By Staff Sgt. Mark MirandaDecember 23, 2015
JOINT BASE LEWIS-MCCHORD, Wash. - Career counselors from across the 7th Infantry Division came together to be recognized for their achievements during an awards ceremony at the Courage Inn Dining Facility, Dec. 17.
Staff Sgt. James Small, a career counselor with 555th Engineer Brigade, 7th Infantry Division was selected as the division's career counselor of the year, and went on to represent the 7th ID during the I Corps Career Counselor of the Year competition last month.
"I am pretty happy with the results because it was very tough competition," Small said. "I am honored to have had the opportunity and I will continue to study and streamline my board skills."
"The challenging part for me was the studying. I didn't know what to expect because this is the first time that I have ever been to the Career Counselor of the Year Board," Small said of his preparations.
Other areas included knowledge of retention policies, options and incentives and eligibility for transition to Reserve component.
The job of an Army career counselor is to help Soldiers that want to stay in the military longer than their first enlistment.
"This has been a tremendous year for 7th Infantry Division, and the career counselors we're honoring today did an exceptional job meeting retention goals, both active and reserve component," said Sgt. Maj. Hayward Smith, 7th Infantry Division command career counselor.
The 17th Field Artillery Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division Artillery, 201st Expeditionary Military Intelligence Brigade, 555th Engineer Brigade and Headquarters Support Company 7th Infantry Division all received "mission accomplished" awards.
Top brigade awards went to 2-2 Stryker Brigade Combat Team and 16th Combat Aviation Brigade.
Two battalions were recognized with awards for their success: 1st Battalion, 94th Field Artillery and 2nd Brigade Support Battalion.
Maj. Gen. Thomas James, commander, 7th Infantry Division and Command Sgt. Maj. Jack Love presented each of the awards.
"We've got the best Army in the world because of your efforts to re-enlist quality Soldiers, keeping our most talented people," James said.