Story by Army Sgt. Bryan Ploughe
1st Battalion, 623rd Field Artillery Regiment
FORT KNOX, Ky. (6/19/12) — For the second consecutive year the Kentucky Army National Guard's 1st Battalion, 623rd Field Artillery Regiment has been awarded the Alexander Hamilton Award, which recognizes and highlights excellence in Army National Guard artillery units and marks the battalion as the best of the best.
"For our battalion to receive this award for two consecutive years is remarkable," said Sgt. 1st Class James Rogers, a Soldier with the battalion. "This is truly a reflection of the quality Soldiers that we have in this battalion and this great Commonwealth of Kentucky."
This year's award was presented to B Battery and last year's award went to the battalion's Battery A.
Even without the back-to-back awards, it still marks an outstanding achievement.
"This is a tremendous accomplishment for not only Bravo Battery… but also for the battalion," said Army Lt. Col. Timothy Fanter, commander of the battalion.
To be considered for the award, artillery units are reviewed on items such as physical readiness, command inspections, safety, Soldier care, weapons qualification and unit strength as well as other items.
In addition to exceeding the standards in order to win the Hamilton Award, the Soldiers of the unit did so while being called out for a variety of state missions to include flood response operations and support to local authorities at other large-scale events.
"[B Battery] is a solid unit and continues to perform in a professional manner," said Col. Brian Wertzler, commander of the 138th Fires Brigade. "I am grateful that they have been recognized for the prestigious Alexander Hamilton award, honoring their achievements and further complimenting their efforts."