BY MARY WICOFF
Sgt. Camron “C.J.” Giuliani of Westville is being recognized as an outstanding junior-enlisted soldier in the military intelligence community.
Despite the attention he’s getting, the prestigious award hasn’t gone to his head.
“I say ‘thank you’ and go back to work,” he said during a telephone interview from his Army base at Fort Hood, Texas.
Giuliani, a signal intelligence analyst with Company A, 303rd Military Intelligence Battalion, 504th Battlefield Surveillance Brigade, has won the 2013 Command Sergeant Major Doug Russell Award.
Giuliani created a program that changed the way data is stored by the military intelligence community.
The program is called JEWLS (Joining Everything With Little Servicing) — a reference to his nickname, Jewels. While he was growing up in Westville, people had trouble pronouncing his last name, and the nickname stuck.
Giuliani, 20, will receive the Russell Award in Phoenix in April, as well as the civilian Knowlton Award. The Knowlton was established by the Military Intelligence Corps Association to recognize individuals who have contributed significantly to the promotion of Army intelligence. Recipients must demonstrate integrity and moral character, display an outstanding degree of professional competence, and serve the Military Intelligence Corps with distinction.
As if those two honors weren’t enough, Giuliani also was promoted to sergeant recently.
He said he’s “pretty excited” to have been tapped for the awards.
His parents, Camron and Tawnya Giuliani, are proud of him, too. The youth graduated from Westville High School in 2010.
“It doesn’t surprise me. He’s always been a driven person and helping other people out,” his father said. “We’re just extremely proud of this kid and he’s doing wonderful things.”
His son was always fixing things, and took an electronics class at Danville Area Community College, Giuliani Sr. said.
The younger Giuliani said he created the program during his deployment to Afghanistan from June 2011 to June 2012. He worked on the system whenever he had down time, adding, “I barely slept.”
Referring to the JEWLS initiative, he said, “It created the first ever database for metadata to be used by signals intelligence analysts that can be queried anywhere around the world within seconds of inputting information into the system.”
For example, someone can submit a piece of intelligence, and 10 seconds later, an official in Maryland can access that information. All branches of the service can use the system, he said.
The initiative began as an attempt to streamline operations on Combat Outpost Margah in Afghanistan.
Staff Sgt. Stuart Healy, who was Giuliani’s first-line supervisor during his deployment, said in an article in the Fort Hood Sentinel: “The operation that was in place when we came in was typical of any intelligence operation in Afghanistan at the time. They conducted the intelligence collection mission and then relayed the information as quickly as possible.
“It was on the second day in the country when then-Private 1st Class Giuliani came to me with an idea to make the process go a little faster. I’m all about working smarter, not harder, so I encouraged him to go ahead with the JEWLS project.”
The JEWLS initiative is now used throughout the intelligence community.
According to his peers, Giuliani also displays humility and a genuine desire to help his fellow soldiers. First Sgt. Exzabia Dukes, Company A, 303rd Military Intelligence Battalion, said in the article that Giuliani, who was a specialist, didn’t even mention his award when he went before the promotion board. “That’s how humble he is,” Dukes said.
When it came time to pick a candidate for the award, Dukes said Giuliani was the first one who stood out.
“He acts like a noncommissioned officer. He is already training other soldiers how to do their job. Other NCOs go to him for knowledge, as well. He loves his job and it shows,” Dukes said.
Healy added, “Giuliani didn’t solve the intelligence gathering and data-basing problem because he is some technical genius. Giuliani solved the problem because he took the initiative and had the drive to make it work.”
The elder Giuliani said it’s amazing how decorated his son is, considering his age. His son received a combat action badge on his first day overseas, and has received numerous awards, including multiple Army commendation medals.
The young man said he’s working on a newer version of the JEWLS program. His contract ends March 2015, and he hasn’t decided yet whether he’s going to re-enlist.
Giuliani’s older brother, Josh, is also in the Army, and younger brother, Cody, will enlist this summer.