CONTINGENCY OPERATING SITE MAREZ, Iraq - Staff Sgt. Steven Newman, a native of Hobart, Ind., bested six other noncommissioned officers to be named the United States Division-North NCO of the Quarter at the quarterly competition held at Contingency Operating Base Speicher, Iraq.

The 29-year-old field artilleryman assigned to Battery B, 5th Battalion, 82nd Field Artillery Regiment, 4th Advise and Assist Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division, participated in multiple academic and leadership development boards, including three Soldier of the Quarter boards, and was a runner-up for the title of 1st Cavalry Division's NCO of the Year

"I love everything about competing at these boards," said Newman, who has served in the U.S. Army for almost six years. "Using experience from my past boards, I knew I needed to be head and shoulders above the other NCOs I was competing against. I tried to give the most thorough answers, giving detailed responses to every question."

After successfully besting his peers in the NCO of the Quarter board, Newman competed in the Sergeant Audie Murphy Club board the next day-another strenuous and challenging board that further tested the field artilleryman's knowledge and leadership skills as an NCO.

Newman's performance at the board earned him the prestigious club's medallion, which he will receive when he is inducted as a member into the club later this year.

"It was a privilege just to be selected to take part in the Audie Murphy Club Board, because they only take the best of the best," said Newman, currently on his third deployment to Iraq. "The only thing that feels better than knowing I will be a part of this organization is training my Soldiers so they can have the opportunity to compete in these boards and be successful too."

When Newman isn't studying or competing in military boards, he is working with his platoon as one of the senior section chiefs in charge of training and maintenance of M109A6 Paladins, the unit's self-propelled howitzers.

"Just like how basketball and football players have coaches and mentors, Staff Sgt. Newman is my coach," said Pfc. Troy Taylor, a field artilleryman who works in Newman's section.

Since joining Newman, the 20-year-old won a Soldier of the Month board and participated in the battalion-level Soldier of the Quarter board.

"(Newman) has that effect on his Soldiers," said Taylor, currently on his first deployment to Iraq. "Anytime he comes up to you, he'll quiz you on something that is in a field manual or Army regulation so you can further increase your military knowledge. He's already recognized throughout the brigade as a good NCO, and he just wants (his Soldiers) to be as successful as him."

With future plans to win the next Soldier of the Quarter board and return home safely to Fort Hood, Texas, following this deployment, both Newman and Taylor said they share the same goal: the Soldiers plan to serve at least 20 years in the military, passing on their knowledge and love of military boards to their Soldiers.

Page last updated Fri July 22nd, 2011 at 12:16