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Master Sergeant Denise Cardona Santos

MSgt Cardona Santos is originally from Aguas Buenas, Puerto Rico. In 2003 she received her Bachelor of Music Degree from the Puerto Rico Conservatory of Music where she was a student of Professor Kathleen Jones. Before joining the Air Force, MSgt Cardona also studied with David Finlayson, Jerome Ashby, Jorge Montilla, Luigi Rossi, James Gillespie, John Scott, and Ricardo Morales.

MSgt Cardona Santos enlisted in the Air Force in 2005. Her first duty station was at Lackland AFB, TX with the Band of the West. During this time she was a featured guest artist at Carnegie Hall with the members of the Puerto Rico Conservatory Concert Band. The year prior to enlisting, Msgt Cardona Santos was the principle clarinetist of this ensemble which won the call for competition tapes.

In 2007, she was stationed overseas at Sembach AFB, Germany. MSgt Cardona Santos has performed in over twenty foreign countries for many U.S. Ambassadors and Foreign Dignitaries. For her service in Germany, MSgt Cardona Santos was awarded the United States Air Force Commendation medal and Airman of the Year Public Affairs level award for her involvement in building strong foreign relations.

In her free time, MSgt Cardona Santos likes to volunteer in the local community by providing meals to the elderly via the San Antonio Meals on Wheels program.

2003: Bachelor's Degree Clarinet Performance, Conservatory of Music PR
2005: Basic Military training, Lackland AFB, TX
2011: Airman Leadership School, Lackland AFB, TX
2016: NCO Academy Non-Residence
2017: Senior Enlisted Joint Professional Military Education Non-Residence

April 2005 - December 2007, Lackland AFB, Texas
December 2007- January 2010, Sembach, Germany
January 2010- Present, Lackland AFB, Texas

Major Awards and Decorations:
National Defense Service Medal
Global War on Terrorism Service Medal
Air Force Commendation Medal
AF Outstanding Unit Award        
AF Organizational Excellence Award       
AF Good Conduct Medal              
Humanitarian Service Medal      
AF Overseas Ribbon Long            
AF Longevity Service      
USAF NCO PME Graduate Ribbon             
AF Training Ribbon         

Other Achievements:
USAFE Band Airman of the quarter 2007
USAFE Band Airman of the year 2008
USAFE Band Airman of the year PA level 2008
USAF Band of the West NCO of the 1st quarter 2015
Colonel Finley R. Hamilton Outstanding Musician Award 2017

Effective Dates of Promotion:
Staff Sergeant - 01 September, 2012
Technical Sergeant – 01 September, 2019