FORT RUCKER, Ala. -- The chief of the Fort Rucker Military Personnel Division was one of 15 Installation Management Command employees who were honored as IMCOM Stalwart Award winners during a global teleconference Nov. 17.
Thyais Scott was presented the award in person by Chester “Chet” Witkowski, Fort Rucker deputy to the garrison commander, and Command Sgt. Maj. Raymond P. Quitugua Jr., garrison command sergeant major, at the Fort Rucker garrison employee town hall Dec. 15 in The Landing.
“Honestly, I am still in shock,” she said about the honor. “Being recognized for such a prestigious award means so much.”
During the employee town hall, Witkowski likened earning the award to winning an Olympic gold medal.
“When you have 50,000 employees worldwide, and they give 10-15 of these out a year, that says something,” he said. “It means you made an impact above your paygrade, you made a significant impact to the entire workforce and the employees around you while supporting Soldiers and their families.”
Scott’s impact continues to positively affect personnel garrison-wide even as she now serves in a different position.
“Currently, I am the chief of the military personnel division; however, my time as the workforce development specialist is why I was recommended for the Stalwart Award,” Scott added. “I was tasked to create a workforce development program for the garrison, which was quite the feat as I didn’t have a blueprint to follow because I was the garrison’s first WFD Specialist.
“The mission was to create a program that modeled the IMCOM Service Culture Campaign,” she said. “I did this by developing the supervisor stand-down that provided a day for all leaders to meet in one place to learn supervisor specific topics, and provide leaders with a safe space for them to share their experiences and dialogue about specific topics. I also developed the garrison’s mentor, job shadowing and developmental assignment programs to cross-level training and development opportunities for employees.”
Scott said her philosophy for success is “finding what you are truly passionate about and diving deep into that. I often tell people that you have to get comfortable being uncomfortable, and when you find this space … God places the best in life on the other side of fear.”
She said for the future, she wants “to continue to mentor, coach and motivate people to be the best version of themselves.”
Hailing from Gadsden, which Scott describes as “a small city in north Alabama,” she was raised by her single mom.
“As the youngest of three siblings, she often positioned me to be the leader of the family,” she said. “I wouldn’t be who I am today without my mom pushing me to be great no matter what obstacles I faced.
“I met my dear husband when I was 15 years old, and a few years later we had our son and got married,” she continued. “I started my Department of Defense career in 2007 as an installation access control specialist in Germany. I moved to Fort Rucker in 2008, where I started within the military personnel division as a GS-4, Soldiers promotion, human resource assistant.
“This is where I developed my love of taking care of Soldiers,” Scott added. “I would get so excited publishing promotion orders for our junior enlisted Soldiers. From there, I spent a few years learning multiple areas within the division. In 2010, I was promoted to GS-5, and in 2011, I was promoted to GS-7 as the lead human resource assistant. In this position I began to understand leadership and how successfully leading a group of people contributed to the success of the overall mission.
“My goal was to be a branch manager, and three years later, I was able to achieve my goal,” she said. “In this position, I want to be a leader who leads by example and encourages the team to be the very best version of themselves in order to take care of our customers daily.
“The game changer in my career was deciding to leave the MPD, a place where I felt the most comfortable, to apply for a position outside of that division,” Scott added. “This position was installation voting – I knew that after I mastered that position, I would have a little time on my hand to learn other areas within the DHR headquarters.
“This is where I learned civilian personnel actions, and also an understanding of how developing people personally and professionally truly contributes to the overall success of garrison,” she continued. “Today, as the chief of the military personnel division, I lead an exceptional group of professionals who love taking care of our Soldiers, and I am fortunate to be a part of this team.”