Story by 1st Lt. Amy Bonanno, ARSIC-South PAO
Kandahar Airfield – “For outstanding performance of duty while serving as Field Ordering Officer (FOO) Manager at Kandahar Air Field, attached to Afghan Region Security Integration Command – South (ARSIC-S), Combined Joint Task Force Phoenix,” the award states.
Storekeeper 1st Class Air warfare (AW) Marion Byrd, who originally hails from Vienna, Austria, (and received her United States citizenship in 2006), recently received the ‘Senior Sailor of the Quarter’ award, Second Quarter, Calendar Year 2008.
SK1 Byrd was solely responsible for the operational funds of four ARSIC-S Brigades and 24 Regional Police Activity Command (RPAC) Teams. After only six years in the U.S. Navy, SK1 (AW) Byrd has developed the skills to efficiently manage 67 Army/Navy teams and 11 Marine Corps teams, ensuring a steady funding stream and directly affecting all U.S. war fighters belonging to ARSIC-S and the Afghan National Police (ANP) and the Afghan National Army (ANA) mentored by those teams.
“It’s been a great pleasure to serve with SK1 Byrd. You’re looking at one of the Navy’s most admirable sailors, showing the war fighters of Afghanistan what the Navy is capable of, either in the water or out of it. She’s a powerhouse of energy and we’re really proud of her,” said Lt. Sorchae Washburn, the ARSIC-S Contracting Officer In-Charge, SK1 Byrd’s supervisor.
In addition to being the Senior Sailor of the Quarter, “SK1 Byrd flawlessly and efficiently stepped up to the plate and acted in an O3 capacity for one month while her supervisor was on leave,” added Cmdr. Michael Burke, Canadian Naval Officer and Chief of Staff for ARSIC-South.
During the ninety days she has been onboard, Byrd created, maintained and manipulated all documentation pertaining to and representing more than $2.4 million worth of Opfunds with no mistakes. Byrd was also publicly congratulated for clearing 212 Field Ordering Officer accounts with zero discrepancies, ensuring the continued availability of funds for her teams. As part of an ARSIC-S-wide FOO transition from one contracting office to another, Byrd managed the smooth transition of 52 FOO teams to their new contract liaison at Camp Phoenix, located in Kabul, Afghanistan, with transparent impacts on her teams. Byrd’s expertise and extreme attention to detail put the necessary resources at the fingertips of the ARSIC-S war fighters, keeping them in sustained combat operations and keeping them focused on their mission.
Byrd’s dedicated efforts and exceptional initiative resulted in her selection as Combined Joint Task Force Phoenix Senior Sailor of the Quarter.
At a Naval ceremony held on Camp Phoenix, Byrd was awarded a Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) coin, in addition to the ‘Senior Sailor of the Quarter’ award, by Adm. Gary Roughead personally.
“It’s truly an honor to be recognized for my efforts by my supervisors and the United States Navy,” said Byrd, “to work hard and be recognized for it makes me feel really good about supporting the mission here in Afghanistan.”