75th Ranger Regiment announces the recipient of the Col. Ralph Puckett Leadership Award


running up that hill
Jan 3, 2007
in Wonderland, with my Alice

FORT BENNING, Ga. (USASOC News Service, July 11, 2011) —The 75th Ranger Regiment announced the 2011 recipient of the fourth annual Col. Ralph Puckett Leadership award at an awards ceremony held at Ranger Memorial July 1.

The recipient of the 2011Ralph Puckett Leadership Award is Capt. Todd Elrod from 2nd Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment.

Five junior officers, in the ranks of lieutenant and captain, representing three of the Regiment’s four battalions participated in the competition.

Officers were required to compete in the Army physical fitness test, qualify on an M-4, stress shoot, common task testing, land navigation, five-mile run, combatives, leaders reaction course, urban orienteering, written exam, essay, and board.

In addition, they were required to submit a pre-competition essay, complete a written exam and an oral board.
The award was created to recognize junior officers who have demonstrated a “take charge leadership” in demanding circumstances where their personal actions clearly made a difference in the outcome of events.

The award was named after retired Col. Ralph Puckett, former Honorary Colonel of the 75th Ranger Regiment and war hero.

“It is an honor and also humbling to have this award named after me,” said retired Col. Ralph Puckett. “There are certainly a number of great Rangers that the Regiment could have named this competition after.”

Puckett observed all aspects of the competition.

“All of the competitors are in outstanding physical condition,” said Puckett. “This competition challenges the competitors physically, mentally and professionally.”

As the Regiment continues to hold this competition, it improves the combat testing phase every year. For many of the evaluators, this is their second or third year evaluating the competition.

In my opinion, this competition is even better than last year,” said Puckett. “The non-commissioned officer evaluators are experienced, highly skilled and professional Rangers. These men have brought this competition to a new level.”

The competition tested core Ranger Skills and the ability to think through tactical and complex problems in demanding circumstances and generate successful outcomes.

“It’s an honor to receive this year’s award,” said Elrod, a native of Shaver Lake, Calif. “Col. Puckett is an amazing man. I aspire to be like him and follow his leadership example.”

Select junior officers serving in the 75th Ranger Regiment, who exemplify the values, ideals and character of the Regiment, were nominated for the competition.

The competition tested core Ranger skills and the ability to think through tactical or complex problems in demanding circumstances and generate successful options.

There are three Col. Ralph Puckett leadership awards that are presented to outstanding officers on Fort Benning.

In addition to the 75th Ranger Regiment, an award is presented to the Officer Honor Graduate at the U.S. Army Ranger Course. Recipients of this award perform successfully in each leadership position, completed the demanding Ranger Course without repeating any phase, and was acclaimed by his peers.

The third award Puckett Leadership Award is presented to an officer who displayed exceptional leadership in the Maneuver Captains Career Course, and exhibits exemplary physical condition, consistent high academic standing and served in a leadership position.