News: Career counselors recognized for exceptional retention standards
Story by Spc. Nathan Thome
FORT CARSON, Colo. – The 4th Infantry Division retained 3,792 soldiers in fiscal year 2012, becoming one of only two divisions in U.S. Forces Command to make its retention quota.
The accomplishment was celebrated Tuesday during the Commanding General’s Fiscal Year 2012 II Retention Awards at the Elkhorn Conference Center, where Staff Sgt. Christopher Drinkwater, battalion career counselor, 2nd Battalion, 5th Field Artillery Regiment, 214th Fires Brigade, was named the 4th Infantry Division Career Counselor of the Year and received an Army Commendation Medal for his efforts from Maj. Gen. Joseph Anderson, commanding general, 4th Infantry Division and Fort Carson.
Drinkwater became Career Counselor of the Year through competing in a retention board, in which he beat career counselors from units throughout Fort Carson.
Other Fort Carson career counselors also received recognition for their hard work and dedication in achieving the 4th Infantry Division retention mission. Each brigade’s career counselor and command team received a Retention Excellence Iron Horse Award.
“What we did here today was recognize soldiers and command teams that had an impact on the retention program, and their efforts in retention,” said Sgt. Maj. Michael Harris, 4th Infantry Division and Fort Carson command career counselor, 4th Infantry Division.
Getting this award and being recognized for his hard work is an honor, said Drinkwater.
“I bring a skill set that retains America’s sons and daughters, because my job is to keep soldiers in the Army,” Drinkwater added.
The unit career counselors will continue to retain quality soldiers and exceed their mission for fiscal year 2013, Harris said.
“Retention is a privilege, not a right,” said Harris. “Not everyone can re-enlist, but I think once they do re-enlist, they are part of a team and it does nothing but make their unit better.”