Post Classifieds

Selvester Wins!

By Sofia Esquivel
On February 10, 2011

  A military science instructor from the Army ROTC detachment at Norwich University has won the US Army Cadet Command's 1st Brigade Non Commissioned Officer of the Year (NCOY) competition for 2010, according to a high level source in the department.

  "Sergeant 1st Class Selvester competed at brigade level," Colonel Stephen Smith, professor of military science at Norwich University said, "(he) did very well." 

  According to Col. Smith, NCOY competitions are held throughout the Army each year and it is comprised of physical and mental challenges, which are used to "assess the skills of the soldier".

  The 1st Brigade NCOY competition tested the soldiers' abilities in a variety of areas, including night and day time land navigation, physical fitness assessments, marksmanship and overall knowledge, according to Sergeant Major Sherwood Gatts.

  "Each person found 14 points for land nav," Sgt. Maj. Gatts stated, "Sgt. 1st Class Selvester found 26."

  For Selvester, the competition was challenging. "It was extremely difficult," Selvester said, "I only had one direction and that was to win." 

  Sgt. 1st Class Selvester stated that training alongside the Ranger Challenge team, who came first in the Bold Leader Challenge competition last fall, paid off "huge dividends" for him during the NCOY.

            After winning the 1st Brigade NCOY, Selvester, who has been with the Norwich Army Detachment since August of last year, has indicated that he is currently training for his next competition, the United States Cadet Command NCOY.

  "I'm actually starting the physical train-up," he said, "it's a great way to get back in shape, get yourself honed and sharpen that blade again."

  According to Command Sergeant Major Charles Green, the ranking non-commissioned officer at 1St Brigade, the USACC NCOY competition will take place on March 14-17 at Fort Knox, Ky.

  Along with winning first place in the competition, Sgt. 1st Class Selvester competed for and received a nomination to be inducted into the prestigious Sergeant Audie Murphy Club (SAMC), according to Sgt. Maj. Gatts, who himself is a member.

  "He appeared before a board of sergeant majors," Gatts stated, "through process of elimination we had to choose the top three NCOs at 1st Brigade."

  Sgt. 1st Class Selvester was the first place nominee at the SAMC board, Gatts said.

  In order to be inducted into the club, Selvester, along with other nominees, will have to go through rigorous physical challenges and appear in front of two boards, which will test his leadership skills and qualities, as noted by Sgt. Maj. Gatts.

   Sgt. Maj. Gatts went on to explain that Sgt. Audie Murphy was the most decorated soldier in Army history, whose legendary leadership in and out of the military has served as the model for which members of the club live by today. 

  In order to be inducted into the SAMC the soldier does not compete against another individual during the board, according to Command Sgt. Maj. Green. 

  "You are competing against standards," Green said.

  For Sgt. 1st Class Selvester, going before the board is the most intimidating aspect of competing for induction into the SAMC. 

  "The board is going to be the hardest part," Selvester stated, "because it's subjective."

  The decision of the board, on whether or not he is inducted into the SAMC, is based on how his leadership skills are judged by that body, according to Sgt. 1st Class Selvester. 

  Command Sgt. Maj. Green, a member of the SAMC since 1996, describes what it means to be inducted into the SAMC.

  "It means accountability, it means responsibility," Green said, "It's understanding that when much is given, much is expected."

  Members of the SAMC are the most prestigious non commissioned officers in the Army; they are the "ambassadors" for the NCO Corps, according to Sgt. Maj. Green.

  Being part of the club also gives non-commissioned officers an edge when the time for promotions comes around.

  "If you have two guys that are completely even across the board," Gatts said, "being a SAMC member will certainly put you above your peer."

   SAMC inductees receive a certificate, along with a medallion, according to Command Sgt. Maj. Green.

   However, it is the challenge to compete and be inducted into the club through the soldiers' leadership skills and abilities that makes the SAMC members so respected throughout the Army.

  "It is designed to challenge you physically, mentally, emotionally," Command Sgt. Maj. Green stated, "it gives the décor of what an NCO is supposed to be about."

  Sgt. 1st Class Selvester will go in front of the final SAMC board, in conjunction with the USACC NCOY competition on March 14-17 at Fort Knox, KY.




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