DTRA Member Named OSD 2018 Junior NCO of the Year

Defense Threat Reduction Agency
Story by Jessica Lewis

Date: 10.30.2019
Posted: 10.30.2019 12:50
News ID: 349898
Department of Defense Senior and Junior Enlisted of the Year Award

FORT BELVOIR, Va. – U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Yulia Vest was named the 2018 Office of Secretary of Defense (OSD) Junior Noncommissioned Officer (NCO) of the Year during a ceremony held at the Pentagon Oct 24.

Deputy Secretary of Defense, David Norquist was on hand to present the award to Vest, who is currently assigned to the Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA) at Ft. Belvoir, Va.

Vest is a senior linguist supporting the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START), and serves as a treaty escort and Russian interpreter. In 2018 she escorted numerous Russian Federation diplomatic inspectors, and facilitated the certification program by leading more than 100 hours of classroom instruction. Vest’s efforts ensured that four new escort personnel were Treaty certified.

Vest also served as the lead interpreter during a POW/MIA US-Russian Joint Commission recovery mission were she provided 96 hours of language support. Her efforts on this mission enabled the exchange of information, and ultimately the recovery, of Vietnam War vet remains.

“Staff Sgt. Vest represents all of DTRA,” said DTRA Deputy Director Lt. Gen. Darsie Rogers. “She represents the talented service members and civilians we have across the Agency and the important work they do each day.”

The recipient of the annual OSD Junior NCO award is selected from enlisted service members, grades E-5 through E-6, assigned to OSD, the Office of the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Washington Headquarters Services, and all Defense Agencies and Field Activities.

“This award acknowledges the abilities and professionalism that Staff Sgt. Vest has brought to our Agency and Directorate every day since she arrived over two years ago.” said On-Site Inspection & Building Capacity Directorate Director, David Musgrave “We are exceptionally proud of Yulia as she celebrates this great accomplishment.”
DTRA enables the Department of Defense, the U.S. Government, and international partners to counter and deter Weapons of Mass Destruction and Improvised Threat Networks.