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Vandenberg reservist places in America Way Road Warrior Contest

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. -- Vandenberg reservist, Maj. Rich Stedronsky, of the 30th Weather Squadron, competed against people from around the country and has earned the third place title in the 2010 American Airline's America Way Road Warrior Contest.

The American Way Road Warrior Contest is an annual American Airlines contest that measures contestant's creative biographies along with their answers to a few questions. They choose only the most charismatic and diverse candidates as finalists. This year's essay asked participants to write an essay about their journey to the top of the mountain (business or personal life), said Major Stedronsky .

Another task was to indentify 10 international cities by only viewing there skyline.

Major Rich Stedronsky travels extensively because of his position as a meteorologist and sales director at IPS MeteoStar Inc., a software company in Denver, Colo.

"Since our company works in the global meteorology market, I tend to travel all over the world meeting new, prospective customers as well as touching base with existing customers to ensure they are happy," Major Stedronsky said.

During his time in the Air Force, Major Stedronsky has been an assistant flight commander in Guam, flight commander in Diego Garcia, an instructor and commander at the Joint Weather Schoolhouse at Keesler AFB, Miss., and he currently serves in the Air Force Reserves as the launch weather commander at Vandenberg's 30th WS.

When asked how he believed his time in the Air Force aided him in placing in the contest, Major Stedronsky attributed his success to his writing skills.

"During my time, both on active duty and in the Reserves, writing was vitally important," Major Stedronsky said. "OPRs, EPRs, awards, decorations, papers for different training courses, email correspondence with higher ranking officers, and etc. All of these opportunities to communicate via the written word had a large, positive impact on my writing skills and a direct influence on why the essay I wrote helped me win."

The Major, whose father was an employee of American Airlines for more than 40 years, has been entering the contest annually since 2006.

"American Way called me back in fall of 2010 to notify me that I was one of the five finalists," Major Stedronsky said. "I really couldn't believe it. I was thrilled, regardless of what place I ended up with."

Major Stedronsky explained that even with trips taking him as far as Israel and Turkey, he was able to handle his busy traveling schedule.

"The company does a lot of work with the Department of Defense, so they are very understanding on my desire to continue to serve my country and my needs to fit in Reserve tours," Major Stedronsky said.

To read more about Major Stedronsky and his prize winning adventures visit: