Best Battery Awards: Knox Award reinstated and Hamilton Award created in 2002

Best Battery Awards: Knox Award reinstated and Hamilton Award created in 2002

After a 62-year hiatus, the Henry A. Knox Award for the Army’s Best Active Component (AC) Battery has been reinstated and the first annual Alexander Hamilton Award for the Army’s Best Army National Guard (ARNG) Battery has been created with the 2002 winners honored at the Senior Fire Support Conference on 3 October. During a banquet at the Officers’ Club, Fort Sill, Oklahoma, the Chief of Field Artillery Major General Michael D. Maples presented the Knox Award to First Sergeant (1SG) Franklin M. Jacobs, who accepted on behalf of B Battery, 1st Battalion, 319th Airborne Field Artillery Regiment (AFAR), 82d Airborne Division Artillery, Fort Bragg, North Carolina, and the Hamilton Award to Captain Kory L. Knight, who accepted on behalf of his former command, B Battery, 1St Battalion, 147th Field Artillery Brigade, ARNG, from Salem, South Dakota. (See the related articles in this edition: “The Knox Trophy and Medal: 1924-1940” by Lieutenant Colonel Allen W. Batschelet, “Alexander Hamilton–An American Statesman a nd Artilleryman,” “B/1-319 AFAR Wins 2002 Knox Best AC Battery Award,” and “B/1-147 FA Wins 2002 Hamilton Best ARNG Battery Award.”)

Awards’ Purpose, Criteria and Eligibility. The purpose of and criteria and eligibility for the annual Knox and Hamilton Awards are basically the same. The awards are designed to promote, sustain and recognize excellence in US Army Field Artillery batteries. A battery is recognized for fulfilling its mission based on its mission-essential task list (METL) in an outstanding manner or, in the case of a deployed battery, fulfilling its nonstandard mission in support of peacekeeping, peace enforcement, homeland security, etc., in an outstanding manner. Field Artillery firing batteries and headquarters, target acquisition, administrative and training batteries are eligible for the awards.

Each FA brigade and division artillery commander can select one battery to compete in this Army-wide competition. In the case of an FA battalion or separate battery that does not fall under an FA brigade or division artillery, the brigadelevel (or higher commander) for whom the battalion or separate battery works writes the endorsement, regardless of branch. An FA battalion in this category can submit only one battery for consideration.

The 2003 Knox and Hamilton Best Battery nominees must have their packets into the Office of the Deputy Commanding General (DCG), Fort Sill, Oklahoma, 60 days prior to the award date. The winning batteries will be featured in a subsequent edition of Field Artillery.

Submissions. Each packet includes a cover sheet, table of contents, the FA brigade/division artillery/other commander’s recommendation (one page memorandum) with up to three endorsements, an objective data sheet and the battery commander’s summary (a two-page, double-spaced typed, stand-alone narrative outlining the battery’s accomplishments). The objective data sheet covers statistics related to physical readiness, command inspections, Army drug and alcohol prevention and control, safety, soldier care, reenlistment, promotions, weapons qualifications, common task training, etc. The battery commander’s stand-alone narrative can include, but is not limited to, training exercises, deployments, digital sustainment training, higher level command inspections, physical training and readiness, reenlistment, promotions, maintenance, supply economy and awards during the 12 months prior to the award date.

The winning AC and ARNG batteries will have representatives at appropriate ceremonies or conferences for presentation of the Knox and Hamilton Awards’ plaques and battery streamers.

COPYRIGHT 2002 U.S. Field Artillery Association

COPYRIGHT 2004 Gale Group