Retired Marine Recognized, Cares For Marines
(May 9, 2010)
Officials with the Honolulu-Pacific Federal Executive Board recognized John H. Gaukler
as the U.S. Marine Corps Forces, Pacific's Federal Employee of the
Year for professionalism, administrative and technical skill April
29 at the Sheraton Waikiki Hotel, Hawaii, during the 54th Annual
Excellence in Federal Government Awards ceremony.
CAMP H.M. SMITH, Hawaii (MCN - 5/4/2010) — John H. Gaukler is a humble man.
Most people walking past him would see a kind, quiet professional. There are
no plaques or awards adorning his office, no Marine stickers, photos or any
inclination as to what his life's been. But, the work he does is pivotal to
the success of his unit and is a familiar task for any retired sergeant
major, he takes care of Marines.
The Hawaii-Pacific Federal Executive Board recognized Gaukler, U.S. Marine
Corps Forces, Pacific's assistant reserve liaison officer, as the MarForPac
Federal Employee of the Year for professionalism, administrative and
technical skill April 29 at the Sheraton Waikiki Hotel, Hawaii, during the
54th Annual Excellence in Federal Government Awards ceremony.
The annual award is intended to highlight the outstanding contributions of
federal employees, which includes service members and civilians, said Dor�
L. Rojas, a civilian personnel specialist with MarForPac.
“He's a great guy,” Rojas said. “He's hard working, really cares about the
Marines. He works to make sure the Marines are taken care of and he's really
good at that.”
The Pontiac, Mich. native has served in his current position
for almost 10 years. His duties include managing the Active
Duty Support Budget, which ensures his command has the funds
to activate reserve Marines to serve in active duty
garrison or deployed, should the need arise. A task he says aides
the accomplishment of MarForPac's taxing mission.
However, his involvement doesn't end with number crunching. Gaukler works
with activated reserve Marines to ensure their transition is as smooth as
possible and assists the Marines with issues, as they arise.|
“I started a new chapter in my life when I left the Marine Corps,” Gaukler
said explaining the lack of memorabilia from his 1961-91 Marine career.
“When I started my career in civil service, I wanted to establish myself
because of what I know today not the chevrons on my collar. But, when you
leave the Marine Corps, you don't close the door behind you. Being a Marine
is in my blood and when I saw the opportunity to get back to working with
Marines, to take care of Marines, I thought it would be great to work with
“I see Marines who have problems with their orders, if they're reservists,
in most cases I can point them in the right direction.”
His ability to guide Marines in the right direction is a skill his superiors
have noticed and one of the numerous reasons Lt. Col. James McGuire,
MarForPac's reserve liaison officer, nominated him for the award.
“Mr. Gaukler has done a fantastic job for the year and a half that I've been
working with him and I've heard nothing but good things about his time here
before I took over,” McGuire said. “He's a technical expert in all the
systems we use. His character is flawless. His professionalism and
competence are of the highest quality and he just has a knack for
understanding a Marine's thought process.
“When a Marine comes to him with a problem, he's either seen it before or
knows where to get the information off the top of his head. He's just a
great guy. Submitting him for the award was a no-brainer”
Despite his exceptional performance, Gaukler is a man who receives no
satisfaction from the spotlight. As far as he's concerned, he's simply doing
his job and taking care of Marines.
“I don't like receiving personal recognition,” Gaukler said. “I prefer to be
behind the scenes. But, I'm honored to receive this award and humbled by my
boss nominating me for it.”
Gaukler beat-out all MarForPac civilian employees and service members
submitted for this year's award.
“It was the first time I submitted a civilian for an award like this,”
McGuire said. “I can't say that I'm surprised he was accepted. He's doing a
great job and really deserves it.”
Article and photo by USMC Sgt. Juan D. Alfonso
Marine Forces Pacific
Marine Corps News
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