Following hundreds of nominations nationwide and a national vote yielding more than 23,000 votes, Megan Harless has been named the 2020-Armed Forces Insurance Red River Army Depot Spouse of the Year and a Top 18 finalist. Harless is currently stationed with her husband, Aaron Harless at Red River Army Depot.
Now in its 13th year honoring the unwavering dedication of our nation’s more than 1.1 million military spouses, Armed Forces Insurance is proud to recognize the sacrifice and reward the change of military spouses from all six branches of the Armed Forces who are inspiring others and having a tangible, measurable effect on their communities.
Like all military spouses, Harless has her own unique story, hers being one of service. Shortly after she married her husband, she commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant into the United States Army and served as a dual military couple alongside her spouse. After her deployment to Iraq, and with two small children at home she made the decision to not stay in after her obligation was over. Stepping out of military ranks and back into the role as a military spouse, Megan continued to serve the military community through a number of organizations to include PWOC (Protestant Women of the Chapel), Spouses Club, and most recently for her advocacy work in PCS (Permanent Change of Station) Reform to improve the moving process and experience that every service member goes through at some point in their career. Her goal is to continue to educate spouses on the regulations and policies while working with US Transportation Command and the moving industry to improve the experience for military families.
“It is an honor to be a military spouse and to continue to serve our military community even after my time of wearing the uniform is over”, said Harless. “Our community goes through some unique situations and to me its important that we show up for each other, support each other, and continue to do what we can to make it better. For me, making it better means improving the PCS process and having our families not so stressed when it comes time to move again.:
Nominations from community members nationwide were accepted November 25, 2019, through January 24, 2020. The program is organized by base-level winners, then top 18 finalists, then branch level winners, and, finally, the overall 2020 Armed Forces Insurance Military Spouse of the Year® (AFI MSOY) who are all selected by popular vote and judging panels. Megan Harless was named as a top 18 finalist is now in consideration of being named the overall winner. After a final vote conducted on March 3-4, the overall winner will be unveiled at an awards dinner on May 7 at The Army Navy Country Club in Arlington, VA, in conjunction with National Military Spouse Appreciation Day, which occurs on May 8.
“Over the ten years Armed Forces Insurance has been involved with the Military Spouse of the Year® awards program, we have seen it grow and amplify the voice of the military spouse on a national stage,” says Lori Simmons, chief marketing officer at Armed Forces Insurance. “These spouses have pioneered initiatives, founded organizations, started businesses, and advocated for issues impacting the quality-of-life for military families in the best ways imaginable. We are thrilled to welcome the 2020 base winners to the AFI MSOY family and work alongside them to make an even bigger impact.”
To learn more about NAME and the other base winners, please visit www.msoy.afi.org.
Armed Forces Insurance Military Spouse of the Year®
The Armed Forces Insurance (AFI) Military Spouse of the Year® Award was founded in 2008 by Chris Hale, CEO of veteran-owned Neptune Holdings, and after nine years as title sponsor, AFI assumed ownership in 2018. The award is presented at a base, branch and overall level each year to military spouses who are making a difference in their communities and providing a collective voice for spouses around the world. Through a national nomination and voting process, these nominees are judged on five core criteria: overall involvement in military community, exhibition of leadership skills, community building capability, communication skills and overall personal story. With more than one million military spouses worldwide, this award program aims to shine a spotlight on the force behind our armed forces. For more information, please visit www.msoy.afi.org.