Air Guard dedicates Shepperd Hall at Andrews

JOINT BASE ANDREWS, Md., – The Air National Guard unveiled the newest addition to its readiness center during a ribbon-cutting and dedication ceremony here today.

The new addition is named “Shepperd Hall” in honor of retired Air Force Maj. Gen. Donald W. Sheppard, a former director of the Air National Guard.

“I accept this building for what it stands for, not me, not the name, but you, and all of you that made this possible,” said Shepperd. “I am not wealthy, but because of what I’ve done, I am around the richest people on the planet.”

The $52 million project, which broke ground in late 2007, includes administrative offices and a fitness center for 1,200 military members and civilians.

The Air Guard’s main directorate offices were separated between Jefferson Plaza 1 in Crystal City, Va., and the Air National Guard Readiness Center at Andrews for many years. The expansion project puts an end to that.

The location here on Joint Base Andrews also provides enhanced force protection measures for the entire staff, which is required by the 2005 Base Realignment and Closure law.

“This building was built because terrorists attacked our nation on Sept. 11, 2001 … this building was built, because we couldn’t provide a secure work environment for those men and women of the National Guard downtown in Crystal City,” said Air Force Gen. Craig R. McKinley, the chief of the National Guard Bureau.

“But, this building is symbolic in that we will go forward, we have a future … the National Guard will continue to serve this nation in both its federal mission and its state mission,” he said.

Maurey Williams, the resident engineer on the Shepperd Hall project, said this building is state-of-the-art and achieved “Silver” certification from the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design.

“It includes raised floor with vents to allow better air flow, fiber optic cable directly to workers desks for faster internet service, logarithmically timed shades that will reduce glare and the green house effect,” he said.

The building also has a “green” roof, which will absorb rainwater and provide insulation.

Gov. Martin O’Malley of Maryland also issued a proclamation declaring Sept. 16, 2010 as “Air National Guard Readiness Center Day.”

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