News: South Dakota National Guard announces Lieutenant of the Year
Story by 1st Lt. Chad Carlson
WATERTOWN, S.D. - The South Dakota National Guard is pleased to announce Capt. Nilofar Meyer, of Sioux Falls, as the 2014 recipient of the Lt. Col. John J. Steele award, naming her the SDNG’s Lieutenant of the Year.
The Lt. Col. John J. Steele award was established in 1968 to annually recognize the most outstanding lieutenant in the South Dakota National Guard. Selection is based on exceptional qualities of leadership, values and performance.
Meyer, who was recently promoted to captain, serves as the director of equal opportunity for the South Dakota Air National Guard’s 114th Fighter Wing in Sioux Falls, She was selected as the most exceptional lieutenant within the Wing and competed against lieutenants from each of the SDNG’s major commands.
“Capt. Meyer is a stellar example of a positive attitude and her drive and energy get things done,” said Col. Steven Warren, 114th Fighter Wing vice commander. “These traits, combined with her poise and integrity, make her a great leader and are going to take her far in her military career.”
Meyer has been a member of the South Dakota Air National Guard for 16 years. She spent 12 of those years as an enlisted member of the 114th Medical Group where she served as functional manager and noncommissioned officer in charge of medical technicians, human relations council member and liaison, and exercise evaluation team member.
In addition to her responsibilities in the Air National Guard, she also serves as a manager of clinical operations at the Good Samaritan Society. She is involved with a new program known as LivingWell@Home, which helps seniors stay in their own homes longer by using a proactive healthcare approach.
Meyer was born in Kabul, Afghanistan. From there, her family moved to Pakistan to escape the war with Russia, among other civil disruptions. When she was 11 years old her family moved to the U.S. She says that education has always been a goal of hers and she strives to be an example for her five siblings to follow.
“It’s an honor to receive an award amongst the best,” said Meyer. “Knowing I was competing against the best on the Army side – I felt really honored to represent the Wing.”
Other officers representing their major command for this year’s award competition were 1st Lt. Jason Kimura, 109th Regional Support Group; 1st Lt. Christopher Olsen, 196th Maneuver Enhancement Brigade; and 1st Lt. Daniel Williams, 196th Regiment (Regional Training Institute).