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Commander's award highlights Keesler's Katrina comeback

Governor Barbour chats with General and Laura Capasso following the general’s recognition as one of 15 outstanding community leaders by The Sun Herald and the Journal of South Mississippi Business.  (U.S. Air Force Photo by Tech. Sgt. Chuck Marsh)

Governor Barbour chats with General and Laura Capasso following the general’s recognition as one of 15 outstanding community leaders by The Sun Herald and the Journal of South Mississippi Business. (U.S. Air Force Photo by Tech. Sgt. Chuck Marsh)

KEESLER AIR FORCE BASE, Miss. -- Brig. Gen. Paul Capasso, 81st Training Wing commander, and 14 other community leaders were inducted into South Mississippi's Outstanding Community Leaders Class of 2006. 

Gov. Haley Barbour was the guest speaker and presented awards at Friday's event, sponsored by The Sun Herald and the Journal of South Mississippi Business. 

"On this coast and throughout these counties, the leadership has stepped up to the challenges," said Governor Barbour. "Nobody works harder than the leader."
Sun Herald publisher Ricky Mathews echoed the importance of leadership to the crowd of nearly 550 who attended the awards breakfast at the Imperial Palace conference room. 

"The No. 1 reason we succeeded in the wake of Hurricane Katrina is leadership," he said. 

General Capasso was honored by the nomination and credited his award to the perseverance of the men and women of Keesler. 

"This award is a direct reflection of the great work Team Keesler continues to do in our surrounding communities, Keesler and our Air Force," General Capasso said. "I couldn't be more proud of the outstanding accomplishments our people have performed on a daily basis despite the personal sacrifices Hurricane Katrina imposed upon them. This award is a testament to their courage and selfless contributions."