August 14, 2014 --
Two Naval Branch Health Clinic Albany sailors made a clean sweep of Naval Hospital Jacksonville, Florida’s, third quarter boards winning the Sailor of the Quarter and Blue Jacket of the Quarter, recently.
NBHC Albany’ s Petty Officer 2nd Class Brett Turano, readiness coordinator, won the Sailor of the Quarter while Hospitalman Rodney Frederick, radiation health technician, took home the Blue Jacket of the Quarter title.
Turano has won numerous boards at both the NBHC Albany and the directorate level, but this was his second time competing for NH Jacksonville’s SOQ board.
The recent recipient said he competed against nearly 650 E-5s for the prestigious title and has also been selected to attend a 13-month Submarine Independent Duty Corpsman School in Groton, Connecticut, in September.
“It is cool and a good going away gift,” Turano said. “I wish I could be here a little longer and compete for Sailor of the Year.
“It’s one of those things where you are finally recognized for everything you do,” he said. “People can pat you on the back all day long, but this lets you know you are really doing something.”
Turano compared his two attempts at gaining the SOQ title.
“My first time up for the board, I was a newer petty officer second class and did not have a lot of board experience,” he said. “Maybe I was over anxious and I was probably more talking about me.
“Now that I have been a petty officer second class for as long as I have, it’s really about your guys,” he noted. “I would not have made the Sailor of the Quarter if it were not for the guys who work for me or my leadership.”
According to Turano, he has honed his leadership skills and learned to employ and empower his Sailors.
“Once you reach E-5, you become a manager and you want to empower your junior Sailors to do that job and to take on those responsibilities as a leader,” he said.
Turano continued, “Being in the military is much bigger than you. Yes, I come to work to get things done, but really I am here to take care of my guys, train them and make them better corpsmen, Sailors and people. Some people call it delegating, but to me I train them to do the job just as well, if not better than I do.”
He said that NBHC Albany is such a small clinic that he has worked in every department including administration, sick call, pharmacy, primary care and the laboratory.
Being able to work in a variety of sections has made him a well-rounded Sailor, he noted.
The new SOQ title holder not only encouraged his Sailors go to school and to volunteer in the community, but demonstrated his leadership by obtaining his Associate of Science in Health care Management degree from Coastline Community College in Fountain, California, and earned more than 400 hours of volunteering.
“Volunteering is a way of giving back to the community and it makes you appreciate what you have because not everyone has what we have,” he said. “When you are out there teaching children and coaching sports teams, that gives you another aspect of leadership skills.”
Although NBHC Albany is considered a shore command, a non-operational command, there are many opportunities for young Sailors to set themselves up for success both personally and professionally, Turano noted.
“Don’t look at it like I’m in Albany, Georgia, and I am away from home,” he said. “Look at it like you have a great opportunity to learn your job as a corpsman, attend college, coach sports and give back to the community by volunteering.”
One of the many Sailors Turano has made a positive impact on is Frederick, who was the recent recipient of the Blue Jacket of the Quarter title.
Frederick admitted this was his first time participating on a board and considered it an honor to have been selected to represent NBHC Albany.
“It was interesting and I was not expecting that kind of results out of my first time around,” he said. “I am happy to win it, not for myself, but for everyone here who has helped me.”
Winning the board was his way of giving back to Turano and other NBHC Albany Sailors.
Before leaving for Jacksonville, Florida, several mock boards were conducted, which proved to be very valuable, enabling him to win the board, Frederick said.
“I was drilled on how the board process works including how to enter the room and report,” he said.
Frederick said the staff helped him study for possible questions about Navy uniform regulations, history and current events. He credits his leadership, especially Turano, for helping him win the board.
“Turano gave me advice on what to study and what not to study and we actually helped each other prepare our uniforms,” he said.
Frederick noted Turano not only helped him earn his new title, but also has trained him in the clinic’s sick call and medical readiness departments.
“Turano has given me good advice since I arrived here in Albany,” he said. “He encouraged me to go to school and to better myself no matter whether I stay in the Navy or not.”
Frederick has taken Turano’s advice and is currently enrolled in Darton State College seeking an Associate of Science in Health Science degree.
Lt. Cmdr. Mike Bristol, officer-in-charge, NBHC Albany, spoke highly of his Sailors.
“Petty Officer Brett Turano is a superb, community-minded Sailor who develops his junior Sailors,” Bristol said. “His selection as the Naval Hospital Jacksonville’s Sailor of the Quarter was extremely well deserved and a fitting reward as he prepares to transfer. Petty Officer Turano’s eagerness and initiative significantly contributed to his SOQ selection and will help prepare him for his future assignment as a submarine independent duty corpsman.
“Hospitalman Rodney Frederick reported in November and quickly established himself as a vital team player leading to his recognition as Naval Hospital Jacksonville’s Blue Jacket of the Quarter,” he said. “His eagerness to learn, initiative, and work ethic are refreshing.
“As the sole radiation health technician, he meticulously managed his program scoring exceptionally well during external audits,” he said. “In addition, his superb performance on several collateral duties and his volunteer efforts were key factors in his selection. We look forward to more great things from this outstanding young Sailor.”