Sherri Adams received the National Defence System of the Republic of Lithuania Medal of Merit for Civilians on May 3 at the Embassy of the Republic of Lithuania to the U.S. in Washington, D.C. She was recognized by Arvydas Anušauskas, the minister of national defence of the Republic of Lithuania.
This National Defence System level award is awarded to civilians for 10 years of distinguished service and contributions to the national defence system. It is bestowed on civilians for extraordinary capabilities and over-the-top performance in strengthening the national security. The Medal features a reading that translates to “Freedom, Honor, Homeland” to symbolize the awardee’s dedication in civilian service.
Adams has been the Lithuanian country program manager since spring 2022. She was previously involved with the U.S. Central Command on the United Arab Emirates team. Adams started at the Security Assistance Command in 2018 as a CPM in the U.S. Indo-Pacific Command; she supported a case load of small Indo-Pacific countries. She was with the Communications-Electronics Command Security Assistance Management Directorate for eight years – five years as a weapon system manager and three years as the manager of their International Military Education and Training Language Lab program.
“The Lithuanian team is amazing,” Adams said. “They have known and faced down communism and oppression in their country in our lifetime. They know the sacrifices and bravery required to maintain freedom and democracy firsthand. As a result, they value it deeply. I am honored to be given the opportunity to support the efforts of such courageous people.”
Adams was surprised but honored to be recognized. “I only hope to continue to deserve their appreciation for my efforts each day,” she said.
Her teammate Mark Sullivan, division chief of the U.S. European Command Regional Operations, said Adams understands the importance of relationships with partners and allies in the region and that “she is very supportive with the Security Cooperation Office in helping countries realize capability gaps leading to clearly defined requirements and actionable letters of request.”
Adams said her counterparts contribute significantly to the team efforts and successes in the Lithuania program. Amira Badawi from the Defense Security Cooperation Agency, Colin Peevy from the Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Army for Defense Exports and Cooperation, and Maj. Chris Hawkins and Lt. Col. Stephen Chu from the Office of Defense Cooperation make her job easy, she said. She went on to say she has had great leadership in the EUCOM Division, first Ryan Nichols and now Sullivan. Both made every effort to provide solid advice and have provided an excellent support structure to accomplish her goals with Lithuania.
She received tremendous support from the various SAMDs and PMs for Lithuania, including Anna Smarr, AMCOM SAMD for the High Mobility Artillery Rocket System; Lacie Parham, SAMD and Omar Siaje JPO JLTV office for the Joint Light Tactical Vehicle; and Melissa Black, AMCOM SAMD for the UH-60M Black Hawk.
“She has a keen sense of the operational and strategic impacts related to her job,” Sullivan said. “She puts the country first by ensuring schedules and milestones are met and that Lithuania receives the capabilities requested on time and within cost projections. Her knowledge and experience across the Army’s security assistance enterprise is evident in all she does.”