SURFLANT Selects Sailor of Year

Story Number: NNS070402-18Release Date: 4/2/2007 4:24:00 PM
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By Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Ardelle L. Purcell, USS Nassau Public Affairs

USS NASSAU, At Sea (NNS) -- USS Nassau's (LHA-4) Sailor of Year (SOY) was announced as the Commander, Naval Surface Forces, U.S. Atlantic Fleet (SURFLANT), Sea SOY on March 19.

Cryptologic Technician (Maintenance) 1st Class (SW/AW/SS) Marcus J. Kohlmann, a nine-year Navy veteran, will now represent the Top Gator, Commander, Amphibious Group (COMPHIBGRU) 2 and SURFLANT at the Fleet Forces Command Sea and Shore SOY competition.

"I was honored just to have been selected as Nassau's Sailor of the Year, especially with all of the outstanding Sailors that also went up," said Kohlmann.

"It was one of the proudest moments of my naval Career. I know that this selection means that I have been surrounded by positive influences both up and down my chain of command allowing me to succeed. Something like this is never expected, but it is great to know that the job you're doing is both respected and appreciated," he said.

Kohlmann, the Ship's Signals Exploitation spaces leading petty officer and Joint Intelligence Center Systems maintenance supervisor, held challenging collateral duties as the assistant command fitness leader, First Class Association president, fitness enhancement program coordinator, and 3M work center supervisor. He says his selection as SOY has been fulfilling, yet he remains modest.

"I could not say why specifically I was selected as Sailor of the Year. You never work for something like this, but you just try to do your job to the best of your ability," said Kohlmann.

"There were a lot of extremely professional and talented Sailors who also went up, who I respect very much. To have been chosen from among them was definitely a humbling experience. I am very proud to represent the USS Nassau and COMPHIBGRU 2 and SURFLANT at the Sailor of the Year competition. It's a chance to reflect positively on the USS Nassau and all of its Sailors," added Kohlman.

With career goals to become a chief petty officer and ultimately get selected for limited duty officer and to someday take command of a Navy Information Operations Command, no task seems to be too hard for Kohlmann.

"The best way that I could describe my Navy career up to this point is challenging. I have tried to take the orders that would allow me to both learn and grow professionally. I am proud of what I have accomplished so far and I look forward to a challenging future," he said.

As a leader and mentor, Kohlmann lets junior Sailors know his key to success.

"The best advice I have ever received, and will continue to pass along is, 'Any job worth doing, is worth doing right.' It sounds simple, but that's why it works," said Kohlmann.

"This goes along with everything from the smallest task to the largest evolution. If you have the choice of doing things the easy way or doing things the right way; the right way should always prevail. I also realize that any situation you encounter in the Navy can be used as a learning experience, and that sometimes means that the bad situation is sometimes your best learning tool. Keep your mind open to change and effectively communicate with your chain of command."

Kohlmann will represent the Nassau, COMPHIBGRU 2 and SURFLANT at the Fleet Forces Command level, which is scheduled to take place during the third week in April.

The Sailors selected to be the overall Fleet Forces Command Sea and Shore SOY will attend a meritorious promotion ceremony hosted by the Chief of Naval Operations later this year.

Nassau is currently deployed to Commander, 6th Fleet area of responsibility in support of Exercise Phoenix Express 2007.

For more news from USS Nassau (LHA 4) visit

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