Sgt. Sherri Jo Gallagher, a service rifle shooter with the U.S. Army Marksmanship Unit, was selected as the Military Marksmanship Association Soldier of the Year for 2010.
Outgoing MMA president Robert I. Hoidahl Jr. made the announcement Feb. 4 during the MMA Annual Membership Meeting at the Pool International Shooting Complex. Hoidahl presented the Soldier of the Year Award to Gallagher — a .45- caliber pistol donated by the Smith and Wesson Corp.
A Prescott, Ariz., native, Gallagher had a remarkable year on and off the range. She was a member of the team’s winning 10-man team at the Interservice Rifle Championships in July, setting the stage for bigger things at the National Matches at Camp Perry, Ohio a few weeks later. Gallagher became the first service member in 23 years to win the National High-Powered Rifle Championship, establishing 11 new national records along the way.
She won the championship despite minimal preparation for the matches. Gallagher spent the majority of 2010 participating in Soldier of the Year contests, beginning at the unit level and going all the way to the Best Warrior Competition, the culmination of a yearlong test to recognize the Army’s Soldier and NCO of the Year for 2010. At the annual Association of the United States Army meeting Oct. 24, Sgt. Maj. of the Army Kenneth O. Preston announced Gallagher as the 2010 Army Soldier of the Year.
“I want to thank the MMA for all that they do,” Gallagher said. “They supported me throughout the year as I went to all of the Soldier of the Year boards. I couldn’t have done it without the help of my teammates and all of the Soldiers in the unit. The USAMU is without a doubt the best unit in the Army.”
The MMA’s objectives are to provide a link to the history of the USAMU, host ceremonies and social events, and support the goals and objectives of the USAMU. It also presides over the hall of fame voting. The MMA now boasts more than 600 members.
Gallagher has served with the unit since 2008. She has been awarded the Meritorious Service Medal, Army Commendation Medal, four Army Achievement Medals, Distinguished Rifleman Badge, President’s Hundred Tab, Schutzenschnur badge, and the Accession Support Brigade Soldier of the Quarter and Soldier of the Year, fiscal 2010.
Besides being named Army Soldier of the Year, she was also named Soldier of the Year in 2010 for Training and Doctrine Command, U.S. Army Accessions Command, and Accessions Support Brigade. She is currently training for an upcoming deployment to Afghanistan.