Holloman, Alamogordo lay claim as "Friendliest Place on Earth"

HOLLOMAN AFB, N.M. -- Holloman Air Force Base, along with the city of Alamogordo, formally claimed the title of, "Friendliest Place on Earth," in a ceremony at the Officer's Club here March 20. 

More than a catchphrase, the FPOE is a campaign encompassing improvements to the base infrastructure, Airmen morale and wellness initiatives and opportunities to learn more about and explore the local area. 

"This is not just about a smile, it's about making the place you live and work a better place," said Col. Mark Engeman, 49th Mission Support Group commander. 

The recent renovation of the base Visitor's Center, re-designed base Web site, upcoming customer college and arts and entertainment expos were cited as examples of FPOE in action. 

The colonel also pointed out that it forces everyone on base to re-evaluate their processes and the way they interact with people. 

"Calling ourselves the friendliest place makes us take note of what we do, or do not do," he said. 

Alamogordo Mayor Donald Carroll said the way the military community becomes part of the local community while here and the way in which they are embraced by permanent residents, is what makes us the friendliest place on Earth. 

"The challenge is to go the extra mile and ensure we are one community separated only by six miles of highway," the mayor said. 

Col. David Moore, 49th Fighter Wing vice commander, ended by saying the true measure of success for the program will be determined by how well we treat our Airmen, since they are the ones this campaign is aimed at. 

"Simply putting down the marker is only the beginning, now we need to live up to it," Col. Moore said.