By U.S. ArmyApril 17, 2019
Operation Homefront recently announced the seven winners of the 2019 Military Child of the Year Award, an annual award celebrating the achievements of our military children.
The Army winner was Elisabeth McCallum Polleys, daughter of Tank-automotive and Armaments Command Judge Advocate Major Tara McCallum.
"Supporting the military family is a great way to help a Service member," said McCallum. "I am thankful to Operation Homefront for recognizing the children of our military. So often they are left behind in the shuffle. They not only lose friends every 2-3 years for a PCS [Permanent Change of Station] move, but they miss out on continuing with their activities, sports, and even academics. Military children will learn new cultures and environments, they make new friends while keeping old ones, and although their old activities may not be offered at their new home, they will learn/join a new activity, not giving up. Being resilient is what military kids do."
McCallum Polleys is a junior at L'Anse Creuse High School North and lives in Macomb, Michigan.
"I am extremely honored to be selected for the 2019 Military Child of the Year - Army award sponsored by Operation Homefront. I hope I can inspire other military kids and make them feel as if they are not alone and that we are experiencing the same challenges together," said McCallum Polleys.
At her high school she helps mentor incoming freshmen and performs in many of her school's theatrical productions. In addition to her school activities, she also volunteers with several community service organizations.
Her school's associate principal praised her for completing over 170 community service hours, far exceeding the school's requirement for 40 hours.
In addition to her volunteer activities, McCallum Polleys maintains a 3.9 grade point average and holds a part-time job.
After undergoing surgery in 2017 to correct a condition that forced her to miss the second half of her freshman year, McCallum Polleys began leading a monthly support group for other young women who are dealing with the same condition.
As with many military children, she moved and changed schools several times. When her mother was recently reassigned from Honolulu to Detroit, McCallum Polleys found that many of the activities in which she had previously participated were either not available or it was too late to join them.
She credits her experience as a military child with making her resilient enough to overcome the obstacles and difficulties she has encountered by volunteering with new organizations and recognizing that each place has much to offer if you look for it.
"Moving frequently is both the worst and best part of military life," she says, "if you learn to embrace the 'well-traveled life'."
Six recipients earned the award based on the armed forces branch in which a parent either serves or has served -- Army, Marine Corps, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard, and the National Guard. Each recipient was selected for his/her scholarship, volunteerism, leadership, extracurricular involvement, and other criteria while facing the challenges of military family life. A panel of independent, volunteer judges with deep roots in the military-support community selected Each service branch's awardee. The seventh award is the Military Child of the Year Award for Innovation.
McCallum Polleys, along with the other award recipients will travel to Washington, D.C., where senior leaders of each branch of service will present the awards at the April 18th gala.
"These seven award recipients are truly exceptional young people who have absolutely shined in terms of academic achievement and service to others -- positive representatives of the larger community of extraordinary military kids," said Brig. Gen. (ret.) John I. Pray Jr., president and CEO of Operation Homefront.
"Each of our over 350 nominees for our 11th annual Military Child of the Year Awards personified resiliency, leadership, achievement, and strength of character. Their families and their communities can be justifiably proud of them -- and we are too."
Operation Homefront has been serving America's military families since 2002. More information about the Military Child of the Year Awards is available at www.militarychildoftheyear.org.
TACOM's highly skilled and uniquely qualified professionals around the world are critical to supporting Army readiness. The personal commitment of TACOM's workforce ensures our men and women in uniform receive the support they need and deserve.
TACOM's six arsenals, manufacturing centers and depots manufacture and reset ground and support equipment, generating readiness and operational capability throughout Army formations as part of the Army's Organic Industrial Base. When the force needs equipment or parts manufactured, repaired, upgraded or modernized, industrial artisans from the Army's OIB deliver.
TACOM's workforce includes highly skilled and uniquely qualified professionals, from industrial artisans to senior logisticians and business analysts. The largely civilian workforce is critical to supporting Army readiness. We must shape the organization for efficiency, and ensure our workforce has the right people in the right positions doing the right work. Our efforts must be focused on output and an end state that provides materiel readiness for our Army.
TACOM's Integrated Logistics Support Center facilitates warfighting readiness for U.S. forces by executing repair parts planning and supply chain management for over 3,500 weapon systems. These systems form the core of America's ground combat capability. When the force needs critical readiness driver components delivered, whether at home or abroad, it depends on TACOM. TACOM is improving Equipment On-Hand rates across the Army, moving millions of pieces of equipment to the right units to ensure the Army's ability to deploy, fight and win.
The Detroit Arsenal, home to TACOM headquarters, is the only active-duty U.S. Army installation in the tri-state (Michigan, Ohio and Indiana) area. Detroit Arsenal and its Michigan-based personnel contribute billions of dollars in economic impact to the state's economy each year.