Growing up on Orcas Island, it was only a matter of time before Chief Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EODC) Shawn Forbes joined the Navy. After long days working at his parent's restaurant, The Boardwalk, EODC Forbes would find himself diving, swimming, and hiking at Cascade Lake. This active lifestyle transitioned into a career that fit so perfectly, EODC Forbes has been celebrated as one of the top among his peers - one of the Navy's 2011 Recruiters of the Year.
Driven by a sense of duty to join the Navy Reserve in 1994, EODC Forbes knew it was time to take the next step by becoming active duty in 2001, following the events of Sept. 11th. Wanting to serve on a tightknit team in the thick of the action, EODC Forbes chose a career in Explosive Ordnance Disposal - one of the four special warfare groups that include the Navy SEALs.
Having served in numerous deployments around the world, EODC Forbes was most recently the Lead Chief Petty Officer of Platoon 542 in support of Task Force Raptor in the Middle Eastern city of Baghdad in 2009. In this role, EODC Forbes helped achieve mission success by identifying and neutralizing threats quickly and efficiently, protecting every person in his detachment.
Truly embodying the Navy’s motto - "A Global Force for Good" - EODC Forbes worked with a series of villages in Djibouti, Africa where he trained the natives on how to eliminate long forgotten explosive ordnance s buried in the ground after years of national unrest. His efforts not only made villages safer for families and children, but taught locals the necessary steps to ensure their safety for years to come.
Now, EODC Forbes focuses on an equally important mission – recruiting the next generation of members of the Naval Special Warfare/Naval Special Operations (NSW/NSO) communities who take on the most impossible missions and the most elusive targets. And EODC Forbes has a trained eye for spotting who will make it to the next level.
"It takes hard work and dedication to make it through the intensive training programs; and not all do," said EODC Forbes. "But for those who persevere, they have a lifetime of unforgettable experiences ahead and a chance to truly make a difference."
For his extraordinary performance, EODC Forbes has been awarded the Navy’s prestigious 2011 Recruiter of the Year Award for NSW/NSO/AIRR Coordinator of the Year. The Recruiter of the Year Award recognizes the most accomplished and successful recruiters across the country, who recruit the best men and women for America's Navy to fulfill today's missions and meet tomorrow's challenges. This award adds to his already impressive collection including the Bronze Star Medal, five Navy Achievement Medals, a Combat Action Ribbon, and many more.
"Being named a Recruiter of the Year is both an honor and a privilege and I am humbled by not only my peers, but all who answer the call to serve," said EODC Forbes.
Pictured from left to right: Rear Admiral Earl L. Gay, Commander, Navy Recruiting Command; EODC (ESW/PJ) Shawn Forbes; his wife Esther Scott-Forbes; Vice Admiral Scott R. Van Buskirk, Deputy Chief of Naval Operations. Photo by MC2 Dennis Irwin.