By Master Sgt. Christina Steiner, U.S. Army Human Resources Command, Public Affairs OfficeFebruary 9, 2011
FORT KNOX, Ky. - A Department of Army civilian was named the Army G-1's Civilian of the Quarter during an "All Hands" teleconference at the Pentagon Jan. 25.
Vickie Freed managed to dramatically decrease the backlog of retired Soldiers' personnel actions from more than six months per action to an average of less than 60 days per action.
The Army's civilian employees work hard, and the Civilian of the Quarter demonstrates that hard work, said Lt. Gen. Thomas P. Bostick, the deputy chief of staff for Personnel (Army G-1).
Freed is the overall supervisor of human resources in the Personnel Actions Branch (PAB) of the Force Sustainment Division (FSD) under the Enlisted Personnel Management Directorate (EPMD) at U.S. Army Human Resources Command. She manages personnel actions for FSD Soldiers and their families. She won in the General Schedule (GS)-13 and below category for the Army G-1. Just prior to that, she had won the HRC Civilian of the Quarter Award. Seven civilians across the Army competed in that category. Freed accepted her award from Maj. Gen. Gina S. Farrisee, HRC commanding general. (Bostick was part of a video teleconference and made his comments from the Pentagon.)
"Initially, when I found out I'd won, I was totally surprised and thought, 'Wow, it's great to be recognized,' " Freed said, "but really, my staff deserves the award because if not for them I wouldn't have gotten this award.
"It's amazing when you think about it," Freed said. "I almost have a brand-new crew, most of whom didn't get [to Fort Knox] until August  or later. Only two came from St. Louis with institutional knowledge."
St. Louis was one of three locations that housed the Army's Human Resources employees and services. Alexandria, Va., and Indianapolis were the others.
"We process various personnel actions for reserve-component Soldiers of the IRR [Individual Ready Reserve], and IMA [Individual Mobilization Augmentation program], and some AGRs [Active Guard and Reserve] actions," Freed said. "We process Good Conduct Medals, Enlisted Records Briefs (ERB) for AGR Soldiers, who are located at one of four Regional Personnel Support Centers (RPSC) in the country.
"Above-the-line units and organizations are major commands, such as Forces Command (FORSCOM), the Army Reserve Readiness Training Center (ARRTC), the U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command (TRADOC) and all combatant commands, such as Central Command, (CENTCOM). They do not have RPSCs, so we process their personnel actions as well," Freed said. Below-the-line organizations are those that report to the U.S. Army Reserve Command (USARC).
"The main difference between these two types of organizations is that below-the-line units have four RPSCs that process their personnel actions," Freed said. "The above-the-line organizations do not have RPSCs, so we must do their actions."
Freed, a Department of Army civilian, supervises a staff of 12 DACs, but there are some vacant positions for hire. Some personnel topics she and her staff work include congressional, VIP and Senate inquiries; student loans; Army Reserve awards and other actions, VA home loans, retirement points, employment verification and physical health assessments.
"Ms. Freed came to the organization from St. Louis; we hired her through a phone interview," said the FSD deputy, Ken Shipp, and Freed's supervisor. "She immediately showed her ability to lead and train during a stressful time because she has a section of 25 personnel authorized and only three of them made the move to Fort Knox," according to Shipp. "She made the move and got that team moving to knock down her backlog while using her extensive knowledge in training new personnel across the directorate.
"Many personnel in HRC do one thing many times and they do it well," he continued. "Ms. Freed does many things well. She is the type of employee who needs little to no supervision because she can take guidance, understand the intent and make mission happen. Lastly, she and the people she teaches, coaches and mentors in her branch all care about their work. That is what makes them successful beyond anything else."
In her spare time, Freed likes to volunteer for veterans groups, spend time with her dogs and grandchildren, her yard and pool. She was active in the Noncommissioned Officers Association (NCOA) in St. Louis and is hoping the NCOA chapter at Fort Knox becomes active.
"I really want kudos to go to my team," she said. "They are the ones who really help me shine."
PAB employees include George Wilson, Thomas Powers, Derrik Robert, Perry McCrae, John Taylor, Shatona Anty, Clinton Sheehy, Daniel Bonagofski, Linda Murray, Jessica Kunda, and Natalie Hall. Mark Cherry, formerly of the PAB team, was promoted to the Senior Leader Development Office at HRC.