AUSA is pleased to announce that Command Sergeant Major William R. Pewther, U.S. Army Retired, has been selected as the 2007 recipient of the Sergeant Major of the Army William G. Bainbridge Medal for Distinguished Service. Sergeant Major Pewther is a native of Cincinnati, Ohio and is a member of the Major Samuel Woodfill AUSA Chapter.
The Bainbridge Medal is awarded each year to a noncommissioned officer, active, Army National Guard, U.S. Army Reserve or retired, for a lifetime of selfless service to the United States Army and the noncommissioned officer corps.
Sergeant Major Pewther’s fifty-six year love affair with the Army began in February 1951 at Fort Knox, Kentucky. After basic and advanced individual training, he was assigned to the 7th Infantry Division, Puson, Korea. He returned from his combat tour in Korea and was assigned to Fort Custer, Michigan and was subsequently discharged from active duty in February 1953.
Continuing his military career in the United States Army Reserve, he joined the 83rd Infantry Division. During his more than 12 years as a noncommissioned officer in the U.S. Army Reserve, his outstanding duty performance was rewarded with both promotions and duty positions of increasing responsibility and trust.
In 1965, Pewther joined the Army National Guard and was promoted to master sergeant (an E-8 under the new pay grade structure) and in October 1969, he was promoted to command sergeant major and assigned to the 147th Infantry Battalion. For two years, starting in 1976, while continuing to serve as the battalion command sergeant major, CSM Pewther returned to active status as the full time Ohio National Guard Recruiting Supervisor responsible for all recruiters in southwest Ohio. Sergeant Major Pewther retired from active status on 22 July, 1989.
Sergeant Major Pewther’s service to the Army and the nation did not end with retirement. He continued to serve by joining the Ohio Military Reserves as the Command Sergeant Major of the 1st MP Brigade in Zenia, Ohio. While serving in the Ohio Military reserves, he was recalled to active duty during the first Gulf War. He rejoined the Ohio Military Reserves after Desert Shield/Desert Storm as a command sergeant major until his retirement in 1997.
Pewther has been a member of the Major Samuel Woodfill Cincinnati Chapter of AUSA since 1990. He was elected chapter president in 1996, and held the position until 2004. During his tenure, he organized the NCO of the Year award for the active, Army National Guard, and U.S. Army Reserve NCOs and has insured their attendance as guests of the chapter at the AUSA annual meeting. He continues to be very active in the chapter as the Vice President for NCO and Soldier Programs.
Volunteering and working long hours providing leadership to the community are an important part of CSM Pewther’s life. He is active in his church and senior citizens group, serving as a reader at weekly services. He also volunteers at the Veteran’s Administration Hospital.
Command Sergeant Major Pewther has served his country, his community, and the United States Army with distinction for more than five decades. He is a community leader and role model for Soldiers – and his lifetime accomplishments clearly qualify him deserving of this prestigious award.