Success-driven Soldier named Garrison's Best
April 30, 2009
<b> FORT STEWART, Ga.</B> Specialist Jeffry Johnson is a Soldier driven to succeed, not just in life's big events but every day. He's a military police officer with Headquarters and Headquarters Company, U.S. Army Garrison, Directorate of Emergency Services at Fort Stewart. Specialist Johnson's personal drive to put his best foot forward every day led his to being recognized as the Soldier of the Year for U.S. Army Garrison, Fort Stewart and Hunter Army Airfield, April 21.
"I like the concept of working," said the 29-year-old Greensburg, La., native. "I've worked my whole life, and I think when you work at something, you want to always do your best. You want to succeed every day. You want to put your best foot forward as soon as you get out of bed."
Specialist Johnson was awarded an Army Commendation Medal and given a plaque recognizing his achievement by Command Sgt. Maj. James Ervin, garrison command sergeant major for Stewart, and Command Sgt. Maj. David Sampleton, garrison command sergeant major for Hunter. Specialist Johnson will soon take his drive for success to the next level and compete for the Installation Management Command, Southeast Region's Soldier of the Year at Fort Benning, Ga., May 18-22.
The IMCOM competition will be Spc. Johnson's eighth board appearance. He said his unit continues to support his and other Soldiers' preparation for board appearances with special training.
"We have a study group that meet 7:30 a.m. to lunch then 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.," said the seven-year veteran whose assignments include a combat tour in Iraq. "We just did a six-mile road march this morning, working our way up to 12. We've also had weapons qualification training, combat life saving and land navigation training."
Specialist Johnson, who likes target shooting, hunting, playing football and lifting weights, said the most challenging part of competing in Soldier of the Month, Quarter and Year competitions is appearing before the board itself.
"The hardest thing for me is standing in front of the board," he explained. "I'm not use to public speaking. The easiest part for me is the physical stuff like the (Army Physical Fitness Test) and road march."
Specialist Johnson said he is planning to make the Army a 20-year career then leave the service to become a game warden, which would allow him to continue to work in law enforcement as well as being able to work outdoors. Whatever his future holds for him, he said he will always to do his best.