JROTC named Civic Organization of the Year


Austin Julian and Taylor Roth, Reporters

The JROTC program was honored by the Town of Wake Forest to be the Civic Organization of the Year.

Retired Lt. Colonel Dimitri Belmont has been a part of the program since 2003, and Retired Command Sgt. Maj. Ginger Cribb has been working along-side him since 2007.

Cadet enrollment has increased by 20 percent since last year, with 161 cadets participating currently.

The Civic Organization of the year is awarded to the organization that has the biggest impact serving the community.

Senior Battalion Commander Evan Holst feels that working as a unit has led up to winning this award.

“It was a great achievement because we all worked together to achieve things and getting this award for the first time for ROTC was just a big success. It finally shows all our hard work finally paying off,” Holst said. “It supports our mission statement of motivating young people to be better citizens.”

Having a strong presence in the community is a major part of the JROTC program.

“It’s real important for them to do community service because they need to give back to their community, and they learn and grow from that,” Cribb said.

Cadets have been a part of events such as Purple Heart, Meet in the Street, local parades and more.

Cribb enjoyed the Purple Heart ceremony the most.

“All the cadets get to see those who have served and sacrificed for our nation to give them the rights that they have today.”

The civic organization award isn’t the only thing the program has received to show their hard work within the community.

Belmont noted the program was awarded, “honor unit with distinction for the last eight years, which allows kids to wear the gold star on their uniform. We had the cadet that was the top cadet at the JROTC cadet leadership challenge camp in Virginia and we have kids in West Point.”

The civic organization award was given to the JROTC program because of the standards that are instilled on the cadets each day.

Cribb said, “The Army values, Loyalty, duty, respect, selfless service, .integrity and personal courage.”