Contact: Denise Emsley
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By Sila Manahane, Naval Facilities Engineering Command Hawaii
PEARL HARBOR (NNS) - Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC) Pacific announced NAVFAC Hawaii's Utilitiesman 1st Class (SCW) Romulado Sosa as Sailor of the Year (SOY) 2012 Jan. 7.
"Petty Officer Sosa was selected from an extremely strong group of Petty Officers throughout the NAVFAC Pacific Area of Responsibility," said NAVFAC Pacific Commander Rear Adm. Scott A. Weikert. "His contribution to the Navy's mission in Hawaii is remarkable and the positive impact he had on his Sailors made his nomination package especially noteworthy. UT1 Sosa is a deck plate leader, and I am optimistic that he will be very competitive as he strives for recognition as NAVFAC,s Sailor of the Year."
Sosa was born in Mexico City, Mexico, and grew up in Southern California. He graduated Garden Grove High School in 1997 and enlisted in the Navy in 1998, attending Basic Training at Recruit Training Command, Great Lakes, Ill. In 1991, Sosa graduated Utilitesman's "A" School in Wichita Falls, Texas, and reported for duty at Naval Support Activity Naples, Italy.
He was chosen from top NAVFAC Pacific Sailors stationed at NAVFAC Hawaii, NAVFAC Marianas and NAVFAC Far East. Each of these organizations nominated outstanding individuals and competition was extremely close. However, Sosa demonstrated the greatest impact on his unit's overall effectiveness.
"I was shocked at first when I found out about my Sailor of the Year selection and proud at the same time," Sosa said. "I am very honored, mostly because I believe it is a reflection of the leadership and the standards I set for my troops."
The Utilitiesman reflected on his early days as an aspiring Seabee and recalls a principle that was instilled in him which continues to serve as a guide to his leadership practices, "Don't tell people to do something that you yourself are not willing to do or have not done."
Although mentoring is a great portion of Sosa's leadership responsibilities, he is humble and always willing to help others understand what is expected of them not only as a Navy Sailor but also as a Navy Seabee.
"I do not see myself as a mentor," said Sosa. "A lot of what I do is because I like doing it and whatever my job may be I do it to the best of my ability."
Sosa's engagement and active participation in his Navy and local community events made a significant impact some of which included fundraising efforts to offset costs for junior Seabees to attend the Seabee Ball, leading a group of Sailors to provide teak deck maintenance on the historic USS Missouri, and coaching a Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam Youth Sports girls volleyball girls team.
Sosa will go on to compete as a finalist and representative for the entire NAVFAC organization. The name of the NAVFAC winner is scheduled for release in February.
The Sailor of the Year program was founded by Adm. Elmo Zumwalt in 1972 to recognize outstanding Atlantic and Pacific Sailors at sea. The following year, the Shore Sailor of the Year program was introduced.