BLOOMINGTON, Minn. --
Marine officials selected Twin Cities as the 9th Marine Corps District Recruiting Station of the Year recently.
Twin Cities secured the title by starting out the 2012 fiscal year strong and never relinquished their number one overall position.
"I commend the leadership team of Maj. Kenneth Gawronski, Sgt. Maj. Cox and Master Sgt. Reuland ... and most importantly, all the Marines from RS Twin Cities," said Col. James J. Minick, 9th Marine Corps District commanding officer.
Minick also wished them continued success in the next fiscal year stating "there is no obstacle you can't overcome."
"Be proud of your performance," he said. "You continue to set the standard and ensure our Marine Corps is ready for the future. Never lose sight of the importance of this duty. Without you, our Corps ceases to exist."
Earning the station of the year title is quite an accomplishment, because it marks a first in the station's 47-year history; something no other Twin Cities team ever achieved.
"When I first stepped on deck, nobody thought we could do it," Gawronski said. "I always knew we had the right people. All I did was work to change the mindset and the Marines made it happen."
Since most of the recruiters stationed here depart after completing their 36-month tour, the majority of historical information on hand about the command is limited to recruiting facts and figures. Luckily, there is one woman who has served with Twin Cities for the past three decades and experienced its highs and lows firsthand.
"I was shocked to hear we were selected, because I never thought it was going to happen," said Joann Schultz. "For many years we were known as 'Minnehopeless' because we consistently failed to make mission. We used to make bets on how much we would miss by each month."
Schultz also described how recruiters used to make it clear they didn't want orders to the Land of 10,000 Lakes due to its "losing reputation."
"Nowadays people are asking to come here, so I believe we will stay on this winning path and be a force to be reckoned with in the future," she said.
Twin Cities went on to place third in Western Recruiting Region's station of the year competition.
“Over the last 12 months it has been a pleasure to work day in and day out with the Marines,” said Executive Officer Capt. Timothy O’Neil. “Major Gawronski made it clear to every member of the command what was expected of them. He showed us all where we could improve and then, as Marines always do, the team executed. From the A-Billets in support to the canvassing recruiters who were on the streets, each Marine covered down on their sector and executed brilliantly.”