WASHINGTON (NNS) — The Fiscal Year 2016 Navy Judge Advocate General’s Corps In-Service Procurement Program (IPP) selection board met in February 2016 and selected Legalman 1st Class Sharon Soileau, the first legalman selectee in the program’s three year history.
The Navy JAG Corps IPP Selection Board met in February to consider 20 highly qualified applicants. The board used the “whole person” concept to identify those applicants with the greatest potential for successful service as a Navy judge advocate.
Soileau, Defense Service Office Pacific, Yokosuka Japan, enlisted in the Navy in 2007. Prior to enlisting in the Navy she earned an Associate of Applied Science degree in Paralegal Studies from the University of Alaska in December 2006, and a Bachelor of Applied Science degree in Paralegal Studies from Roger Williams University in August 2013.
“It is an incredible honor to be selected,” said Soileau. “I cannot express in words the gratitude I feel for being chosen to embark on this incredible journey and to serve as a JAG in the United States Navy.”
Soileau’s first duty assignment as a legalman was as legal Clerk onboard USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76). A star among the legalman rating, she was awarded the 2015 Defense Service Office Pacific Sailor of the Year, was selected by the Naval Justice School numerous times to assist with community initiatives, such as re-writing the legalman Nonresident Training Manual, and she participated in the overhaul of the Legalman 52-Week Training Plan.
The JAG Corps IPP provides both funded and unfunded paths to JAG Corps commissions. Sailors who have earned a baccalaureate degree may apply for funded legal education; Sailors who have already earned a Juris Doctor degree from an American Bar Association accredited law school and a bar license from any U.S. state or territory, Puerto Rico, or the District of Columbia may apply for direct commission.
“I have been watching and idolizing the attorneys I have worked with for years,” said Soileau. “I am looking forward to working with them side by side but also stepping up outside of my role as a paralegal and doing the job. I am excited for the opportunity to have clients and litigate cases. I am also really looking forward to being a strong leader and role-model for the legalman working with me.”
The JAG Corps IPP is open to active-duty enlisted personnel and Navy full-time support personnel, in any rating or military occupational specialty, in pay grades E-5 through E-7 with at least two years and not more than 10 years of service at the time of application. Applicants must be at least 21 years old and under the age of 42 by the time of commissioning.