PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. - Three Soldiers were accepted into the prestigious Sergeant Audie Murphy Club after passing the rigors of questioning by a board of sergeants major representing all brigades of the U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command, Sept. 28.
Staff Sgt. Barbara Kendricks, a military police officer, 11th Missile Defense Battery, Central Command; Staff Sgt. Felix Loperena, and Staff Sgt. Bryson Taylor, both senior ground mobile forces controllers, Regional Satellite Communications Support Center-Pacific, Hawaii, were inducted into the club.
“It is definitely an honor to be part of such a club that represents the best the Army has to offer when it comes to leadership and mentoring Soldiers,” Loperena said. “One of the best ways to make sure we achieve and accomplish greater things is to surround ourselves with those who are aiming for the same goals, and those who are already there. And that is what SAMC members are - an inspiration and role models, and it makes me proud to be able to contribute to building a better Army.”
The SAMC is a U.S. Army organization for noncommissioned officers whose leadership achievements and outstanding performance merit recognition and entrance into the club. Any Soldier from sergeant to sergeant first class is eligible for membership.
The process begins when Soldiers present themselves to a board of senior noncommissioned officers at their battalion level to determine if they meet organizational requirements. From there, if they pass, they move on to brigade and division levels. The final approving authority is the division level sergeant major, which for USASMDC is Command Sgt. Maj. Finis A. Dodson.
“I know the value of the SAMC. I believe in it, and when it comes to new inductees, I want them to understand that they will be active participants not only in the military, but their surrounding community,” Dodson said. “Audie Murphy was recognized as the best of the best and these Soldiers were selected to be the embodiment of second to none.”
To qualify for the club, inductee must know how to care for Soldiers; regulations and Army policies; how to be legally, ethically and morally correct in anything one does; and be willing to give back to the community.
“The three Soldiers selected truly exemplify what the club stands for,” Dodson said. “They understand their Soldiers and how to take care of them. I commend them on their perseverance to get to this level. It really shows they are focused on leadership.”
Taylor touched on leadership and where he wants to take his career going forward.
“Now is not the time to stop, but for me to help expand a positive reputation of the club while training and developing Soldiers to reach their full potential,” he said. “I will continue to do my best to create a better Army one day at a time, leading from the front.”