Dobyns-Bennett Air Force JROTC Earns 11th Consecutive AF JROTC Distinguished Unit Award

Published on May 3, 2018 at 12:39 p.m.

KINGSPORT, Tenn. – The Dobyns-Bennett High School Air Force Junior ROTC has earned the Air Force JROTC Distinguished Unit Award (DUA) for the 2017-2018 school year, the eleventh consecutive year to receive such honor. Of those eleven DUA’s, three previous awards were designated "with Merit" as the result of their Headquarters Air Force JROTC on-site program evaluation. The DUA is the highest level unit award for the AF JROTC awarded by Air Force Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps HeadquartersMaxwell Air Force Base, AL.

This award places Dobyns-Bennett in the top 25 percent of the 900 AF JROTC units in world.

“These awards recognize the personal growth and accomplishments of the cadets, the contributions of the instructors as mentors of the cadets, and the support of the school and community,” wrote Colonel Paul Lips, AF JROTC Director in his congratulatory letter to Colonel Eric Vogt, US Air Force (Retired) and Chief Master Sergeant Melanie Blankenship, US Air Force (retired)D-B's Aerospace Science Instructors

All first and second semester D-B Cadets will receive the DUA Ribbon for their uniforms, the guidon (or unit flag) will have another streamer added to their honors and Dobyns-Bennett will retains its designation as an Honor Military School for the 2018 – 2019 School Year. 

"Our staff and student leadership have worked to provide a program of excellence with very high expectations and strong character development,” said Dobyns-Bennett Principal Dr. Chris Hampton. “Earning the unit of distinction status for every year of our existence is quite significant to our program and AF JROTC community.  This program provides outstanding leadership and academic opportunities that will serve students well in their future endeavors."

For the current school year, D-B Cadets have performed 76 service events totaling over 2,500 hours and supporting the community with color guards, ushers, event assistance and clean up projects.

Since the D-B AF JROTC program was established in 2006, over 550 D-B students have participated in at least one semester. Of the D-B cadets who were active all four years, approximately nine percent joined the officer or enlisted ranks of the Armed Services. Former D-B Cadets are currently on active duty with the US Air Force, ArmyNavy and Marine Corps. There are also JROTC graduates attending the US Air ForceUS Naval and Merchant Marine Academies.

This year’s D-B AF JROTC graduates include several cadets who have formally committed to joining the military: US Army (Riley Craig & Michael Young), US Air Force Academy (Mason McDougal), and University of Tennessee, Knoxville on a 4-year AF ROTC Scholarship (Andre Chikomb).

Kingsport City Schools (KCS) is a public school district located in Kingsport, Tenn., serving students in Sullivan and Hawkins county. The district is comprised of 13 schools, including a Pre-K, eight elementary schools, two middle schools, one high school, a high school program of choice and an alternative learning program; with total enrollment over 7,700 students. The vision of Kingsport City Schools is to be, Student Focused … World Class.

KCS has been named the top school district in Tennessee as winner of the 2014 SCORE Prize District Award by the State Collaborative on Reforming Education (SCORE) and has earned the 2014 Achievement Award in the annual Excellence in Tennessee Recognition Program by the Tennessee Center for Performance Excellence (TNCPE).

For more information on KCS, visit, listen live on WCSK 90.3 FM, The Voice of KCS, read our blog, We Are KCS, download our mobile app for Apple / Android devices or call (423) 378.2100. We’re social too; follow us on Facebook (Kingsport City Schools), Twitter (@KCS_District), LinkedIn (Kingsport City Schools) and check out our YouTube Channel (KPTSchools).