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Sergeant Major (SGM) Norma Helsham is an Army veteran with more than 32 years of active duty service. She began her Army career on 24 August 1979 . It was during this time in history when the Army began expanding the roles of women in occupational specialties across the service which included Aviation becoming a separate occupational specialty and expanding roles for women to serve. SGM Helsham served as the First Sergeant of E Company, 214th Aviation Company assigned to the Southern European Task Force (SETAF) in Aviano, Italy. This assignment constituted her as the first female First Sergeant assigned to this heavy lift 16 ship, 200 personnel Chinook helicopter company, the largest Aviation Company in the Army at that time. SGM Helsham became the first woman to serve as the senior Aviation trainer for all of Europe as the senior enlisted leader for the Falcon Team at Hohenfels, Germany.
Her military education includes the Basic Noncommissioned Officer's Course, Advanced Noncommissioned Officer's Course, First Sergeant's Course, Joint Air Operations Course, Army Safety Course, Creative Leadership Course, Master Fitness Trainer Course, Battle Staff Noncommissioned Officer's Course, and the United States Army Sergeants Major Academy, Class 50. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Professional Aeronautics from Embry Riddle University and a Master’s Degree in Human Resource Development from Webster University.
Her awards and decorations include the Legion of Merit, the Army Meritorious Service Medal with 5 oak leaf clusters, Army Commendation Medal with 3 oak leaf clusters, the Army Achievement Medal, the Good Conduct Medal 10th award, National Defense ribbon with bronze star, the Southwest Asia Service Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, the NCOES Ribbon, the Army Service Ribbon, the Overseas Service Ribbon 5th award, and the Department of the Army Staff Badge.
She is currently employed with United Airlines where she serves as a customer service representative responsible for flight reservations, routing and passenger service for flights departing Washington Dulles Airport. She is a business owner and president of NJH Holdings LLC., a real estate investment company. She is a native of Guam.