By Mr. Jeffrey M Soares (Army Medicine)December 11, 2019
The U.S. Army Medical Materiel Development Activity has announced that Army Lt. Col. Sandi K. Parriott has received the U.S. Army Medical Department's 9A Proficiency Designator, which recognizes "the highest level of professional achievement within each AMEDD Corps' specialty." Parriott is a member of the Army Veterinary Corps and earned her proficiency certificate in the dual areas of Veterinary Comparative Medicine and Veterinary Preventative Medicine.
Joining the USAMMDA team earlier this year, Parriott arrived from the 30th Medical Brigade in Germany where she served as director, Force Health Protection, and command veterinarian. She currently serves as director for USAMMDA's Force Health Protection Division, which is tasked with providing an urgent treatment, diagnostic or prophylactic capability against high consequence threats in accordance with federal regulations and Department of Defense instructions.
This new assignment marks Parriott's return to the U.S. Army Medical Research and Development Command, as she served at the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research early in her military career.
"I started out as a vet in private practice for 10 years before I joined the Army," Parriott explained. "After I received my doctorate in parasitology, I went to WRAIR as the division veterinarian for experimental therapeutics, where I oversaw various animal models for all of its protocols."
"I moved from WRAIR to the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Chemical Defense," she continued, "then I took command of a public health district at Fort Belvoir, Virginia, for over three years before heading to the 30th Medical Brigade, and now I'm happy to be here at USAMMDA."
Earlier this month, Parriott received her certificate of proficiency from Brig. Gen. Michael J. Talley, commanding general of the USAMRDC and Fort Detrick, during his tour of the USAMMDA facility. In presenting Parriott with her certificate, Talley praised the Soldier for her service to her country and her dedication to excellence within her chosen career field. He continued by acknowledging the difficulty in achieving the 9A Proficiency Designator, stating that only the top one percent of Army Medicine professionals reach this unique plateau.
In her role as director of the FHP Division, Parriott oversees military medical activities that include the critical FDA-approval of Emergency Use Authorizations, Expanded Access Investigational New Drug Protocols, and Individual Patient Expanded Access to help treat and save the lives of military and civilian patients throughout the world.
"At the 30th Medical Brigade, I was handling the operational side of FHP, but here at USAMMDA, I'm involved in the strategic aspects of it," said Parriott. "My job is to get critical products to our Warfighters as quickly as possible, and these include investigational products such as vaccines, prophylactics, treatments and devices, which are still undergoing advanced development."
"Once these products have enough safety and efficacy data, we're able to field them to our troops, early and as needed," she added.
Per the AMEDD Medical Service Corps Awards and Recognition webpage, "Officers selected for this ['A' Proficiency Designator] honor are leaders in their specialty and have made significant contributions to the advancement of knowledge in their particular field through extensive publication and active national professional organization membership. These professionals have worked hard and dedicated a significant amount of time to become a distinct asset to the AMEDD, both as an officer and an expert in their field. They are considered eminently qualified to chair a department, division, or service; have attained full professional status; and have obtained national prominence in their field."
Army Col. Gina Adam, USAMMDA commander, congratulated Parriott for her professional accomplishments, stating, "Individuals who earn this designation are essentially recognized twice: first by the person who recognized their achievements and nominated them, and then by the board that reviews all of the nominations and makes the selections. I'm pleased to highlight Lt. Col. Parriott's qualities as an officer and medical professional -- her professional excellence serves as an outstanding example for junior officers throughout the Army Medical Department."
Without question, Parriott is very proud of her career achievements thus far, and this new addition to her resume brings a smile to her face.
"Earning the 9A Proficiency Designator is the pinnacle of my career, both personally and professionally," said Parriott. "It's probably the highest honor I could achieve from my peers, and having Brig. Gen. Talley present the certificate to me was very special -- I'll certainly never forget that day."