By Mr. Robert P Johnson (Leonard Wood)August 6, 2010
Department of Army and Fort Leonard Wood officials honored the best Foreign Disclosure Officer during a ceremony in Hoge Hall, July 28.
Vicki Palmer, Maneuver Support Center of Excellence foreign disclosure officer, was selected by the Army to receive the Kenneth G. Raymer Memorial Award, which recognizes the Best FDO in the Army for 2009.
In addition to the Kenneth C. Raymer Memorial Award, Palmer received a DA Achievement Medal of Civilian Service, a framed personal note from Lt. Gen. Richard Zahner, Army deputy chief of staff, G2, and was presented command coins from Maj. Gen. David Quantock, MSCoE and Fort Leonard Wood commanding general and from MSCoE Command Sgt. Maj. Corbly Elsbury.
Presenting the award to Palmer, Patricia Stokes, Defense Intelligence Senior Leader, said the award marked a joyous day as it was only bestowed upon the very best and most outstanding foreign disclosure officers within the intelligence field.
"Foreign disclosure is somewhat of a cottage industry," Stokes said. "There's not a lot of training for the job and much of the rules and regulations have to be interpreted by the foreign disclosure officer for each particular instance ... and Vicki has done a superb job of doing just that."
"Foreign disclosure has never been more critical than it is now," Stokes said, referring to the balance between working with allies and foreign military forces for a common goal and the need to maintain operational security for our own forces.
"It's hard (foreign disclosure). There is no rule book," Stokes said. "But Vicki understands this and works this. If anyone understands it, she does. She's got it."
Stokes went on to say that one of the outstanding aspects of Palmer's nomination packet was the emphasis Palmer placed on mission needs.
"One thing really stood out in her nomination and that was her ability to balance needs with acceptable risks," Stokes said.
"We're very proud of her," Stokes said.
The Kenneth C. Raymer Memorial Award is a tribute to its namesake who was a Foreign Disclosure Officer and is credited with many of the policies and oversight of the program, Stokes said. Raymer worked for more than 30 years as an intelligence officer.
"I am pleased, flattered and humbled to be the recipient of this award," Palmer said. "I am one of the few old-timers that knew Ken Raymer. Ken was Missouri-born and always wanted to talk about "his Missouri" during our conversations. He was a great guy and taught me a lot about foreign disclosure."
Palmer went on to say that she has worked for the Army since 1972, but being the command's foreign disclosure officer has been the most challenging job she has ever held.
"When I arrive at work each morning, and I look up at our nation's flag, I'm reminded of why I'm here. I am part of the MSCoE team whose mission is to support our fighting men and women. I work to protect our Soldiers by enforcing Army regulatory guidance that precludes the release of information that may prove harmful. I protect our Soldiers by protecting words," Palmer said.
"I could not be successful in my job without your assistance and occasional kick in the rear," she said.