2017 Department of the Army Best Warrior Competition Media Availability

What:     Media Availability for the 2017 Best Warrior Competition

Where:   Fort A.P. Hill, Va.

When:    Oct. 5, 2017, 1:30 p.m. until 3:30 p.m.

Background: The premier DA-level competition, 22 of the Army’s finest Soldiers, representing 11 commands from across the Army, compete in the 2017 Best Warrior Competition at Fort A.P. Hill, Va., and the Pentagon from Sept. 30 to Oct. 6, 2017.

Sgt. Maj. of the Army Daniel Dailey oversees the 16th annual competition, which names the DA Soldier and Noncommissioned Officer of the Year.

Warriors selected to compete for these prestigious titles – 11 NCOs and 11 Soldiers – have already mastered a series of benchmarks throughout the year to qualify for the Army-wide competition.

During the six-day competition, these elite competitors will test their Army aptitude by conquering urban warfare simulations, board interviews, physical fitness tests, written exams, and Warrior tasks and battle drills relevant to today’s operating environment.

Winners will be announced at the Sergeant Major of the Army’s Awards Luncheon, Oct. 9, during the AUSA Convention. The event will be broadcast through live streaming at http://www.dvidshub.net/. Interviews with the Soldier and NCO of the Year begin immediately after the award ceremony.


Media Coverage:

Additional information on competitors, Army commands and events can be found here: https://www.army.mil/bestwarrior/index.html

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Remembering September 11, 2001

Lt. Col. Andrew Q. Jordan hosted a 9/11 Ceremony this morning at 8:30 AM in the Virginia Congressional Medal of Honor, honor garden on post. Soldiers, garrison staff and tenant organization personnel came together to remember the events of September 11, 2001.  

Check out the photos from the event.


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Secretary of the Army Energy & Water Management Awards Presented to Fort A.P. Hill

PENTAGON – Mr. J. Randall Robinson, acting assistant secretary of the Army for Installations, Energy and Environment, and Ms. Carla Coulson, acting deputy assistant chief of staff for Installation Management, presented thirteen 2017 Secretary of the Army Energy and Water Management Awards to recipients during the Energy Exchange Symposium held in Tampa Florida.

The Awards are presented in categories related to energy efficiency, energy management, and water conservation.

Speaking at the symposium, Robinson said, “From the installation perspective, we know that Installation readiness is critical to warfighter readiness. The Army has 156 Installations and a total of almost a billion square feet in building space.

“Those installations provide direct support to our operational warfighter in both operational requirements and as power projection platforms. The Army’s new doctrine, ‘Multi-Domain Battle’ recognizes the contribution that installations make to the war fight and explicitly includes them in the battle space as part of the “strategic support area.

“Because of this, the Army’s Installation efforts are focused on readiness and mission accomplishment through commodity reduction and energy and water security improvement.”

This year’s award recipients included individuals and organizations who made significant contributions to energy and water efficiency within the U.S. Army and federal government.

Energy Conservation

Fort A.P. Hill
The energy team at Fort A.P. Hill achieved dramatic reductions in energy consumption through numerous energy efficiency projects and an aggressive building management program. The team is Roderick Troy Smith, Sergio Sergi, Terry Banks and Mr. Benjamin McBride. Their projects include the installation of an exterior finish and insulation system on ten transient training barracks; replacement of fuel oil fired hot water boilers and split system air conditioning units in three dining facilities with more efficient and cleaner hybrid systems; and the installation of high-efficient windows in training support buildings. Fort A.P. Hill also reduced consumption through the use of controls software for heating, ventilation, and air condition (HVAC) systems; active implementation and monitoring of heating and cooling set points; and collection and analysis of building meter data to identify and resolve irregularities in electric consumption. Further, Fort A.P. Hill reduced the use of fuel oil for building heat by 93 percent, eliminating the need for environmentally-problematic storage tanks and reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

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Fort A.P. Hill Fire Department hosted Seminar on Fire Leadership.

U.S. Army Garrison Fort A.P. Hill Department of Emergency Services Fire Department sponsored and hosted a two day Fire Leadership Seminar July 8 — 9, 2017.

Retired Battalion Chiefs John Salka and Rick Lasky were the instructors for the seminar; both bringing years of experience to the event.

Salka is a 28 year veteran with the New York Fire Department (FDNY) and was a battalion Chief in the Bronx. He has instructed in numerous capacities at the FDNY Training Academy and is a nationally recognized instructor and lecturer.

Lasky, a 34 year veteran of the fire service, served as chief of the Lewisville, Texas Fire Department for 12 years. He was a contributor in developing the “Saving Our Own” program and served as the co-lead instructor for the H.O.T. Firefighter Survival program at Fire Department Instructor’s Conference (FDIC) for more than 10 years.


More than 40 first responders from more than six states participated including Firefighters from Fort A.P. Hill, Marine Corps Base Quantico, Naval District Washington Indian Head, Fort Lee, Spotsylvania Co. Fire Department, Hanover Co. Fire Department, Caroline Co. Fire Department, and the State of Virginia Office of Fire Programs.

The seminar covered such leadership and discipline topics as peer mentoring, team building, operations and expectations on the fire ground, rapid intervention team skills & tactics as well as firefighter survival.

Assistant Fire Chief, Keith Buchanan, of the Ladysmith Vol. Fire Dept. in Caroline County said, “It’s the best training that I have received in my 32 years in the Fire Service.”

Fort A.P. Hill’s Assistant Fire Chief of Training, Peter M. Orioles, said the training was organized with fire safety and communications in mind, not just for the post fire department but the surrounding local, state and federal departments and agencies as well.

“The fire & emergency services within the DoD, State and local counties all require ongoing leadership & skills training and by learning together, we work together seamlessly in the event of an emergency,” said Orioles. “Our community training initiative network fosters the growing interoperability, so when the need may arise, we can execute our mission for the public.”

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Army Reserve NCO earns top legal award


Fort A.P. Hill, Virginia – Staff Sgt. Sarah Hawley, a paralegal noncommissioned officer with the U.S. Army Reserve Legal Command, is this year’s recipient of the Sergeant Eric L. Coggins Award for Excellence.

It’s the first time that a U.S. Army Reserve paralegal noncommissioned officer won the Army’s top award for excellence in the legal profession.
The award has been presented every year since 1998.

Hawley’s selection was announced April 19. Lt. Gen. Flora D. Darpino, the Judge Advocate General of the U.S. Army, and Command Sgt. Maj. Joseph P. Lister, the JAG Corps Regimental Command Sergeant Major called Hawley to personally congratulate her. When the call came in, Hawley’s heart was pounding, she said.

“It’s one of those moments that you think would never happen to you, but I will certainly remember it forever,” Hawley said. “I was shocked, excited, humbled, honored, speechless.”

She will receive the award May 16 during the Law for Paralegal and Advanced Law for Paralegal Course in Charlottesville, Virginia

“Staff Sgt. Hawley is well respected by her seniors, peers and subordinates,” said Master Sgt. Joanne Sykes, who nominated Hawley for the award. “She possesses unquestionable integrity. Her professional knowledge and technical competence are truly outstanding.”

Established in 1997, the annual award recognizes an enlisted paralegal who best embodies the standards for which Coggins was known. Coggins was a U.S. Army paralegal in Korea, who volunteered for Middle East duty. While still a specialist, Coggins served as the NCO in charge of the Camp Doha Legal Office in Kuwait. Afterward, Coggins died from liver cancer.

“This is an amazing achievement,” said Brig. Gen. Mitchell R. Chitwood, Commander of the U.S. Army Reserve Legal Command. “We are fortunate to have an NCO as talented as Staff Sgt. Hawley on our team.”

A Soldier in the JAG corps for 10 years, Hawley is a paralegal and court reporter. Qualified airborne and air assault, Hawley mobilized for four years including time with the 82nd Airborne Division and at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. She currently serves in the command’s G7 section, where she is the NCOIC of the court reporter program and the airborne and air assault programs. Hawley is also the command’s master fitness trainer. She was an integral part of the command’s recent Best Warrior Competition at Fort A.P. Hill, Virginia and is the lead NCO in the command’s upcoming field training at Fort Dix, New Jersey.

Hawley holds a Master’s Degree in Biotechnology from The John Hopkins University and is now planning on attending medical school soon. Hawley has taken part in several humanitarian efforts including missionary work in Kenya and the Dominican Republic. She also mentors elementary school children in Washington D.C. inner city public schools. Hawley’s inner drive motivates here to go above and beyond in every aspect of her life, she said.

“I’d like to leave the world a better place than it was before I was here,” said Hawley, who’s always had a passion for serving others. “This began when I was growing up participating in mission trips with my church, and (continued) when I joined the military to serve my country.”

Headquartered in Gaithersburg, Maryland, about 25 miles northwest of Washington, D.C., USARLC oversees 1,800 personnel stationed in 104 cities in 43 states in the continental U.S. and two overseas locations. This includes Soldiers serving as judge advocates, warrant officers, paralegal noncommissioned officers, junior enlisted personnel, plus civilian para-professionals.

The Army Reserve provides approximately 87 percent of the Army’s legal units and approximately 40 percent of the Army’s attorneys. The command serves the legal needs of the Army Reserve Soldiers, families, and retirees. It also augments the active Army, backfilling units, working at installation legal offices and supporting forward deployed military missions.

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Deployment for Training: 2/2 conducts training exercises on Fort A.P. Hill

Deployment for Training: 2/2 conducts training exercises

Marines with 2nd Battalion, 2nd Marine Regiment executed training exercises while conducting a Deployment for Training exercise at Fort A.P. Hill, Virginia, April 22, 2017.
The training consisted of quick reaction force drills, casualty evacuation exercises, and room-clearing techniques.

“The exercises we conducted today were QRF and room clearing,” said Cpl. Kevin Wilson, a squad leader with 2nd Platoon, Fox Company. “What QRF means is if any friendly unit is in a tough bond, we’d go out and save them.”

Deployment for Training: 2/2 conducts training exercises

The Marines trained to improve their basic infantry skills for their upcoming deployment.

“I expect my Marines to learn a lot from the QRF drills,” said Wilson. “They need to quickly be able to put their gear on and bring the fight to the enemy.”

Infantry Marines rely on small unit leadership to ensure every Marine performs to the best of their ability to accomplish the mission.

Cpl. Billy Roberts, a team leader with 2nd Platoon, Fox Company, said that leading his fire team is a humbling experience.

“It can be very rewarding when you teach Marines new things,” said Roberts.  “You can see the progress they make since their first run-throughs.”

Anything can happen at any moment in a combat zone, so when it comes to training Marines it’s important that they learn anything they can to speed up reaction time.

“We intend Marines receiving this training to become proficient in combat operations,” said Roberts. “They need to be able to respond quickly to different contingencies at a moment’s notice even if they don’t know five minutes prior what they’ll be doing.”

The training helps Marines better understand their purpose within the Corps.

“I feel that the training is what every single individual Marine needs to take into consideration to become a good warfighter,” said Pfc. Justin Slattin, a radio operator with 2nd Platoon, Fox Company. “The new training that we do every single day will help save lives.”

Deployment for Training: 2/2 conducts training exercises
II Marine Expeditionary Force
Story by Pfc. Abrey Liggins

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Fort A.P. Hill Firemen and Foresters train for tree-top rescue

U.S. Army Garrison Fort A.P. Hill Fire Captain Samuel H. Hill III sits suspended high above the forest floor between two trees during a five day combined training session where firefighters and foresters learn and practice climbing techniques, ropes and rigging, precision felling, and rescue techniques.

U.S. Army Garrison Fort A.P. Hill Fire Captain Samuel H. Hill III sits suspended high above the forest floor between two trees during a five day combined training session where firefighters and foresters learn and practice climbing techniques, ropes and rigging, precision felling, and rescue techniques.

Fort A.P. Hill Fire and Emergency Services along with members of the Forestry Division recently completed a five day combined training session with Rip Tompkins, a certified professional arborist.

This training provided Garrison personnel with various precision skill sets as well as hands-on training scenarios. Firefighters and foresters learned and practiced climbing techniques, ropes and rigging, precision felling, as well as rescue techniques of trapped or injured workers from elevated positions & locations.

Department of Defense agencies as well as other military assets with a similar training mission as Fort A.P. Hill also utilize professional arbor techniques to affect rescue operations.

This type of training has also aided greatly in the forming of the fire departments standard operating procedures for rescue of trapped or injured personnel from elevated locations.

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