Duty Station: Naval Submarine Base Kings Bay
Number of Deployments: 2
Number of PCS's: 3
Share your military spouse story:
As a military male spouse, I’ve have learned the true definition of resiliency. It’s a different world for us as spouses, we don’t get the invitation to play dates at the park, girls night or other functions. Sometimes, the social media groups are labeled “wives” and we aren’t allowed entry. I decided I wanted to become part of the team and that’s what I did. In 2016 I became the President of The USS BOXER’s FRG. Our board broke several records on the waterfront for Fundraising and participation. Our spouses and family members, connected and made the best of the deployment. Our board members are still friends and we hang out from time to time, although we aren’t affiliated with the same commands. I accepted the role as the Ombudsman for the USS Florida and gained a different level of respect for service members and their spouses. The Submarine life isn’t for everyone, it will test every piece of patience that you have. I’ve come to the realization that I truly enjoy serving my community. I’m currently a Caseworker, for the Navy Marine Corps Relief Society, where I am afforded the opportunity to help those in need. It’s such a humbling role to help and to serve others while volunteering your time. Our base in Kings Bay, was hit by a tornado in 2021. Without hesitation I jumped in my vehicle and went to the touch down site to assist those in need. I helped some of the injured and assisted first responders. The day after the tornado, I was out in the community repairing signs, cutting trees, cleaning up with residents. I’m fortunate enough to have the ability to help others and I will not hesitate to do so. I believe if you help support your community, your community will prosper. I play many roles to support my Military Community and the community outside the gates. I’ve also volunteered at Habitat For humanity, Feeding America and the Salvation Army.
Share an example of your leadership experience within the military community:
When I was elected as the President of the FRG for the USS BOXER, I didn’t know what I was getting myself into. I had an absolutely amazing mentor and a super supportive board. Together, we formed an unstoppable alliance. We established a rule that ranks were left at the door and we were all family with the same mission. Our mission is to support or spouses and out households. I helped to mentor some of spouses that were new to the military life. I joined CORE ( Continuum of Resources and Education ) and took my training back to the FRG. I am happy with the outcome of my Presidency, because the families attached to the command, felt connected. I provided service that I would’ve appreciated.
Describe your involvement in the military community:
To date I have served as The FRG President, an Ombudsman, area leader with CORE, volunteer at The San Dollar Store, Scholarship Committee, Dolphin Store Manager, Ombudsman, Navy Marine Corps Relief Society Caseworker, Advocate for Armed Forces Housing Advocates and numerous roles in non profits. I am willing to get involved anywhere my skills can be utilized.
Describe how you support your community:
Supporting my community to increase knowledge and access to resources is my mission. I’ve participated in several organizations that help to mentor the community. As an Ombudsman, I enjoyed the opportunity to help resolve issues and offer resources. I am active in the social media groups for spouses. I provide resources, assistance or whatever I can. I believe knowledge is power and that helping others become knowledgeable on this military life, is the key to success.
What do you advocate for? Why?
I advocate for those that are afraid to speak up. I advocate for those that do not have the knowledge to speak up. I advocate for those that are seeking assistance and hit brick walls. My advocacy is truly meant to provide knowledge and support. I have a background in Legal, advocating for others is a passion of mine. Helping to resolve issues or confusion, is truly satisfying. I advocate, because I have a network of support to assist others. I advocate because I love to help.
How have you spread the message of your platform/advocacy?
I am active on social media and reach out to those in need. I participate in organization that help promote education for families. As an ombudsman, I sent out emails and made phone calls to connect with my community. I’ve participated in events on and off base. Volunteering at Navy Marine Corps Relief Society, I sit with spouses and active duty.
What do you hope to accomplish with the AFI Military Spouse of the Year®
I am hoping to inspire others to volunteer and advocate for others.
I am writing today to endorse a highly suitable individual, Sergio Rodriguez. In many ways exceeding the challenging requirements and expectations for the award, Sergio’s ambitions, intelligence, and accomplishments complement precisely the stellar community of past recipients and make him highly deserving of the honor and opportunity. He volunteers at the local Navy Marine Corps, all base activities, he helps assist in the local community off base and we both were able to meet with the Senator Warnock of Georgia to discuss change within the military community, just to name a few of his qualifications, and I would welcome the opportunity to mention he is a Army Veteran as well as a Navy Spouse. He is apart of Black Military Spouses of KingsBay for Black, Indigenous, and People of Color military support group who would be willing to express their support of the nominee. Please feel free to contact me at any time.
- by Ashley Jones
Sergio works very hard as an advocate to our community and support to us spouses. He participates in many activities that is sponsored on base and even gets us spouses involved and engaged. He is the driving force behind us all. He is more than deserving of this award.
- by Ebony Burton