CAMP CARROLL, South Korea -- Sgt. 1st Class Rizmel Paguio, who is assigned to the U.S. Army Medical Materiel Center-Korea, has been named a recipient of the Federal Asian Pacific American Council’s 2021 Uniformed Services Award.
The annual award recognizes and honors members of the uniformed services, which include the armed forces, commissioned public health corps and commissioned corps of the National Ocean and Atmospheric Administration.
Paguio was one of 10 award winners announced during the FAPAC’s National Leadership Training Program event May 26. The program coincides each year with Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month.
“This award is truly a blessing for me and my family,” said Paguio, a member of the 563rd Medical Logistics Company at USAMMC-K. “Being recognized for this prestigious award is an honor and I am humbled to be nominated.”
As the first sergeant for USAMMC-K, which serves as the theater lead agent for medical materiel, or TLAMM, on the Korean Peninsula, Paguio has taken a leadership role in the team’s comprehensive response efforts to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“My contribution to this fight is motivation and mentorship,” he said. “My main job is to ensure that Soldiers in our unit are taken care of, trained and ready to fight tonight. Here in USAMMC-K/563rd MLC, we highly believe that if we take care of our people, they will take care of the mission.”
In congratulating Paguio, USAMMC-K Commander Lt. Col. Marcus D. Perkins said the recognition shows “that we are more powerful together.”
“Sgt. 1st Class Paguio is a leader,” he said. “… He is the right person at the right time to promote the importance of acquiring, developing, employing, retaining and understanding the needs of a diverse workforce being the centerpiece of our competitive advantage.”
Paguio was born and raised in the city of Calamba in the Phillipines’ Laguna province. He and his sister were raised there by their mother and step-father before migrating to the U.S. in July 2000.
Perkins emphasized that there are more than 300,000 Asian-Americans, native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders among the ranks of American military veterans.
Promoting and understanding the importance of diversity, equity and inclusion remain core principles at USAMMC-K and its sister direct reporting units under Army Medical Logistics Command.
“Every person on our team deserves an equal opportunity to excel based on their character, talents and determination to succeed,” Perkins said. “We promote diversity as we are a diverse country, Army and organization.”