ROCK ISLAND ARSENAL, Ill. -- An Army Sustainment Command officer is a recipient of this year's LATINA Style Meritorious Service Award in a ceremony in Washington, D.C., for contributions to her nation and community.

Maj. Carmen Rosado, the 403rd/404th Regional Support Team chief of the Army Sustainment Command, was one of eight active-duty service members and the only active-duty Army representative to receive the 2012 LATINA Style Meritorious Service Award at the ninth National LATINA Symposium, Sept. 6.

The highlight of this year's LATINA Symposium was the Distinguished Military Service Awards Luncheon honoring Latinas serving in the Armed Forces.

The purpose of the LATINA Style 2012 Meritorious Service Award is to recognize military and Department of Defense civilian personnel who have enhanced the role of Latinas in their organizations in the areas of equal opportunity, civil rights programs, and public service to local communities.

Since the creation of the LATINA Style Symposium in 2004, eight Army service members have received this award.

Rosado learned about her acceptance for this award on Aug. 29 via the Army Knowledge Online (AKO) internet service.

"I was … surprised," Rosado said.

Rosado said it was an honor to receive recognition for the things she has done in the Hispanic community.

"This acknowledgment has been very inspiring," Rosado said about her satisfaction, explaining how her hard work and commitment have been recognized.

Asked about what the award meant to her, Rosado said: "A lot. It means a lot of things."

She added that the award would mean nothing and couldn't have been possible without the support of family, friends, and those around her who pushed her when she needed it.

Rosado said she has "focused on performing her job well," to get what she wanted throughout her entire life.

Rosado said she becomes upset when she sees people who have plenty of opportunities in life and do not take advantage of them, adding that she wished she had had more opportunities when she was younger.

"I wanted to be all I could be," Rosado said, when discussing her wish to succeed as a person, to influence others, and to do what is right.

Throughout her career and up to her current command position, Rosado said that she has never met a challenge that could distract her from her goals or cause her to lose focus; instead, she thrives on challenges.

And, Rosado said, she does not want things to come easily: "Easy to come, easy to go. I have worked hard to get what I want."

"I am so proud of who I am; so happy that my family raised me with values" that mirror the Army's. The values Rosado mentioned are: Loyalty, Integrity, Honor, Respect, Personal Courage, Duty, and Selfless Service.

"There is no way you can face challenges by yourself," Rosado said.

From 2006 to 2008 Rosado was assigned as the planning officer for Support Operations in 35th Combat Sustainment Support Battalion (CSSB), Sagami Depot, Japan. While assigned to 35th CSSB, Rosado deployed as the officer-in-charge to the National Training Center (NTC), Fort Irwin, Calif., in order to support the 2nd Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division for their NTC rotations from 2007 to 2011.

This was the first time the 35th CSSB deployed to the desert-based center simulating Southwest Asia.

While serving in these positions, Rosado cultivated a community for other Hispanics in Japan, civilian and military, providing them a space to explore their roots. As the Spanish community leader, she translated papers, found jobs for Hispanics living in Japan, and provided Hispanic cultural information to the Japanese.

Rosado, who has lived in the Quad Cities for about a year, helped coach children's soccer games during the summer.

Rosado's goal for the Hispanic community is to help her native land, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico. She said she wants to help the children find better opportunities for their future, as well as educate the middle class to "learn how to learn" and cultivate the values of their ancestors.

"Someday in the near future, our community will be recognized for the job it is doing," she said.

For now, Rosado said, the Hispanic community has the skills, but is unable to develop them. The community needs to work hard to achieve what it wants and to improve education for career opportunities.

Rosado entered the Army on April 8, 1998. She took the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery test after encouragement from a close friend. Rosado received the highest score and that was when she first desired to help people achieve success.

She initially served as an enlisted Solder for nearly five years as a 92A -- logistical specialist.
While completing a tour in Kosovo in 1999, Rosado said she realized that she wanted to be a leader.

Rosado graduated from the Primary Leadership Development Course in 2001 at Fort Drum, N.Y. She started her commissioned career in 2002 as a second lieutenant in the Ordnance Corps through the Officer Candidate School program at Fort Benning, Ga.

During Rosado's 2003 tour in Iraq, then Col. Curtis Anderson, commander of the 501st Forward Support Battalion in Operation Iraqi Freedom became her mentor and impacted her view on challenges.

Rosado said the job he gave her in the account office for supplies was not one she wanted; she already had experience in the Supply Support Activity. Rosado said she preferred to do something that she had not done before in order to gain new experiences.

Rosado said Anderson, however, challenged her to make the best of every situation and to do the best job no matter what happened. Rosado said she did much better than she anticipated because of Anderson's inspiration.

In 2006 Rosado became a 90A -- logistics officer after completing the Combined Logistic Officer Advanced Course.

Rosado was promoted to the rank of major on Oct. 1, 2011, a few months after arriving at ASC.