown cunning and bravery in battle. Master strategists, and experts in targeting and shield power distribution, these officers have done the impossible to save their ship and the lives of its crew.

Vitor Silveira, USS Columbia - presented by Ben Livingston

For years, Vitor Silveira was the tactical officer who'd never fired a weapon. He also proved that there's so much more to the role than locking on phasers. Silveira is a vital part of the ship's crew, always analyzing the situation and ensuring that a threat to the ship is dispatched. This often requires uniquely creative solutions that point to his understanding that war is an extension of politics by other means. In other words, he finds solutions that advance the goals of the larger mission.
When it does come time to fire, Silveira's writer takes a lead role and ensures that other departments have a chance to get into the action. These sims are always dramatic, always well-written, and always leave his readers on the edge of their seats -- which is precisely what combat should entail. Whether using asteroids for target practice, sending out shuttles to compensate for inoperable sensors, or enacting one of his ingenious plans, Vitor Silveira has the heart of a tactical officer. This officer cares for the well-being of his fellow officers, and he stops at nothing to ensure their safety. For constantly exhibiting all of these traits, I am proud to present Vitor Silveira with the Sisko Tactical Cross.

The Phoenix Award

The Phoenix Award
Named for the vessel that legendary engineer Zefram Cochrane piloted during his historic first warp flight, this award goes to those Engineering officers who continue this tradition of excellence in the field of engineering. By performing their tasks with enthusiasm, imagination and diligence, by managing to make their equipment perform above and beyond its rated capacities, the officers meriting this award further the mission of their ship by their superior know-how. In short, miracle workers.

Gwen Gardener, USS Atlantis - presented by Raj Blueheart

From the beginning of her career with the Atlantis, Lt Gwen Gardener has proven her skills at simming an engineer with real engineering skills, and has single-handedly run Engineering since its recommissioning in February of this year. She has come up with a fun decontamination program, upgraded the ship's psychotic EMH to a Mark IV, designed yet another fun-themed Carnivale holoprogram for shore leave, and came up with a state-of-the-art prosthetic leg and arm for crew members, a mechanical arm for Commander Dickens, with great detail put into the bells and whistles included in her invention, showcasing the imaginative details typical of Gwen's innovations. She is an exemplary engineering officer, and highly deserving of the Phoenix Award. Congratulations, Lt Gwen Gardener!

The Cochrane Award

The Cochrane Award
Given to those Science officers who have contributed greatly to the advance of science in the midst of their Starfleet career, by staying knowledgeable about their field, participating in the community of science, but most importantly, by placing their knowledge at the service of their ship and its mission.

Tarsii Asmara, USS Victory - presented by Raj Blueheart and Nugra

from Blueheart: Ever since he came on board, Lt Tarsii Asmara has been nothing but impressive. Especially given the fact that not only does he write well, but he does so in a language that is not his native tongue. His posts are detailed and showcases his vast knowledge in science, and for this, he is deserving of the Cochrane Award. Congratulations, Lt Tarsii Asmara! You are nothing short of spectacular!
from Nugra: When Lieutenant JG Tarsii Asmara first came to my ship, I was impressed by not only his writing style, but his dedication to detail and creativity. Anyone who has simmed with him knows, that he does not just write to put words in an email or to just "keep his numbers up", he takes each and every post and puts something unique in to it. That is especially note when it comes to his department of Science. Tarsii has taken species that our ship has encountered, found the minor details provided, and spins an amazing description of what they look like and how they could exist. The simmer puts his real science background in to what he sims and creates meaningful and valid ideas true to the very idea of Star Trek! For your dedication to the science department and for your striving to sim your position with realism, I am honored to present you with the Cochrane Award. Congratulations!

The Pilot's Sextant

The Pilot's Sextant
An award named after an old Earth navigational tool, the Pilot's Sextant is given to those Helm officers who have proven themselves to be the best of the best. From finding a safe route home to flying an emergency atmospheric landing, pilots who have earned the right to this award know the importance of staying focused, and puts their ability to make spectacular maneuvers at the service of their ship and its mission.

Rendal Rennyn, USS Atlantis - presented by Raj Blueheart

Lt. Rendal Rennyn has been an asset to the group ever since he joined, bringing up not only his own character development but also staff task. It didn't take long for him to find ways to explore the duty he's performing as HCO of the Atlantis. There we've seen him in many aspects, from just driving the ship to running a runabout, as well as performing his task even when under the weather. More than that, he has shown us skills and made us "see" what the ship was doing with his descriptions of his work as Helm officer. He even pointed out things that we usually take for granted, such as how comfortable and dynamic the chair of the Helm officer on an Intrepid can be! He shows great knowledge and has provided fun and intense moments for us to enjoy while maintaining the dynamics of a starship. His description of navigation through uncharted regions of space is breathtaking, while maintaining a certain degree of technical validity and coherence. It is the perfect combination of logical technological explanation and elegant prose, and for this he deserves the Pilot's Sextant. Congratulations, Lt Rendal Rennyn!

The Order of the Valiant Heart

The Order of the Valiant Heart
This award is given to those ship's Counselor who have shown great skill in protecting the mental health of their crewmates, clearly demonstrating superior ability to care, assist, and comfort those in need. They have gone above and beyond the call of duty in assisting their crewmates with their problems, and in preventing future problems from occurring.

Raissa Moonsong, USS Garuda - presented by Cassandra Egan Manno

The counselor's role is often one of the most difficult to write, but Raissa and her writer Mandy jumped right in and showed off that she was not only a competent therapist but an excellent officer, too. During her first mission aboard, Raissa was often forced into awkward situations where no opening for a traditional counselor developed, but she ran with it: Mandy simmed Raissa's usage of her Academy skills as she filled in at communications, operations, science, and others, always portraying just the right level of uncertainty while still showing that, yes, she knew what she was doing. However, this award recognizes Raissa's abilities as a counselor as I've never encountered a character who's so gung-ho about seeking out and aggressively treating (in a good way!) her patients and crewmates. Her reaction are always level-headed, professional, humble, and helpful. She absolutely deserves this year's Order of the Valiant Heart!

The Semper Fidelis Award

The Semper Fidelis Award
For those StarFleet Marines who have shown great skill in protecting their crew, accomplishing their mission, avoiding tragic loss of life in the line of duty, and upholding the values of the UFoP in times of crisis.

Tyr Waltas, Duronis II Embassy - presented by Toni Turner

Colonel Waltas is the chief of Marines on Duronis II Embassy and has led the marine corp with discipline and honor. His long history of command has made him an approachable leader to the marines while maintaining discipline and order in the corps. He's a Starfleet marine who is always ready to protect his crew, and the Embassy with his experience, skill, and leadership, and seeing that every mission and crisis is finished. He also brings in a humanness to his sims, and carries it off with great with sensitivity.

The Black Cross

The Black Cross Award
This award is given to a member of the Intelligence community that strives to accomplish the goals of Starfleet Intelligence, while simultaneously upholding the ideals and structure of Starfleet command. This person has the cunning to gather intelligence by means of deceptive dialogue or espionage, as opposed to force drawn confessions. While matters of intelligence are often game changers, this person strives to attain those goals within the boundaries of their Commanding Officer, and the regulations of Starfleet. This is the first presentation of this award.

Quinn Reynolds, USS Garuda - presented by Cassandra Egan Manno

Though she's held a few posts during her career, Quinn Reynolds can count her tenure as an intelligence officer as one of the longest in the group's history: She first took it on as a lieutenant, and she now serves as the Garuda's director of intelligence at the rank of captain. Her abilities are second to none; her writer, Emma, built on Quinn's natural gifts in engineering to have her approach her intelligence work from a thoroughly rounded, mechanical background. Further, she has established an intelligence officer with a heart -- a young, adopted son -- and relationships with old friends, including officers she trained as cadets, like Alleran Tan, and who knew her first as a CO, like my own Aron Kells. Quinn Reynolds is everything that a captain could ask for in an intelligence officer, so I am delighted to recognize her strong experience and nuanced writing with the Black Cross.

The Lwaxana Troi Medallion

The Lwaxana Troi Medallion
This award is given to a member who takes a unique role outside of the normal StarFleet positions and creates a colorful and engaging character.

Della Vetri, Duronis II Embassy - presented by Toni Turner

If ever a character was made for a role, it was Della Vetri in the role of Ambassador. Della is the perfect blend of humor, sternness, and emotions mixed with common sense and a calm demeanor. Many times I've just been blown away by her insightful way of getting to the crux of the matter at hand, getting to a fair resolution, and all the while Alex (her writer) stays true to her Trill heritage with characterization and personality.

The Strange Medallion

The Strange Medallion
Named after Commander Sally Strange, widely known as one of the most creative and dedicated First Officers in the fleet's early years, this award is given to those who perform above the call of duty in the position of First Officer.

Akeelah D'Sena, USS Apollo-A - presented by Andrus Jaxx

Many people around the fleet are familiar with the name Jalana Laxyn. As facilitator of the Image Team she can be found diligently working on graphics and coordinating team efforts. She is a wonderful training officer that has guided many cadets through the academy. As if that was not enough, she has really done an excellent job as First Officer of the Apollo with her new character Akeelah D'Sena. As XO, she has stepped up to every challenge presented, even running things during a leave of absence of the commanding officer. She has been, and continues to be, a stellar friend, colleague, and First Officer to many of us!

Special Awards

Next, we continue with awards which recognize members of the fleet for particularly important contributions or roles which affect the fleet's OOC areas. Here, too, the nominations are reviewed by a panel of five staff members, two commanders and three members ranked captain or above.

The Rising Star Award

The Rising Star Award
For members who show great promise in many facets of their participation in the group, and to whom we look to as a future leader.

Nugra, USS Victory - presented by Toni Turner and Cassandra Egan Manno

from Turner: Jonathan has done more than his share of OOC work for the group in the short time he has been a member of the staff. His latest project, the year-long plot arc, that is replacing the Summer Blockbusters, required a lot of time and thought. I knew when he became my First Officer that he had something special on his side - a drive to be the best he can be when working for the group. Now as a Captain, he is trailblazing his way to bigger and better things. I can't think of anyone more deserving this year of the award.
from Egan Manno: I have been extremely impressed with the good work Jonathan's done since he returned to the group. But first, a little background: When I first joined the group, back in 2005, Jonathan's Nugra was about to become the Victory's first officer. I was a little ridiculous back then, and one of my first sims as an ensign was my character's (humorous!) fear that Nugra was going to eat her. Fast forward to Jonathan's return, and we had an excellent joint post in which that character, now a PNPC Federation Ambassador, interacted with Nugra and underscored the development of both. Jonathan has been a decisive force since his return, but especially since he was made a CO; his activity is clear not just on his ship but on the Captains Council and any and every group he's a part of. As Fleet Captain Turner notes, he's a large part of the reason that we'll begin the fleetwide plot arc in 2015, as his enthusiasm for the project has seen it through to what I'm certain will be its strong success. He is a bright and shining star in our community, and we're lucky to have him. Congratulations, Jonathan!

The Kalendra Award

The Kalendra Award
Awarded to a simmer who has performed (on more than one occasion) devious, unexpected plot twists. The simmer must have shown an ability to surprise their colleagues with clever plot twists that were relevant and plausible, given a particular plot.

Alora DeVeau, USS Garuda - presented by Cassandra Egan Manno

Always a twist, but always a *logical* twist -- that's Alora DeVeau's philosophy. Her writer, Amanda, excels at propelling every situation just a little further while always respecting the contributions of her fellow writers and building upon what they've already done. She also makes sure that her twists, devious as they may be, allow room for others to write and engage with the twists, and that makes her a captain's dream! During a recent mission, for example, she was part of an away team that was trying to negotiate a minefield. Her twist upped the ante: What if the mines were part of a larger mechanism that could trigger disturbances like earthquakes and others large-scale geological events? The stakes were suddenly much larger, and it gave *everyone* -- whether they're part of the away team or not, something to do -- and that's what she excels at! Congratulations, Amanda, and I know everyone on the Garuda looks forward to more of what you have to dish out!

The Data Artistic Award

The Data Artistic Award
Rewarded to any officer in the fleet who has made a consistent effort to enter each of the bi-monthly writing challenges. Most notably, the officer must have continued participation even if their submissions were not picked as the winner, thus sticking with the challenge and always giving other something exciting to read.

Irina Pavlova, Duronis II Embassy - presented by Cassandra Egan Manno, Writing Challenge Facilitator, and Toni Turner, Embassy CO and Writing Challenge Judge

from Egan Manno: It's not easy to consistently enter the Writing Challenge without some recognition, and while some writers have won awards many times over, others have not. Some gifted writers continue to improve with every entry, and such is the case with the writer behind Irina Pavlova. He entered each and every of the 2014 Writing Challenges, and though he achieved recognition once -- runner-up in the Challenge from July & August -- I made sure to honestly note that it was evident that he continued to improve and showed that his understanding of his characters and how he wrote them continued to improve. He's just the sort of writer the Data Artistic Award is meant to recognize!
from Turner: I'd just like to say that Andrew (Irina Pavlova) has been a cheerleader for the Writing Challenge all year long. This message to the Embassy's OOC group is typical of Andrew's response to any reminder and entry he makes for the Challenge: This topic is so cool, especially with my character’s backstory that I had to enter twice. Come on guys, get those entries in.

The Boothby Award

The Boothby Award
For trainers who go above and beyond their Academy Training Requirements. These trainers display an outstanding example of dedication to bringing new cadets to our community.

Samal Frazier, Duronis II Embassy - presented by Toni Turner, Embassy CO and Senior Deputy Commandant of the Academy

Captain Frazier has been steadfast in his work as a Trainer, and now as a Deputy Commandant in the Academy. He has work diligently to learn what must be done to insure that every cadet get the proper training needed to refine his craft and become a productive member of our fleet. His addition to the Commandant team, along with Ben Livingston, has been a godsend because of their reliability.

The Xalor Clan Xifilis Award

The Xalor Clan Xifilis Award
Given to any simmer who overcomes any sort of disadvantage while simming. This award was originally called the "Rachel Garett Pendant," but was renamed for the 2000 ceremony to to honor a respected simmer in UFOP: StarBase 118 who passed away in that year. This is the only Special Award that is given more than once per ceremony.

Talia Kaji, USS Victory - presented by Nugra

The Xalor Clan Xifilis is an award that recognizes that there are simmers who have to push through a disability or disadvantage to participate in our community. The simmer for Lieutenant Kaji became pregnant with her second child and continually pushed to sim while feeling sick. She even remained aboard ship and continued to participate and provide exceptional storytelling after the child was born. She even chose to remain full time instead of going part time or LOA just because she loved to write and to play. Talia did not want to leave. Her dedication through disadvantage of two children and the emotional stress of post-pregnancy is why she has earned this award. Congratulations, Lieutenant. It is well earned and I am honored to present it!

Kendall Washburn, USS Columbia - presented by Ben Livingston

Kendall Washburn is valued member of the Columbia family, and although he has had periods of greater and lesser activity, the fact that he remains with us is a testament to his commitment to our group. Despite the injuries, surgeries, medical treatments, and medicine that Washburn's writer has undergone, he has always followed the plot and always sought not only to participate but to improve his writing and contributions. He always brings his best, always welcomes new crew, and always communicates OOC with us. He does this despite the stresses and discomforts of real life, and that makes him an inspiration to the rest of us. Kendall Washburn has certainly earned the Xalor Clan Xifilis Award.

Staff Awards

Staff Awards are reserved solely for officers who are Commander in rank, or above. As the people in our group who carry the burden of leadership and investment in our future success, it's important that we take a few moments to recognize the dedication and work they put in throughout the year. Without a staff as dedicated as the one we have, we simply wouldn't be able to sustain our community nature and many of the activities we enjoy.

Staff Member of the Year Award

Awards Staff StaffMemberOfTheYearMedal 2011.jpg
For staff members who have contributed tirelessly to the organization through any number of OOC channels, while maintaining excellence in simming on their vessel.

Capt. Cassandra Egan Manno, USS Garuda - presented by RAdml. Andrux Jaxx

2014 was a huge year for Captain C. Egan Manno. The USS Garuda is one of the most active ships in the fleet and Captain Egan Manno can be found sitting comfortably in the center chair. But the work of the good captain does not stop at maintaining a well oiled machine. Many of our members have gotten used to seeing her (female character, male writer) as the facilitator of the Writing Challenge. If your stories have not found a way into the competition, that's okay. There are many other places to interact with her.
This year she was a staff member of many hats. Starting off the year, the writer behind the character was elected as the Captains Council Magistrate. After serving in the role for most of the year, Captain Egan Manno was appointed Captain at Large of the Executive Council. On top of these duties, Captain Egan Manno stepped into the role of Cadet Steward. From there she has followed up with many of our new officers.
As you can see, there is hardly an area of the fleet that Captain Cassandra Egan Manno has not leaped into. Her dedication serves as inspiration to all of us and we cannot thank Captain C. Egan Manno for all of her hard work during the year. She is an amazing leader, captain, and friend to this community.

The James T. Kirk Cross

Awards Staff KirkCrossMedal 2011.jpg
Given to new Commanding Officers who show outstanding potential in the field of commanding.

Capt. Nugra, USS Victory - presented by FltCapt. Toni Turner

Nugra has show more than outstanding potential as a commanding officer this year. Since taking command of the Victory, he has trail-blazed across the galaxy with a drive for excellence for his ship, his crew, and our community as a whole. In addition, to that he has found time to take on the year-long plot arc, suggested new ribbons and awards to honor great simming, and created a monthly calendar so that everyone can see at a glance the group's upcoming schedule of events. Congratulations, Captain! Your time and leadership is so appreciated.

The Shuvalis Diamond of Recognition

Awards Staff ShuvalisMedal 2011.jpg
For long-term achievement in leading the Training or Publicity Teams as a way of advancing peaceful relations with "newly discovered life forms.

FltCapt. Toni Turner, Duronis II Embassy - presented by RAdml. Andrux Jaxx

This award recognizes long-term achievement in leading the Training or Publicity Team. There are few people who can embody the award more than Fleet Captain Toni Turner. Toni has been one of the longest running trainers in the academy. When I joined the fleet, back in 2007, she was a Deputy Commandant with the academy, and Cadet Steward. She was even the commanding officer of my training class!
Over the years, I have worked with Toni on the Training Team and even the Publicity Team. There is nothing that she has not volunteered to do, or assist with. In her time with the academy, she has completed over 160 classes as a Training Officer, and countless more as a deputy commandant. She has helped guide and influence many members of our fleet. It gives me great pleasure to present her with this award for her long-time achievement in recruiting, training, and developing new officers.

The Sarek Star

Awards Staff SarekStarMedal 2011.jpg
Given to a command officer who shows great diplomatic ability in working with members and staff.

FltCapt. Idril Mar - presented by FltAdml. Tristan Wolf

Mar’s longevity with the group should be some indication of the fact that she gets along with just about everybody. She often comes at problems with a measured, thoughtful approach, and works hard to maintain her impartiality.
As the fleet’s JAG officer, she has been diligent in treating members working through the discipline process with care, and has helped to ensure that they get a fair appeal when they request it. Despite what can sometimes be a very heated and emotional process for both sides, Mar stays professional throughout, which is helpful to all involved.
Both as a member of the Executive Council, and in her other roles among the fleet, her diplomatic approach has certainly earned her this award. Many thanks to you, Idril Mar, for your contribution to the community!

The Picard Award

Awards Staff PicardMedal 2011.png
The highest honor given to those officers of Admiral rank. Recipients of the Picard Award must show an unfailing devotion to the club, as well as work continually on ways to better the atmosphere of simming in our community.

RAdml. Andrus Jaxx, USS Apollo-A - presented by FltAdml. Tristan Wolf

For the past few years, Andrus has been a driving force in our community. Not only did he manage the successful transition into our most grueling Team Leader position with the Academy Training Team, but he’s been an active and long-time member of the Executive Council, and a mentor to other captains. He is fair, amiable, and a hard worker.
As a commanding officer, he stuck through a difficult year, despite having to take a short leave due to personal reasons, but doing it in a way that left as little disruption to his crew, and the community, as possible. But his long record of managing a successful ship is clear is clear, and we thank him for his service to our fleet through thick-and-thin.
I’m looking forward to many more years of simming and service with Andrus, and I want to congratulate him on this high honor. He’s a testament to what can be accomplished with a love of the game, and I hope that this award proves how much we appreciate his work.

Member Service Awards

The list below only contains members who have newly hit the threshold for the award. For example, a member who's been here for four years, and received the 3-year award last year, won't be listed below. You can see all previous winners of Length of Service awards here.

New this year is the 1-year award. Any member who has previously received the three, five, or 10-year award can now also add the 1-year to their rack.

1-Year Members

  • Brell, unknown graduation date.
  • Sabina Tiam, graduated from training on 09/30/2006, but took more than one year of LOA time.
  • Alana Larson, graduated from training on 05/06/2011, but took more than one year of LOA time.
  • Tyler Kelly, graduated from training on 11/21/2011, but took more than one year of LOA time.
  • Alex Blair, graduated from training on 06/04/2012.
  • Akeelah D'Sena, graduated from training on 06/11/2012.
  • James, graduated from training on 06/18/2012.
  • Ben Livingston, graduated from training on 06/24/2012.
  • Vitor Silveira, graduated from training on 07/02/2012.
  • Irina Pavlova, graduated from training on 08/04/2012.
  • Brayden Jorey, graduated from training on 12/15/2012.
  • Shelther Faranster, graduated from training on 01/15/2013.
  • Mei'konda, graduated from training on 02/01/2013.
  • Chythar Skyfire, graduated from training on 02/17/2013.
  • Alexander Williams, graduated from training on 06/23/2013.
  • Evan Delano, graduated from training on 07/01/2013.
  • Alora DeVeau, graduated from training on 08/01/2013.
  • T'Mar, graduated from training on 08/21/2012.
  • Talia Kaji, graduated from training on 08/18/2013.
  • Sal Taybrim, graduated from training on 10/06/2013.
  • Rocko Stevens, graduated from training on 12/03/2013.
  • Udas, graduated from training on 12/22/2013.

3-Year Members

  • Jen Malcolm, unknown graduation date.
  • James Kolk, graduated from training on 2/9/2007, but took more than one year of LOA time.
  • Tristam Core, graduated from training on 3/1/2011
  • Eerie, graduated from training on 3/26/2011.
  • Renos, graduated from training on 4/24/2011.
  • Siris, graduated from training on 6/28/2011.
  • Alexander Richards, graduated from training on 7/4/2011.
  • Brek, graduated from training on 7/6/2011.

5-Year Members

  • Ceilidh Riverview, unknown graduation date.
  • Kaitlyn Falcon, graduated from training on 3/1/2002, but took more than one year of LOA time.
  • Nugra, graduated from training on 8/4/2003, but took more than one year of LOA time.
  • Raj Blueheart, graduated from training on 1/31/2009.

10-Year Members

  • Tracey Townson, graduated from training on 08/19/2000, but took more than one year of LOA time.
  • Luna Walker, graduated from training on 10/3/2004.
  • T'Lea, graduated from training on 11/22/2004.

Top Sims Contest 2014 Winner

Sims are nominated by all members of the group, and then reviewed by a panel of judges from each ship. Members then vote for the very best sims. This year, 28 members, or about 30% of the fleet, voted in the final round.

Legacies” by Fleet Captain Kali Nicholotti, now simming as Lieutenant Commander Cayden Adyr, USS Apollo-A - presented by Captain Cassandra Egan Manno

This is, maybe most impressively, Marissa's second receipt of this award. She also won in 2012, for a sim in which she also wrote as Kali Nicholotti, albeit in very different circumstances.
I read each of this year's finalists once, but this sim was the only one that demanded that I return to it another time. At first, I assumed that this was only its shock value -- "Whoa. Did she just -- die?" -- but refusing to consider "Legacies" beyond that singular event robs it of a lot of its power. In fact, I'd argue that this isn't even a story about death; rather, it's a story about the sort of life that's specific to what happens just before death. That's a difficult thing to do well, because the death itself can be such an overshadow that everything else loses its potency. Not so in "Legacies." This sim knows what it's doing, and though it's punctuated with death, it glories in everything before.
I'd also like to note the loveliness of seeing Kali in her fighter. Though she was, during this sim, a fleet captain, those final moments of life called back to the character moments long past, both to her beginning in the fleet (as a marine officer on the USS Resolution) and her background as an enlisted marine and fighter pilot, as covered in several other sims and Writing Challenge entries. This felt like an ending that was not only fitting but utterly magnificent, and I am pleased and honored to note it as this year's Top Sim.

Special Thanks

  • Cassandra Egan Manno: What can I say? Cassandra went above and beyond all requirements to help put together this awards ceremony, not only managing the entire process of curating the award nominations, but also facilitating the awards committee, which reviews and selects the Special and Duty Post awards. And where most others stopped, Cassandra took on the compiling of all the award presentations and even wrote the wonderful introduction. I could not have done it without Cassandra. Truly an amazing effort. --Wolf
  • Renos: Also assisted in the compiling of the awards and was incredibly helpful in working on the Member Length of Service awards, which are always a “bear” to put together, requiring research in multiple sources. The help is very much appreciated.
  • Nugra: Assisted in the compiling of the awards. Many thanks to him for the help!