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Awards and accreditations

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U.S. Navy Captain Edward F. Ney Memorial Award

The Captain Edward F. Ney Memorial Award is the highest honor given to U.S. Navy food service operations to recognize food service excellence. The galleys honored must achieve a five-star rating from the Navy evaluation team during an annual evaluation. Most galleys score a three-star accreditation, but five-star recipients can be nominated for the Ney Award.  The award is designed to improve food services by encouraging competition among food service operations. It was named for the Navy captain who served as the head of the Subsistence Division of the Bureau of Supplies and Accounts from 1940 to 1945. GCE has received a five-star annual accreditation at Naval Air Station Pensacola (Pensacola, FL) every year since 2001 and received the Ney Award in 2010. In 2023, Naval Station Newport Rhode Island received its twelfth five-star accreditation.

U.S. Army Philip A. Connelly Award

This annual, competitive event is a partnership between the U.S. Army and the National Restaurant Association, and recognizes excellence in food service throughout the Army.

  • The Courage Inn Dining Facility at Joint Base Lewis-McChord Army Base Fort Lewis, Tacoma, Washington, was recognized in 2014 and 2015.
  • The 16th Combat Aviation Brigade (CAB) Raptor’s Nest Dining Facility, at Joint Base Lewis-McChord Army Base Fort Lewis, Tacoma, Washington, was recognized in 2018.
  • Eglin Air Force Base 7th Special Forces was recognized in 2019.

U.S. Air Force Hennessy Award

The John L. Hennessy Award is the highest honor an Air Force dining facility can attain. It was named for the late John L. Hennessy, a hotel and restaurant executive who led an advisory group responsible for improving military food service. The Hennessy Award promotes food service excellence by encouraging competition among providers. GCE achieved this award several times at two of our military contract installations.

  • Eglin Air Force Base, Fort Walton Beach, Florida: 2003, 2006, 2009 and 2012
  • Duke Field, U.S. Air Force Reserve, Crestview, Florida: 2000, 2001, 2003, 2006, 2008, 2011 and 2012

U.S. Coast Guard Forrest O. Rednour Memorial Award

The Forrest O. Rednour Memorial Award for Excellence in Food Service is presented annually to recognize U.S. Coast Guard dining facilities that exemplify the best in food service professionalism. Although the award program has been in existence since 1995, in 2008 it was renamed to honor the World War II era Ships Cook Second Class who heroically helped rescue survivors of a torpedoed transport vessel only to later lose his life in the line of duty. GCE achieved this recognition at U.S. Coast Guard, Air Station Clearwater, FL, the Large Ashore category, for four years (2001, 2002, 2004, 2007), and we were the runner up in 2003 and 2008.

Best in Pacific Air Forces (PACAF) Award

The GCE team at Two Seasons Dining Facility at the Eielson Air Force Base in Eielson, Alaska, received the title – Best Dining Facility in PACAF 2017. The GCE team exhibited excellence in management effectiveness, force readiness support, food quality, employee and customer relations, resource conservation and training, and safety awareness.

Gold Plate Award

The major U.S. Air Force commands award the Gold Plate Award to the best food service operation within their authority. The Air Force Material Command has awarded this honor to the Eglin Air Force Base food services operations for the following years: 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2008, 2009 2010, 2011 and 2012.

GCE has been awarded the highest level of accreditation by CARF International for community employment services.

Global Connections to Employment (GCE) is an Accredited Business through the Better Business Bureau of Northwest Florida, where our organization is headquartered.

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Our parent company, LifeView Group, receives funding from the State of Florida, the Department of Children and Families, the Agency for Health Care Administration (AHCA), the Florida Department of Education/Division of Vocational Services and the federal government.

LifeView Group is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. Minorities, females, protected veterans and individuals with disabilities are encouraged to apply. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, national origin, disability or protected veteran status.

Recent awards

Hayli Gourley team member of the year gray shirt

GCE 2023 Team Member of the Year

Hayli Gourley is the GCE 2023 Team Member of the Year. She was born with a learning disability and worked hard to earn her high school diploma. Her first job was at a hotel, but she longed for teamwork. Today, Hayli is on the food services team at Global Connections to Employment (GCE) in Tacoma, […]

2023 Pinnacle Award honoree Lori Kain

Pinnacle Award honoree

Pensacola, Fla. (January 2, 2024) – Lori Kain, director of government and community relations for Global Connections to Employment, is a Pinnacle Award honoree. Each year, 850 Magazine honors leading women in business who hold themselves to high standards and contribute to the betterment of their communities. Lori is a tireless advocate for persons with […]

headshot Betty Geren

GCE achieves five-star accreditation

Pensacola, Fla. (Dec. 15, 2023) – GCE achieves five-star accreditation for excellence in food services. The Global Connections to Employment team at Naval Air Station Pensacola is based near the home office. GCE serves as one of the country’s largest private employers of persons with disabilities. “Most galleys score a three-star accreditation, but GCE achieves […]