2010 NCO/SOY Day 4 - Ceremony 05
Staff Sgt. Russell Kojo and Spec. Sherri Jo Gallagher, both representing the U.S. Army Accessions Command, were named the 2010 TRADOC Noncommissioned Officer and Soldier of the Year at a ceremony today at the Bay Breeze Community Center on Fort Monroe, Va. Here they stand with Lt. Gen. John Sterling, deputy commanding general and chief of staff of TRADOC, and Command Sgt. Maj. David Bruner, senior enlisted adviser of TRADOC. Photo by Frank Brown.

FORT MONROE, Va. (July 15, 2010) - Staff Sgt. Russell Kojo, an ROTC instructor at the University of California-Berkeley, and Spec. Sherri Jo Gallagher, a member of the U.S. Army Marksmanship Unit, were named the 2010 U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command Noncommissioned Officer and Soldier of the Year during luncheon ceremony today at the Bay Breeze Community Center here.

"I still couldn't believe it was me," said Kojo, upon hearing his name announced. "The other competitors ... showed exactly why they were here."

"It was kind of nerve-wracking, sitting at this table all day long," said Gallagher about the anticipation. "The competitors made it a tough competition and just to be able to stand out is an honor."

The four-day long competition allowed the top four NCOs and four Soldiers compete for the title in a battery of physical, mental and leadership tasks. The participants came from: the U.S. Army Accessions Command, the U.S. Army Combined Arms Center, the U.S. Army Combined Arms Support Command and Sustainment Center for Excellence, and Initial Military Training.

"They didn't have us miss a single minute; they had us going from Day One," said Gallagher. "It was really neat because they kept us in the dark through the competition and you have to adapt every step of the way ... you had to adjust accordingly."

Kojo and Gallagher will advance to the Army-level Best Warrior Competition which will take place from October 17-22 at Fort Lee, Va. They will be competing against NCOs and Soldiers of the Year from 12 Army commands from across the globe. Looking ahead, Kojo cites accountability in preparing for the competition to be key.

"[We'll] definitely be contacting each other a lot," said Kojo. "Pick each other's brains and actually get on each other's backs [and asking] ... 'Are you working out more' Are you studying more'' For me, I know I'll be working out more than before."

<i>Click here for photos from the 2010 TRADOC NCO and Soldier of the Year Competition: <a href="http://bit.ly/8YW2tb" target="_blank">http://www.flickr.com/photos/tradoc/sets/72157624482391796/</a>

Click here to learn more about the competitors: <a href="http://bit.ly/NCOSOY2010" target="_blank">http://bit.ly/NCOSOY2010</a></i>

Page last updated Thu July 15th, 2010 at 16:02