By Mr. Johnathon Orrell (SDDC)September 26, 2018
For the latest edition of the Surface Warrior Spotlight, we scoured the dockets of the Staff Judge Advocate's (SJA) office and put Breck Thompson, a paralegal specialist for the Military Surface Deployment and Distribution Command (SDDC), on the stand.
Thompson joined SDDC in 2011 as the command sergeant major's secretary in the command group until she moved to the SJA office as a secretary…then back to the command group as a secretary…then back to the SJA office as a paralegal.
"Each move I made kept me moving up in my career and kept giving me the experience to get to where I am now," she said.
As a homegrown country girl, she enjoys spending her time with her family, fishing, hunting, taking care of her cattle and just about anything that gets her into the great outdoors.
"I grew up being outdoors with my dad. It's something I raised my kids with and it's something my husband Ron and I just love to do," she said. "I have always felt a connection to the outdoors since I was a little girl, and it's just something that makes me the happiest."
She was nominated for the Spotlight by Charles Hayes, SDDC's deputy chief counsel, and if you ask around SDDC, she is someone who is well liked and is known to be dependable.
Now it's time to bring Breck into the Surface Warrior Spotlight - a program that highlights different members of the SDDC workforce every few weeks through a series of interview-style questions that focus on his or her unique background, personal stories and experiences.
Q: What is your role at SDDC?
A: I keep the attorneys and SJA office running efficiently.
Q: If you had to eat one meal, every day for the rest of your life, what would it be?
A: Crab legs. I love to eat seafood as long as it is fresh. I should probably live near the ocean instead of the Midwest; it would save me some money…lol.
Q: What are your Top Three Life Highlights so far?
1. The birth of my two children. My children highlight my life through achieving things, making me laugh, and just spending time with me now that they are grown adults.
2. My marriage to my current husband. He makes me want to be a better person. We have experienced a lot in the 4 years we have been together and have done a lot together.
3. My career. I wouldn't be where I am today without my career. I started out as GS-5 and have grown and made my way up to where I am today through hard work, a good work ethic, and a positive attitude.
Q: What do you like to do in your spare time?
A: I like to fish, hunt and take care of our cattle. It's a rush to catch a fish - you never know how big it is until you reel it in. With hunting there is always a chance of killing that monster buck. And I never had cattle until three years ago and it is a new experience for me and I really enjoy it.
Q: If you could switch your job with anyone else within SDDC, whose job would you want?
A: I would like to be Commanding General for the day just to see what it was like…and to have my own parking space.
Q: What is your favorite line from a movie?
A: "If you build it they will come," from Field of Dreams. It reminds you that with hard work you can reach your dreams.
Q: Are you messy or organized?
A: I might be a little messy, but I know where everything is.
Q: What is the best vacation you've been on?
A: I took a cruise to the Cayman Islands; the beaches were beautiful and I had a great time.
Q: How would you describe your personality?
A: Fun and outgoing.
Q: How do you define success?
A: Achieving your prosperity.
Q: Before working at SDDC, what was the most unusual or interesting job you've ever had?
A: Working at a halfway house as a case worker.
Q: If you were an animal what would you be?
A: It would have to be an eagle. They are majestic and you could soar above and see all the beautiful places in the world.
Q: What is your least favorite food?
A: I do not like mushrooms. I don't like the texture and it's a fungus…not much else to say about that.
Q: What is your life motto or personal mantra?
A: Don't be too busy building a life you forget to live. Sometimes people are so busy in life they let life pass them by. Sometimes they need to slow down and enjoy the moment.
Q: What is one thing people would be surprised to learn about you?
A: I am a World Champion Coon Hunter 2012 for the American Coon Hunters Association.
Q: What is your favorite sport to watch?
A: I like to watch hockey live. I like to watch the fights.
Q: What three things are on your bucket list?
1. Go fishing in Alaska during the salmon run and see the Northern Lights while I am there.
2. Go to Australia on a Safari hunt.
3. Go to Niagara Falls.
Q: What is one superpower you wish you had?
A: The ability to read people's minds - so I knew what they were thinking.
Q: What is the greatest challenge you have had to overcome in your life thus far?
A: Going through a divorce was one of the hardest challenges I have ever had to do, but I have become successful through it all.
Q: What is the weirdest thing you've ever eaten?
Q: What is your biggest pet peeve?
A: People saying they will do something and then they don't do it.
Q: What is your favorite thing to do in the St. Louis area?
A: I like to go watch the St. Louis Blues hockey team. I enjoy the game and atmosphere.
Q: What is your greatest fear?
A: Snakes. I hate snakes -- well, live snakes.
Q: What is your hidden talent?
A: I have a good shot with a gun.
Q: What would you do (for a career) if you weren't doing this?
A: Cattle farmer, I enjoy messing with cows.
Q: If you could go back in time and give 13-year-old Breck a piece of advice, what would it be?
A: Slow down and enjoy life.
Q: What does true leadership mean to you?
A: Leadership to me means having good communication with your team, taking care of your team, and being part of the team.
Q: What is the favorite part about working for SDDC?
A: Being a part of a winning team
Q: What is one thing you have always wanted to try but never have?
A: I would like to skydive. I have never done it because my husband says it is too dangerous. I don't know why he's so afraid…if something should happen to me he would be a rich man..lol.
Q: What did you want to be when growing up, and why did you want to be that?
A: I wanted to be a teacher because teachers had a great influence on my life and I wanted to influence others.
Q: What makes you the happiest??
A: I like to travel, I like to experience new things, learn different things, and see different cultures. It makes me happy traveling because I am making memories and that is the only thing in life that you can take with you.
Q: Where is your favorite place to eat?
A: AJs in Florida. It's a seafood menu and I am always there with family and friends when I'm traveling.
Q: What has been your favorite project at SDDC?
A: Working with everyone at the Holiday parties to make them a huge success.
Q: Where would you like to go on a dream vacation?
A: Bora Bora. It looks like a beautiful place and I would like to experience it.
Take a look at Breck's Surface Warrior Spotlight video on YouTube at https://youtu.be/y1i6-iSU4mo.