31st AMM October, 2003

AMM2003_HolidayInnWelcomeAMM2003GettysburgBannerUnited States Army Warrant Officers Association

Annual Meeting of the Members 2003

The 31st USAWOA Annual Meeting of the Members was held from October 19-23, 2003 at the Holiday Inn – Battlefield, Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.


(Pictured left is the Holiday Inn Welcome sign & pictured right is the Welcome Banner of the host Chapters of the Northeast Region.)

Annual Meeting Highlights

(See November & December 2003 NEWSLINERs for expanded coverage and more pictures)

On Sunday evening, October 19th, the Annual Meeting kicked off with a President’s Reception which allowed the participants to get acquainted or reacquainted.

On Monday, October 20th, President Meeks opened the business session. Various National Officials presented their Annual Reports. During the afternoon session a Professional Development briefing was presented by CW5 Jerry Dillard, the second Warrant Officer Advisor to the Chief of Staff of the Army.

AMM2003_CW5WinnSWOCAMM2003_KoreanWarWreathOn Tuesday, October 21st, the business session reconvened. CW5 Jerry Dillard, newly appointed Warrant Officer Advisor to the Chief of Staff, Army, made a presentation on the the Army’s goals and his role as Advisor to the CSA. At noon many participants went to the Gettysburg National Cemetery for a 50th Anniversary of the Korean War Wreath Laying at the grave site of two Korean War veterans.  In the afternoon,CW5 Jim Wynne, Chief Warrant Officer of the Ordnance Corps & member of the Army’s Senior Warrant Officer Council, made a presentation on the Army Training and Leader Development Panel – Warrant Officers report, staffing and implementation.  Also participants were broken down into five Focus Groups to deliberate on 1) Combat Device for Aviation Badges, 2) Rising Eagle Warrant Officer Insignia, 3) Membership Satisfaction Survey, 4) USAWOA “Rising Eagle” Award,& 5) Degree Completion – Post Graduate Studies for Warrant Officers.  (pictured at left is CW5 Wynne – pictured at right are wreath laying participants)

On Wednesday, October 22nd, the business session reconvened. The Focus Groups continued their deliberations and later in the day presented the recommendations for voting on the floor. See Summary of the Focus Group topics, deliberations, recommendations & floor vote results.


(pictured above are the some 85 members participating in the 2003 AMM)

AMM2003_Gettysburg-Cannon-1AMM2003_Gettysburg-10thMassOn Thursday, October 23rd, the U.S. Army War College hosted a outstanding “Staff Ride” and tour of the Gettysburg National Battlefield. After lunch, CW5 (Ret) Ray Bell, our Executive Director who was also President of The Military Coalition, presented a briefing on “USAWOA and the TMC.” He explained the legislative value of the TMC where each participating organization has one vote regardless of the size of the membership. The Military Coalition is a  consortium of 31 military and veteran associations representing 5 million active, Guard, Reserve, and Retired members of the uniformed services plus their family members and survivors. Thus, the TMC is listened to by the Congress and their testimony is frequently is sought. Colonel Steve Strobridge, Co-Chair of the TMC & Director of Government Affairs of the Military Officers Association of America (MOAA formerly TROA), presented a briefing on the legislative successes by the TMC in the past, a score board on this year’s legislative goals and the legislative goals for2004.

In the evening the Annual Awards Banquet & Ball was held. After the Colors were presented and posted the moderator stepped up to the podium and announced “Ladies and gentlemen – the President of the United states.” On this cue, the official Gettysburg “Abe Lincoln”, tall hat in hand, entered the room and strode to the podium. Since this was not on the program, few in the audience including all at the head table, had looks of astonishment on their faces. “President Lincoln” talked about his respect for the military and his trip to Gettysburg to make the Gettysburg Address. “Abe” received a standing ovation at the close of his presentation.

AMM2003_Stroup-Meeks_CoinExchangeThe keynote address was presented after dinner by Lt. Gen. (Ret) Theodore Stroup, Vice President, Education, of the Association of the United States Army and as Executive Director of the Institute of Land Warfare. Prior to his retirement from active service, he served as the Army’s Deputy Chief of Staff for Personnel (DCSPER now Army G-1). General Stroup, in a talk entitled “A Christmas Present in Korea” and where as a Second Lieutenant, after the Korean War, he was mentored by a Chief Warrant Officer 4. This was a time in the Army’s history where the uniforms were still olive drab plus shoes and boots were still brown. He went on to talk about the changes undergone by the  Army and the Warrant Officer Corps over the years including those he participate while the Army’s Deputy Chief of Staff for Personnel.  He encouraged us all to participate in the change process as the Army transitions to the future force. General Stroup, a true friend of the Warrant Officer Corps, received a standing ovation at the end of his address. (pictured left Lt. Gen. Stroup and President Meeks exchange coins)

AMM2003_DonStivers-wife_Hess-BellA copy of the follow-on limited edition USAWOA print “Let Go!” was unveiled. The artist Don Stivers and his wife were introduced.  Mr. Stivers is a noted military artist and the also the painter of “The Quiet Professional”, the first limited edition print commissioned by USAWOA. Later in the evening Mr. Frank Pollock, Chief Executive Officer of Pentagon Federal Credit Union (PFCU), was presented with a copy of “Let Go!” in recognition of their many years of gracious support of USAWOA and it’s activities. Their support included, but was not limited to the USAWOA/PFCU affinity VISA Card, sponsoring refreshments and door prizes at various activities, hosting of the USAWOA Online website since 1996 and more recently the USAWOA Scholarship and Warrant Officer Heritage Foundations’ websites, and much more. Presentation of the “Let Go!” print was made by USAWOA President Frank Meeks, USAWOA Scholarship Foundation President Don Hess, and Warrant Officer Heritage Foundation President & USAWOA Webmaster Dave Welsh on behalf of the three organizations.  (pictured right Don Stivers and wife visit with Don Hess and Ray Bell)

Several drawings were held during the course of the evening. The Pentagon Federal Credit Door Prize of a $100 travelers check was won by Marlena Marshall. Some nineteen door prizes were awarded by Chapters of the Northeast Region and the final drawing for the Scholarship Fund Raiser was conducted. The winners were:

$1,000 – CW4 Noel Smith, European Region President

$   500 – CW5 Rhea Pruett, Command Chief Warrant Officer, Michigan Army National Guard

$   250 – CW2 (Ret) Harry Shelvock, Chester, Washington (who graciously donated his prize back to the Scholarship Fund)

The main event of the evening was announcement and presentation of the USAWOA Awards for 2003. Recognized were:

Flag streamers were presented to the Chapters shown for continuous USAWOA presence in their area:

5 Years

South of Alps
Painted Rock
New England

10 Years

Southern California (SoCal)
Arlington Hall Minuteman

 15 Years

Forever Forward

20 Years

Career Center Heidelberg Wuerzburg Oberpfalz-Franken

30 Years

Hanau Silver
Nord Bayern Silver
Rhein Neckar Silver
Lord Fairfax Silver

Best Chapter Website – Nord Bayern Silver Chapter, Bamberg, GE, Keith Sublett, Webmaster (2nd year in a row)

Best Professional Development Program – Arizona Silver Chapter, Sierra Vista, AZ (2nd year in a row)

Community Affairs Award for Donations – Rhein Neckar Silver Chapter, Manheim, GE

Community Affairs Award for Service – Greater Atlanta Chapter, Atlanta, GA

Community Affairs Award for Sustaining Programs – Swampfox Chapter, Fort Jackson/Columbia, SC

Best Retention Award – George G. Meade Chapter,  Fort Meade/Odenton, MD

Best Recruiting Award – Cornhusker Chapter, Omaha, NE

Highest Recruiting Award – Fort Bragg Silver Chapter, Fayetteville, NC

Best Region for Recruiting & Retention Award – European and Western Regions (tied)

USAWOA Certificates of Appreciation were presented to AMM 2003 committee and the Holiday Inn staff.

Individual Awards were presented to the following members for the achievements shown:

Special Achievement Plaque to CW4 (Ret) Bob Scott for Incorporation of the USAWOA Scholarship Foundation and Chair of the follow-on USAWOA Stivers limited edition print “Let Go!”

Special Achievement Plaque to CW5 (Ret) Dave Welsh for Incorporation of the Warrant Officer Heritage Foundation and services as USAWOA Online Webmaster.

Don Hess President’s Award to CW5 (Ret) Dan Logan for outstanding service to the Corps while serving as the first Warrant Officer Advisor to the Chief of  Staff, Army.

Don Hess President’s Award to CW5 (Ret) John Sparkman for outstanding service to the Corps while serving as Chair of the Senior Warrant Officer Council and as Webmaster of the Warrant Officer Leader Development Network internet site.

The Awards Ceremony concluded with announcement of the USAWOA Albert M. Holcombe Memorial Warrant Officer of the Year and the Virginia Holcombe Memorial Spouse of the Year. Recognized with these prestigious awards for 2003 were:

AMM2003_WOyr2003_MattWojdakAMM2003_SpouseYr2003_DianeRichardsonThe Albert M. Holcombe Memorial Warrant Officer of the Year to CW5 Matthew Wojdak, Office of the Army G-1 and member of the Lord Fairfax Silver Chapter, Alexandria, VA (pictured on the left).

The Virginia Holcombe Memorial Warrant Officer Spouse of the Year to Diane Richardson, spouse of CW4 Henry Richardson, Fort Bragg Silver Chapter, Fayetteville, NC (pictured on the right).

Picture of CW5 Wojdak is official Army photograph & picture of Diane Richardson by Ray Bell

Unless otherwise noted, all pictures by CW5 (Ret) Dave Welsh, USAWOA Webmaster

USAWOA Online 3/17/2013