Major Sebastian Welsh, M.D., received the Lieutenant Colonel Boyd McCanna “Mac” Harris Leadership Award for the Command and General Staff Officer Course (CGSOC) Class of 2022 in a ceremony conducted in the Lewis and Clark Center on June 8. Welsh graduated with the class during a ceremony on June 9 as one of more than 1,000 students.
Professor Andrew Shoffner, director of the Command and General Staff School Department of Command and Leadership presented the award.
Welsh was nominated by his small group and leadership department instructors. A panel comprised of leadership department faculty performed a blind review of all the nominations and selected Welsh for the award.
According to the CGSC catalog the Lieutenant Colonel Boyd McCanna “Mac” Harris Leadership Award recognizes one student each year for excelling academically and demonstrating superior leadership in class through outstanding performance in positions of responsibility and to their fellow students’ learning. In keeping with the award’s namesake, the award is presented to the individual possessing the innate leadership and communications skills embodied in the Army Leadership concept of “Be-Know-Do,” a concept developed by Lt. Col. Harris when he was a CGSC instructor and doctrine writer with the Center for Army Leadership. His concept was contained in the 1983 version of FM 22-100, “Army Leadership.” Harris was diagnosed and died of cancer in October 1983, the same month the Army published the new version of the leadership manual.
Lt. Col. Harris was a two-tour Vietnam veteran and was inducted into the Fort Leavenworth Hall of Fame in May 2016. The leadership award in his name is sponsored by Moira and Gary Sinise with a permanent endowment through the CGSC Foundation. Moira Sinise is Lt. Col. Harris’ sister. The endowment provides a memorial plaque as well as an individual award of a 2013 General of the Army Commemorative U. S. Silver Dollar in a presentation box along with a framed certificate. The awardee’s name is displayed on the permanent plaque on the first floor of the Lewis and Clark Center.
During the academic year for CGSOC Class of 2023, Welsh served as the leader of his staff group, maintained the highest GPA (4.18) of his team and the 11th highest GPA for the graduating class, and was the Division Chief of Staff to the Sustainment Warfighting Function during Exercise Eagle Owl, an exercise conducted with students from the United Kingdom’s command and staff college. According to his nomination form submitted by faculty leaders, Welsh’s “contribution to group learning is timely, poised, astute and facilitates critical thought without dominating or damaging the interactions of the staff group.”
In October 2022, Welsh received the Army Pediatrician of the Year and Special Achievement awards from the American Academy of Pediatrics. Also during this academic year, he volunteered more than 80 hours in the Munson Army Health Center Pediatrics Clinic on Fort Leavenworth, submitted two military history papers and one medical paper for publication, and served as an Ad Hoc peer-reviewer for multiple journals.
Welsh and his wife Kelly have two sons.