FORT STEWART, Ga. The noncommissioned officer is the backbone of the Army and is the pivotal force for the success of every mission in the Army. To celebrate their accomplishments and heritage, 2009 is the Year of the NCO

The Frontline spotlighted one outstanding NCO, Sgt. Maj. Tyrhonda Franklin, communications sergeant major for the 3rd Infantry Division, for his dedication to his job and outstanding service to not only his country but his Soldiers.

"There is one document the Army published for the noncommissioned officer," he said. "That document is the creed of the noncommissioned officer. It embodies everything that an NCO should be. They should constantly talk to their Soldiers, they are responsible for the morale and welfare of their Soldiers and they have to make sure the job is done. That's the bottom line. It is their job to ensure the job is done and it's done right."

Sergeant Major Franklin leads a team to make sure all of the 3rd ID can communicate with each other by making sure computer networks are operational, phone lines are up and, overall, one person can talk to one another by any electronic means. The job also involves keeping Soldiers up to Army standards, such as qualifying at the range.

But aside from meeting the standards, he also realizes what Soldiers mean to the Army.
"Taking care of Soldiers is more important than getting paid on the 1st and the 15th," he said. "The reason I say that is because if we do not have Soldiers, we would not have (any) purpose. Soldiers are the number one factor."

To be the NCO he is today, Sgt. Maj. Franklin has relied on many other great NCOs to make him the leader he is today. He has taken all of what he has learned from them and knows what he wants to tell aspiring leaders.

"It's really one word. And that word is humble," said Sgt. Maj. Franklin. "When I say humble, you have a lot of people who have short tempers, quick to jump to conclusions, don't want to listen to anyone. When you take someone who is humble, who can listen, who can become a blank disk and take different leaders and learn from those different leaders. It makes them an awesome leader. So I would tell any young Soldier wanting to be an NCO or a senior NCO, listen to your good leaders. Seek your good leaders."

But it is more than just keeping Soldiers to the standard and accomplishing the mission Sgt. Maj. Franklin thinks is best of the job.

"You receive medals, you can go to combat, you can receive promotions, but nothing is more rewarding than having a young Soldier that you mentored, that you provided purpose, direction and guidance to and that young Soldier comes back and he says 'thank you.' That's more than any promotion, I, as an NCO, could receive," he said.