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Civilian of the Quarter finds satisfaction in helping others

By Navy Seaman Trenton Kotlarz Defense Information School


Bob Beyer, the team lead for the 16-day radio segment of the Broadcast Communication Specialist course at the Defense Information School on Fort Meade, isn’t the type to keep things to himself.

“I’m big on sharing,” he said. “Wanting to share, wanting to help, and wanting to encourage work really well in a teaching environment.”

Nor is he someone who works primarily for the paycheck.

“I can’t really work a job where my end result is money,” Beyer said. “Having a job that has worth and value is a lot more important to me than anything else. This job does that for me.”

Beyer’s dedication to his students and his craft earned him recognition as the DINFOS Civilian of the Quarter in July.

It started some 25 years ago when he joined the Marine Corps and entered the broadcasting field.

The field was a natural fit for his personality, and he fell in love with it instantly, Beyer said. A background in standup comedy and amateur magic made him comfortable with performing for an audience.

“I took to it like a dolphin takes to water,” he said. “It’s where I belong. I never looked back. Never wanted to.”

He continued to follow his passion for radio after retiring in 2005 as a master sergeant and returning to civilian life.

First, he worked as the general manager of a radio station in Texas. He then went on to become the general manager of two Christian radio stations in Louisiana.

While preparing to teach a creative writing and journalism class at a Christian youth camp in Louisiana, he made a phone call to DINFOS to get some information.

It was this phone call that led him back to DINFOS, where he had taught radio skills from 1994 to 1998, and where he still had friends on the staff.

“They were like, ‘Funny you calling back now,’” Beyer recalled. “‘There are 15 positions opening up here soon for civilians. You need to come back here.’

“The door kept opening wide,” he said. “So, I made the transition, and this is where I’ve been since 2010.”

Beyer’s commitment does not go unnoticed by his fellow intructors.

“I would say that without a doubt, his passion for radio in general is unmatched,” said Army Staff Sgt. Seth Barham, a radio instructor for the BCS course.

Beyer’s genuine interest shows through in his interactions with the students and staff, Barham said. He places people above anything else.

“He has a huge heart,” Barham said. “The students and fellow instructors are always at the forefront of his concern.”

Beyer said that if he didn’t love teaching, he wouldn’t do it.

He said he appreciated the Civilian of the Quarter award for the third quarter of 2016 – which was presented Aug. 18 during a faculty and staff training day – but would not let it go to his head.

“I know myself too well to be impressed,” Beyer said.

“Do I think I do more than anyone else around here?” he asked. “I don’t think so.”

Beyer chalked up the award to enjoyment of his job and being blessed to be chosen from among others who are equally deserving.

“I just happened to be the one they identified this quarter,” he said.

Helping other instructors and coaching students give him the greatest joy, he said, especially when a student who has been struggling suddenly makes a breakthrough.

“Those things are all very satisfying,” Beyer said. “It’s good to be able to share what you know and what you’ve learned with others, so they can, in turn, go on and do what you used to do.”