Service Persons and Officer of the Year are Honored
MYSTIC, Conn. - The Navy League Eastern Connecticut Council honored Sea and Shore Service Persons of the Year and Officer of the Year during an awards dinner March 17.
The honorees were:
- Sea Service Person of the Year: Chief Fire Control Technician Brian W. Paugh, assigned to USS Memphis (SSN 691)
- Shore Service Person of the Year: Machinist's Mate 1st Class Carter C. Smith, assigned to Naval Submarine Support Facility (NSSF) New London
- Officer of the Year: Cmdr. Dale Green, Naval Submarine Support Facility (NSSF) New London Commanding Officer
Smith volunteered countless hours within the Groton/New London area, including as a mentor to middle and high school students about the effects of alcohol and illegal drugs through Groton Adolescent Substance Abuse Prevention. He declared that he owed his success to his wife, Joanne.
"In all reality, this is her award because I would not be where I am today if she were not standing behind me," Smith said. "My wife has made it possible for me to volunteer the hours that I did. She and my daughter have sacrificed so I can give back to the community."
Paugh, whose community service included raising money for the Multiple Sclerosis Association and the Cystic Fibrosis and Kidney Foundations, could not attend the event because he was underway aboard Los Angeles-attack submarine USS Memphis (SSN 691). Command Master Chief Wesley Koshoffer of Submarine Development Squadron Twelve accepted Paugh's honors in his absence.
"I spent time with Chief Paugh before he left, and I've sailed with him in the past. He is an incredible sailor, but his most powerful attribute is probably that he is extremely humble," said Koshoffer.
Green, who is a deacon at his church, has led a team of nearly 300 volunteers for more than two-and-a-half years in a community service project called Service on the Sound, which provided painting and repairs for 55 homes for elderly and disadvantaged families.
"We will always have the poor and people who are less fortunate than me," Green said of his community work. "I think it is important to give as much time as possible to people who really need it."
The Sea and Shore Service Persons of the Year were selected from the 12 winners of the Service Person of the Month Program (SPOM). Sponsored by the Chamber of Commerce of Eastern Connecticut in cooperation with all active duty units of military organizations permanently based in this area, the SPOM provides community recognition of outstanding active duty enlisted personnel stationed in the New London/Groton area.
The Officer of the Year program recognizes the contributions made by local Officers to the communities where they are stationed and serves as an example and encouragement to fellow Officers.
Additional photos of the event can be found here.