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USS Vandegrift selects Sailor of the Year.

CS1(SW/AW) Elvin Manzanarez has re-written history books aboard USS Vandegrift (FFG 48), as he was selected for the Sailor of the Year award.

CS1 Manzanarez is the first Culinary Specialist serving aboard USS Vandegrift to be selected as Sailor of the Year.

"I am extremely honored to have been chosen as Vandegrift's Sailor of the Year, and I am very humbled to be the first Culinary Specialist to receive this huge honor and represent all of my junior guys," CS1 Manzanarez said.

"I have had the opportunity to work with some extraordinary Sailors in my career, and Petty Officer Manzanarez stands on top," said Cmdr. Joseph Darlak, Vandergrift's Commanding Officer. "He is a superb leader, both in the Supply Department and throughout the ship."

Having only been aboard for a year and a half, Cmdr. Darlak said that CS1 Manzanarez has made a huge impact on the command, and his leadership can be seen in his division and throughout the ship. Through his guidance and leadership, the Supply Department maintained zero liberty incidents during 10 port visits. His divisional training resulted in 100 percent of his advancement eligible Sailors being selected for advancement. He also fostered an atmosphere of high motivation and success, which caused four undesignated Seaman to strike for the CS rate.

CS1 Manzanarez also rejuvenated the Enlisted Surface Warfare Specialist (ESWS) program, and helped train 46 Sailors to earn their Surface Warfare pin qualification. Also, as a Damage Control Training Team (DCTT) member, he meticulously trained junior personnel in fire investigation, space desmoking, and boundary setting. He was singled out by inspectors for his exceptional training skills. As the Departmental 3M Assistant, he scheduled and trained Sailors to the completion of 450 spot checks and 584 equipment validations. Also as the Departmental Career Counselor, he provided career guidance to 13 Sailors with Career Development Boards, Perform to Service (PTS) submission, and helped negotiate their orders. His positive Navy outlook encouraged 100 percent of eligible sailors to re-enlist. As the "United Through Reading" coordinator, he spent more than 620 hours helping Vandegrift and HSL-37 Sailors stay in contact with their loved ones during Deployment 2012.

"My biggest 'thank you' goes to my division and departmental Sailors, because I am nothing without them," CS1 Manzanarez emphasized. "They have taught me so much, and they are the ones who got me here."

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By CSC(SW) Anthony Pone

Food Service Division LCPO, USS Vandegrift (FFG 48)
COPYRIGHT 2012 U.S. Department of the Navy, Supply Systems Command
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Title Annotation:Culinary Specialist is the First!
Author:Pone, Anthony
Publication:Navy Supply Corps Newsletter
Date:Nov 1, 2012
Words:409
Previous Article:Combat Logistics Force load management program.
Next Article:Training at the Culinary Institute of Virginia.

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