Spangdahlem Air Base in Germany has earned the 2011 Commander in Chief’s Installation Excellence Award, making it the top base in the U.S. Air Force and the recipient of a $1 million prize for quality-of-life projects.

The base, home to the 52nd Fighter Wing, nudged out Travis Air Force Base, Calif., for the award, according to the service.

The annual award —announced Tuesday by Secretary of the Air Force Michael B. Donley and Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Norton A. Schwartz — recognizes the base that best uses its resources to support Defense Department missions.

“I am proud to be a part of this installation and I know this award is truly deserved,” Col. Christopher Weggeman, the base commander, said in a news release.

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