SAN DIEGO – A Lawton, Oklahoma, native was selected as the Navy’s 2019 Aviation Boatswain’s Mate of the Year.

Stephanie Peterson, an aviation boatswain’s mate (handling) petty officer 1st class serves aboard the amphibious assault ship USS Makin Island (LHD 8) and was selected over 11,000 other eligible competitors for this annual award.

“I was shocked,” said Peterson. “It was unreal to hear that I had received this award. To be nominated in and of itself, was crazy. Being selected as one of the best ABs in a predominately male rate was even crazier.”The Aviation Boatswain’s Mate Association awards two of these Sailors in their respective fleet, one from the Atlantic and the other from the Pacific. These Sailors are selected based on their job performance, military professionalism and improvements within the aviation community.

Peterson also holds the title of USS Makin Island’s 2019 Sailor of the Year where she was selected as the top petty officer of her rank from more than 150 peers onboard.Peterson said her success stemmed from mentors she’s had through her 12 years in the Navy.

“I have learned that pushing yourself to where you want to be and having goals will set you up for success,” said Peterson. “Make those goals happen and don’t let anyone take those goals away from you.”

An annual ceremony is held to recognize the two selected. The ceremony has been postponed due to safety precautions related to COVID-19.

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Congratulations from Lawton and the entire State of Oklahoma on this great honor.  We are proud of you!  Read Story Here.