JOINT BASE LEWIS-MCCHORD, Wash. - The Lt. Gen. Sidney T. Weinstein Award recognizes one military intelligence captain a year who demonstrates the values and ideals Weinstein stood for: duty, honor, and country. For the 2018 award, Capt. Bryan Nesbitt, the intelligence officer for the 5th Battalion, 20th Infantry Regiment, was recognized.
"It is a real honor," said Nesbitt, who was previously the commander of Company B, 109th Military Intelligence Battalion, which won the award for Best MI unit in U.S. Forces Command this year. "I was not aware I was even nominated."
He is a very articulate and passionate individual who accomplishes his mission and takes care of his Soldiers, said Lt. Col. Carol Hickey, commander of the 109th MI Bn. He is always able keep them motivated and well-trained. He is a leader who takes the time to think things all the way through.
He was a member of an expeditionary military intelligence unit that has requirements beyond their collection abilities, Hickey continued. These Soldiers have to be physically fit so they can keep up with their maneuver counter parts. They have to be tactically proficient as well as be experts in their technical craft.
"He recognized all those requirements and would create training events to develop the Soldiers competencies in all those elements," said Hickey. "At the same time he would empower his platoon leaders to create their own training and challenge their teams."
"When he took over command of the company, we had just gone done with initial conversion from a battlefield surveillance brigade to an expeditionary military intelligence brigade," said 1st Sgt. Roger Dover, the first sergeant for Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 201st MI Brigade and former first sergeant of Company B. "That all happened in 2016. He had the tasking to take on all these new missions the unit had been assigned - with brand new equipment we had just been fielded."
The Soldiers are what motivate him day-to-day, Nesbitt said. He is a believer of Soldiers doing their duty and serving honorably can still make a difference.
"Every day you have to find ways to make a difference, whether that is making Soldiers' lives easier or commanders'," he said. "I like teaching and seeing Soldiers develop into that future Sergeant Major of the Army one day."
Growing up in the small town of Ambridge, Pennsylvania, Nesbitt worked in a steel mill while in high school and did landscaping and roofing when he was in college. He had been into sports and wanted to join the Army since high school. While playing soccer, he earned scholarships for college and eventually earned his degree in psychology from Wheeling Jesuit University.
"I think everyone growing up who plays sports and are a part of a team sees the allure of joining the military and wanting to serve," said Nesbitt. "But it was members of my family who were officers and noncommissioned officers in the Army that swayed me to go into intelligence, he said as he recalled that his grandfather served the intelligence community during World War II.
"Intelligence drives operations," said Nesbitt. "Everything is pivotal at the beginning stages of the Military Decision Making Process; intelligence has to be there to help commanders make decisions. We have to be able to produce it and explain how we are producing it and (where we are) getting the information from."
There are many different facets of military intelligence such as human intelligence, geospatial intelligence, signals intelligence and open source intelligence, he said. It definitely keeps it from getting boring.
He scheduled to be presented the Weinstein award near the end of June 2018.