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Russo receives top reserve award
Spc. Pablo Vizcaino, 444MPAD
Russo receives top reserve award

(Chief Warrant Officer 2 Thomas Russo (center) is presented the Reserve Component Transportation Corps Regimental Warrant Officer of the Year award for 2006 from Brig. Gen. James Chambers (right), Commanding General Chief of Transportation and the other is General (retired) William G.T. Tuttle Jr., the former commander of U.S. Army Materiel Command during a ceremony at Fort Eustis, Va. U.S. Army photo.)

Soldiers many times take for granted just how much effort it takes to get gear to link up with them at the right time around the world. Military personnel count on the equipment such as a HUMVEE or tank being there, not realizing the behind the scenes work it took to meet their expectations. But it is heartening to know the logistics warriors behind this hard work don’t go unnoticed for their efforts.

Chief Warrant Officer Thomas Russo, Mobility Officer for the New Jersey National Guard’s Joint Forces Headquarters-New Jersey (JFHQ-NJ) became the recipient of the reserve component Transportation Corps Regimental Warrant Officer of the Year award for 2006. The prestigious award was due to Thomas’s efforts as a major player in the movement of a division worth of equipment and personnel to Iraq and back in support of the Global War on Terrorism.

His accomplishments included direct movement control support to the New Jersey Army National Guard, Fort Dix, Fort Monmouth, and Picatinny Arsenal. Additional support was provided to Army Reserve units stationed in New Jersey, and the Defense Movement Coordinators in New York, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, Connecticut, and Rhode Island.

Russo also acted as the direct liaison with New Jersey Department of Transportation and New Jersey State Police to ensure that convoys where not interfered with, due to weapons mounted on vehicles, while traveling county and state roads.

The award he received in October of this year is national in scope. Eligible candidates come from all 54 states and territories must have a packet submitted for consideration. Potential candidates are judged not only on their military accomplishments, but are asked about their personal lives and service to their community.

Russo is no stranger to his community since he coaches a competitive soccer team in Hamilton Township, and serves a member of the Clifton Mill Townhouse Association.

Present at the award ceremony, which took place during the weeklong Transportation Corps Regimental Review in Fort Eustis, Va., was his wife, Hope Marie. She was able to share in this special occasion. “She was very proud,” Russo said.

Coincidently, he reminisced, that week was unusually special because it coincided with the yearly Transportation Ball, which he and his wife were able to attend. “My wife got to meet and greet people; it was our first official function. Dress blues and all, very fun,” he said.

So, does he see any more awards in the future? His plans are to put in for another award for 2007, with his chances of winning very high. “Especially with the 50th Brigade going out, there will be a lot of stuff going on,” he said.

As if to erase any doubts, Russo concluded, “I just got done moving 20 M1 tanks out to Sierra, California.”

While we don’t know what the future holds, it is assured that equipment will get where it needs to be, as Russo continues to keep the New Jersey National Guard moving.

Table of Contents
Volume 33 Number 5 Staff / Information
(c) 2008 NJ Department of Military and Veterans Affairs