The Maneuver Support Center of Excellence and Fort Leonard Wood honored 16 instructors who competed against their peers and earned the "Instructor of the Year" award for fiscal year 2013 in Lincoln Hall Auditorium June 18.

"An instructor plays a pivotal role in the training process beginning with the initial training given upon entry into the service to the many technical and educational schools one must attend throughout their stay in the military. The instructor's knowledge and leadership ability is essential in an effective learning environment," a Fort Leonard Wood official said.

Maj. Gen. Leslie Smith, MSCoE and Fort Leonard Wood commanding general, was the presiding officer and the 399th Army Band played music for the ceremony.

Smith spoke directly to the award recipients and he told them they are one of the big reasons why Fort Leonard Wood's students leave here and become successful.

"We do good things here. I've got to see many of you work. The reason why Fort Leonard Wood is great is because of you. I can see the excellence and the passion you have for teaching. You have a special skill to get your point across to people," Smith said.

For consideration in the competition, each candidate submitted a nomination packet, which included a video of the instructor teaching a class in their area of expertise. Prior to the ceremony, the audience of service members and civilians watched a video montage of their competition entries.

"The annual Instructor of the Year competition is voluntary and anyone with six months certified instructor experience can participate," said Bryan Boytek, Staff and Faculty Development training instructor.

The winners from the Fort Leonard Wood competition will next compete at the Training and Doctrine Command level.

"The individual schools hold their own internal competitions and all non-proponent units compete against each other. What we submit for the TRADOC level competition is winners from each category, from each school, so we turn in a total of up to 20 names of Fort Leonard Wood winners," Boytek said.


Officer category:

Capt. Benjamin Meier, USAES

Capt. Michael Brimage, USAMPS

Capt. Dane Kappler, USACBRNS

Capt. Chad Forsythe, MSCoE Non-proponent

Warrant officer category:

Chief Warrant Officer 2 Jose Bermudez, USAES

Chief Warrant Officer 2 Aaron Green, USAMPS

Noncommissioned officer category:

Staff Sgt. Romanfermin Borja, USAES

Sgt. 1st Class Brian Leonard, USAMPS

Sgt. 1st Class Yvonne Smith, USACBRNS

Sgt. Benjamin Grijalva, MSCoE Non-proponent

Civilian category:

Jonathan Paton, USAES

Marvin Applegate, USAMPS

Roderick Farrar, USACBRNS

Aaron Monson, MSCoE Non-proponent

Educator of the Year category:

Staff Sgt. Thomas White, USAES

Scott Rocker, MSCoE Non-proponent