7th Army NCOA cadre sets example at the 7th Army JMTC Best Warrior Competition

Story by Sgt. Christina Dion

7th Army NCOA cadre sets example at the 7th Army JMTC Best Warrior Competition
McColl, S.C., native Staff Sgt. William Chavis, assigned to the 7th Army Noncommissioned Officer Academy, and Greenville, S.C., native Spc. Jacob Baker, also with the 7th Army NCOA, discuss their next action during the stress-fire event of the 7th Army Joint Multinational Training Command Best Warrior Competition Aug. 12 at Grafenwoehr Training Area. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Christina M. Dion/Released)

GRAFENWOEHR, Germany – ‘Lead the way’ is the motto of all noncommissioned officers as they are looked upon to train and mentor young Soldiers. For one staff sergeant, the motto is more than just a phrase. As a competitor in the 2014 7th Army Joint Multinational Training Command Best Warrior competition, William Chavis takes on each task with the same professional attitude with which he does his job as a senior small group leader at the 7th Army NCO Officer Academy.

“He puts everything he has into showing the junior leaders that enter our gates what right looks like. He is truly the epitome of the ‘Profession of Arms,’” said Command Sgt. Maj. Wardell Jefferson, commandant of the 7th Army NCO Academy. “Staff Sergeant Chavis was selected to represent the 7th Army NCO Academy based on the commitment to excellence that he shows day in and day out.”
That commitment was evident in the McColl, South Carolina, native’s actions during the team portions of the competition held Aug. 12 to Aug. 14 at Grafenwoehr Training Area.

Although an individually-scored competition, one of the characteristics graders looked at was how Soldiers worked in a team environment. Chavis took his place with his teammates, 1st Lt. Mitchell Messick, a Fredericksburg, Virginia, native assigned to the 4th Infantry Regiment and Spc. Jacob Baker, a Greenville, South Carolina, native assigned to the 7th Army NCO Academy. Chavis’ expert leadership abilities combined with Messick as the team leader provided the right balance for the team to navigate the timed course.

In previous assignments as a platoon sergeant, Chavis said he learned how to mentor both his junior enlisted Soldiers and junior commissioned officers. “We have a platoon leader, but most are new to the Army. A good platoon sergeant will help guide them,” said Chavis, a combat medic who has earned the Combat Medical Badge and also wears the Ranger tab.

The leadership philosophy Chavis has is not surprising to Jefferson. “He is what you call a master trainer and this is easily identified if you ever walk into one of his classrooms,” the commandant said.

Despite a short break as an instructor, he still took his leadership skills to heart and guided both Messick and Baker through the obstacle course. He led by example in a very visible way. On most obstacles which required climbing, Chavis was the one making the first move. He paved the way for his teammates to follow so they could accomplish the task at hand.

Although he made it look easy while wearing full body armor and personal protective equipment, the Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom veteran said that some of the obstacles were more difficult than expected.

During another team event, Baker and Chavis both used their medical training to treat casualties and move wounded through mock hostile environments. Chavis took the lead and ensured his team was cohesive and always communicating the next move.

For Chavis, his next career moves involve becoming an honorary member of the Sergeant Morales Club, winning the U.S. Army European Best Warrior competition, and becoming the 7th Army NCO Academy Instructor of the Year. In the long term, he said he wants to become a chief instructor at the 7th Army NCO Academy as well as complete his bachelor’s degree in Human Resources Management.

Staying busy with his career isn’t the only focus Chavis has, said Jefferson. “Staff Sergeant Chavis also finds the time to spend quality time with his family as well as seek self-development. He just embodies the total Soldier concept and that’s what makes him a noncommissioned officer who will definitely achieve greatness throughout his career,” Jefferson said.

Apart from working and spending time with his wife and three children, Chavis also volunteers at his daughter’s school and the American Red Cross.

According to Jefferson, all of these things make Chavis the total Soldier that he is. “There have been many Soldiers that have told me that they wish ‘there were NCOs like Staff Sergeant Chavis in their units’. Hearing Soldiers say things like that about my cadre makes me feel confident that we are having a positive impact on these junior Soldiers,” said Jefferson.

Read more: http://www.dvidshub.net/news/139270/7th-army-ncoa-cadre-sets-example-7th-army-jmtc-best-warrior-competition#.U_D8E7ySwsI#ixzz3Ag4aEbsc

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Read more:http://www.dvidshub.net/news/139270/7th-army-ncoa-cadre-sets-example-7th-army-jmtc-best-warrior-competition#.U_EBK7ySwsI#ixzz3Ag9xFnM3

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