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NSA Souda Bay Navy Exchange Receives the 2021 Bingham Award

30 November 2022

From Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Delaney S. Jensen

The Navy Exchange Souda Bay received the 2021 Bingham Award during a ceremony at the Fitness Center onboard Naval Support Activity Souda Bay, Nov. 30, 2022.
The Bingham Award was established in 1979 to recognize excellence in customer service, operations and management at NEX activities and is the highest award a store can receive. The award is presented to the best NEX in nine sales categories for overall financial results and customer service; NEX Souda Bay received the award in the $4 million to $10 million sales category.

“Jennifer, it’s no accident that you and your team earned this Bingham award,” said retired Rear Adm. Robert J. Bianchi, chief executive officer, Navy Exchange Service Command, while addressing General Manager Jennifer Sullivan, NEX Souda Bay. “Your incredible team worked extremely hard to support your patrons and the Navy and in doing so, reached new heights in providing premier customer service. Bravo Zulu to you for a great job leading the store."

Bianchi thanked the NSA Souda Bay Sailors for their service, noting that without them, the NEX would not exist. He then congratulated the NEX Souda Bay associates, and said, “Team Souda, wonderful, wonderful work. Celebrate this day and know that you earned every bit of it!”

In his remarks, Bianchi noted the extraordinary efforts of NEX Souda Bay team during the COVID-19 pandemic. Upon learning Sailors from the USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN 69) Carrier Strike Group and the USS Iwo Jima (LHD 7) and her Amphibious Readiness Group were unable to leave the NATO Marathi Pier Complex, they constructed a 400-meter temporary building and palletized stock from the store. The NEX team transferred the goods to the NATO Marathi Pier Complex, unloaded the items, and set up an alternate store. Everything from uniform components, hygiene items, food, drinks and even local gifts from the Greek vendors that are currently located at the NEX Souda Bay were included in the sales. If an item was unavailable on-site and Sailor needed it, the NEX Souda Bay staff retrieved that item for the Sailor, ensuring the U.S. Navy was able to stay mission capable and ready.

“What you do matters,” said Capt. Odin J. Klug, commanding officer, NSA Souda Bay. “You make a difference every day. You support our Sailors by making sure they have the necessities – not just the basic items they need but the things that will carry them through the next week, the next month, the next 6 months. And because their basic needs are taken care of, they can focus on their mission – ensuring they are ready to respond when called upon in support of our national security … our collective security.”

Closing the ceremony, Sullivan looked at the NEX team and said, “You never cease to amaze me. I am so proud and honored to work beside you.”
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