The 'go to' guy
January 28, 2014
His attention to detail amazes his supervisors, his calm demeanor energizes his subordinates and his capability to accomplish the mission regardless of the obstacles in the way astounds his peers.
He started his Air Force career on the flight line, putting in long hours of hard work and paying attention to the smallest of details to be one of the best Airmen in the contracting specialist field. His attention to detail earned Air Force Senior Master Sgt. Scott LeBlanc, contracting support specialist with AFICA, Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, the 2013 Air Force Installation Contracting Senior Noncommissioned Officer of the Year.
"I was taken aback when I found out I won the award. It is a super amazing honor to win," said LeBlanc. "I know most of the people I was competing with. They are absolute professionals. The fact that they were able to recognize me as the top professional for this organization was a real honor."
LeBlanc, who has served in the Air Force for more than 21 years, spent 10 months preparing for Operational Contract Support Joint Exercise 2014 by coordinating all the Air Force participants, doing the purchase request packages for the regional contracting centers and bringing in people from outside of contracting, such as the communications support team.
"He is self-motivated, has unlimited initiative and he is extremely good at working with other individuals," said Air Force Col. Renee Richardson, director with the Air Force Installation Contracting Agency.
With LeBlanc's work ethic and open personality, he is not afraid to talk to anyone. He can tackle any problem thrown at him regardless if it has to deal with contracting. He has the ability to work with people to overcome the dilemma and accomplish the mission, said Richardson.
"He comes at every problem he encounters with a very good attitude. For instance, we were trying to get our assignments team to brief our officers, but at the last minute they were not able to come down to Fort Bliss, (Texas)," said Richardson. "So, I identified a location and he used his phone to connect to the audio equipment, and his personal computer to hook up the audio and visual equipment, and we were able to deliver the information to the officers and the assignments team. It was obstacle after obstacle after obstacle and, in every case, he figured out a way to make it work."
He is the type of leader any officer would want on their team, according to Army Lt. Col. Robert Mathews, commander of the 901st Contingency Contracting Battalion at Fort Hood, Texas.
"I have received a lot of feedback from both officers and NCOs from different services saying this guy really represents all that we would want in a senior NCO," said Mathews. "It is his experience in exercises like OCSJX-14 and his real-world involvement that makes him the force multiplier we want in our seniors."
"Not only is he a subject-matter expert in his field, he is helping others to be that as well," Mathews added.
LeBlanc has had a demanding career, from relief efforts in the Philippines where Typhoon Haiyan made landfall to his deployment to Fallujah, Iraq.
"My job, in addition to preparing for the OCSJX-14, was to coordinate the operational relief through Pacific Command with the Marines on the ground to ensure they had everything they needed to carry out their mission," said LeBlanc. "We assisted over 15,000 people."
LeBlanc said some of his best memories are from working with the Marines.
"I was the only Air Force contracting officer who was part of the Marine contingency when I deployed to Fallujah in 2008," said LeBlanc. "Being the only Air Force person on a Marine installation, you were almost treated like royalty in a sense because you stood out and they weren't use to seeing an Air Force individual tied to them."
"It is one of the memories I will take with me forever," added LeBlanc.
LeBlanc's career into the future could be limitless: seniors and peers alike look up to him. They see an Airman who is exceptionally meticulous and professional, said Mathews.
"Senior Master Sgt. LeBlanc's next career move should be to serve as a superintendent in a large contracting organization," said Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Tommie W. Rogers, chief enlisted manager with AFICA. "The superintendent role will allow our Airmen maximum exposure to his professional skills and leadership abilities. He is always willing to tackle the toughest tasks and seeks out opportunities to excel."
Just being in LeBlanc's make-shift office at the Mission Training Center on Fort Bliss, Texas, one could see his diligence and attention to detail. He was the guy everyone relied upon: the go-to-guy.
"His ability to think strategically while maintaining focus on the smallest details is commendable," said Rogers. "Additionally, his self-improvement efforts and community service efforts personify the whole-person and make him a role model to emulate."
LeBlanc said his plans for the future include taking the test for chief, staying in the Air Force about four more years and possibly transitioning into a civilian job in the contracting sector with the Air Force.