Thomasville, GA -- March 19, 2012 --
Congressman Sanford Bishop introduced the man of the hour, General Lloyd Austin, at the annual citizen awards ceremony.
This event was hosted by the Thomasville - Thomas County chamber of Commerce.
General Austin is a recipient of the Pinnacle award. The award is the chamber's highest honor, and is not given out every year.
"It's especially gratifying today being a recipient of the Pinnacle Award, clearly an unexpected occurrence but certainly very grateful. It's good to be here," said the 4-star general.
General Austin cherishes any occasion that takes him back home.
His career began when he left Thomasville for West Point 41 years ago. He was at the forefront of Operation Iraqi Freedom, then became the last commanding general of United States Forces in Iraq before our nation's exit last year.
"After 10 years, almost 10 years of conflict there, it was really, really a meaningful experience, and very well done on the part of our young men and women," said General Austin, speaking fondly about our service men and women.
This past December, General Austin was appointed to Vice Chief of Staff for the U.S. Army. His goal now for the armed forces: to heal and maintain.
"We have removed most of our people and equipment and our people out of Iraq, the goal now is to reset that equipment and reorient those people so that we remain a trained and ready force capable of answering our nation's call at a moment's notice."