By Amy Perry, Fort Lee Public Affairs

FORT LEE, Va. – Fort Lee’s 217th Military Police Detachment and 544th MP Detachment (Military Working Dog) were named the winners of the Training and Doctrine Command fiscal 2015 Brigadier General David H. Stem Award.

The recognition program honors outstanding TRADOC MP units, said Capt. A.J. Widmeyer, 217th commander. Selection of a winner is based on the unit’s performance during the fiscal year, as measured by recorded accomplishments, achievements and command programs that best exemplify the intent of the award’s sponsor.

“Soldiers and leaders of the 217th and 544th worked very hard, and capitalized on a number of unforecasted training and schooling opportunities, as well as excelling at NCO and civilian education,” said Widmeyer. “Numerous Soldiers re-enlisted, and the unit received laudatory comments from a number of outside inspections, such as Initial Command Inspections, G-4 Command Supply Discipline Program Inspections and Physical Security Inspections.”

Widmeyer said this is the first time the unit earned the award, and he isn’t surprised by the selection.

“I was pretty confident that we would win,” he said. “Seeing how much effort the Soldiers put into schooling, training and education over the past year, I had a hard time believing another MP Detachment had such a good batch of Soldiers.”

The award was truly a team effort, said Widmeyer.

“The unit would not have won this award without the hard work and drive of the Soldiers,” he said. “Collectively, they stepped up to any request made of them, whether it be short notice schooling opportunities, joint training events or just working harder; they really laid the foundation for winning this award.”

In the award packet, the 217th named several of its accomplishments including supporting a pre-deployment training event for special operations groups from Fort Bragg, N.C.; conducting the first live-exposure training with the Criminal Investigation Division here; holding the first M-4 night fire range training event; and participating in numerous active shooter training scenarios on the installation, among many other accomplishments. The 544th was recognized for its numerous escort and security sweep missions for the president, the United Nations General Assembly, the Army Chief of Staff and the Pope, among other special occasions.

In the award announcement, Maj. Brad Fisher, TRADOC G-3/4 operations, said the unit put together an impressive package.

“(The) submission was an excellent representation of (their) accomplishments, first and foremost for the data, but also for the quality of the book,” he said of the award package.

First Lt. Fiona Decaudin was responsible to putting together the award package, said Widmeyer, and she did a great job.

“Due to her meticulous nature and attention to detail, she was able to compile all of the Soldiers’ and the unit’s accomplishments and present it in a coherent award packet,” he said.

Tony DeWitt, director of Fort Lee Emergency Services, also congratulated the unit for its accomplishment.

“They are now in the elite category of being the best MP Detachment in TRADOC,” he said. “I’m proud of them for winning this esteemed award and for the support they provide to the Fort Lee community.”

Widmeyer said he’s glad the unit and its Soldiers are getting recognition for their performance during the past year.

“I could not be more proud of the effort put forth by the Soldiers and NCOs of the 217th and 544th Detachments,” he said. “Without their hard work and dedication to excellence the unit would not have won the BG David Stem award, and would not have earned the prestigious title of ‘Best MP Detachment in TRADOC.’”

Next, the unit will represent TRADOC and compete at the Army headquarters level in the fiscal 2015 Brigadier General Jeremiah P. Holland Award program.