Leadership News

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Tag me


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If you want to review my resume you can go to



Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Gates Salutes U.S. Servicemembers at Awards Dinner

By Gerry J. Gilmore
American Forces Press Service

Oct. 16, 2007 - Six
U.S. military members recognized by a local patriotic organization for their overseas service in the war on terror also received Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates' personal thanks here yesterday evening. "You are the best, and we all owe you. And, in all sincerity, we're all humbled by you," Gates told the Grateful Nation Award recipients at the start of his remarks at the Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs' annual award dinner.

"It's surreal," Grateful Nation Award honoree
Army Reserve Staff Sgt. Jason T. Fetty said of his meeting with Gates. He said the experience was "an incredible honor."

Fetty received the Silver Star for actions in Afghanistan in February, when he stopped a suicide bomber from killing hundreds of innocent people at a hospital opening in Khost. The staff sergeant forcibly maneuvered the would-be killer away from the crowd when the bomb went off.

Fetty, who's recovering from his wounds from the blast, said he was pleased to learn later that the grateful Afghans had staged a huge anti-Taliban demonstration after the incident.

Other 2007 Grateful Nation Award recipients are:

Marine Corps Staff Sgt. Jose Romero,

Navy Lt. Seth A. Stone,

Coast Guard Petty Officer 1st Class Jesse K. Gitchel,

Air Force Staff Sgt. Elizabeth C. Spradley, and

Air Force Staff Sgt. Ryan A. Wallace.

It was "terrific" to visit with the servicemembers, Gates said as he thanked each one prior to the start of the dinner. "It's such an honor to be with them and meet them," he said.

Spradley, an explosive ordnance disposal technician, helped clear more than 5,000 miles of Iraqi roads from improvised explosive devices during her recent tour of duty in Kirkuk. She participated in 170 high-risk missions and neutralized 35 improvised explosive devices and two car bombs.

"We would disarm and mitigate any hazards along the roadways in Iraq," Spradley recalled, noting she was too focused on her missions to be distracted by the danger.

She said meeting the defense secretary and receiving the JINSA award "truly are an honor."

Stone, a
Navy SEAL special warfare operations specialist, earned two Silver Stars and a Bronze Star with a "V" device for valor for service in Ramadi, Iraq, in September 2006, where he led his team in fighting off a group of insurgents that threatened to destroy another SEAL unit.

Coast Guardsman Gitchel was in temporary command of a 110-foot-long cutter when he and his crew stared down a group of Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps-crewed ships in the North Arabian Gulf in August 2007. The Iranians were threatening Iraqi oil rigs.

Romero served with distinction in combat with a tank battalion that participated in the drive to Baghdad during Operation Iraqi Freedom in the spring of 2003. Afterward, he became a renowned Marine drill instructor noted for his
leadership and team-building skills used in molding the lives of young Marines.

Wallace is an air combat controller who earned the Silver Star medal for more than 24 hours of continuous work calling in airstrikes against insurgents during combat in Najaf, Iraq, during his October 2006 to April 2007 service in Iraq. About 250 insurgents were killed in the battle.

"It was a surprise, and it is an honor, as well," Wallace said of receiving the Grateful Nation Award. Meeting Gates was an awesome experience, he added.

Gates received the Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs Henry M. Jackson award for his contributions to national security as a former career Central Intelligence Agency officer who worked his way up to director. Later, Gates was a key national security advisor, and he now serves as defense secretary. Previous Jackson Award recipients include Vice President Richard B. Cheney and former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Peter Pace.

Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Marine Gen. James E. Cartwright assisted David P. Steinmann, chairman of JINSA's board of advisors, during the Grateful Nation Award ceremony. Cartwright saluted the awardees as well as all U.S. servicemen and women engaged in the war against terrorism.

"These young people will just flat knock your socks off," the four-star general said. "They are our greatest generation and our greatest treasure, and we should never forget that."

"I think nothing gives JINSA greater institutional gratification than tonight," Steinmann said before the servicemembers' award ceremony. "We need our Grateful Nation Award winners. They represent the best that our country can produce.

"We need to be reminded that our country produces men and women like this," Steinmann said.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Army Works to Accelerate Leader Development

By Donna Miles
American Forces Press Service

Oct. 10, 2007 - The
Army is exploring new ways to accelerate the development of leaders prepared for the broad challenges they'll face in what's expected to be an era of persistent conflict, the Army's chief of staff said here yesterday. "We are committed to investing in our officer, warrant officer, noncommissioned officer and civilian leaders," Army Gen. George W. Casey Jr. told attendees at the annual Association of the U.S. Army convention. "In this era of persistent conflict, it is absolutely essential that we develop leaders that can handle the challenges of full-spectrum operations."

Full-spectrum operations include the broad range of missions soldiers can be called on to carry out: from supporting peacetime operations to conducting major combat operations, and everything in between.

This operating environment requires agile, adaptive
leaders, able to shift quickly and smoothly between missions, Casey said.

leaders in the 21st century must be competent in their core competencies, broad enough to operate across the full spectrum of conflict, able to operate in joint, interagency and combined environments, at home in other cultures and courageous enough to see and exploit opportunities in the complex environments they will be operating in," he said.

Just as warfare has changed, so too has the way the
Army develops leaders, Army Lt. Gen. William Caldwell IV, commander of the Army's Combined Arms Center at Fort Leavenworth, Kan., said during a panel discussion about accelerating leader development.

"We don't want to teach you what to think," he said. "We want to teach you how to think."

This effort extends throughout the Army's education and professional development system, through a blend of formal education, operational experience and guided self-development, Caldwell said.

Officer candidates are getting more field and operational experience, Maj. Gen. W. Montague Winfield, commander of
U.S. Army Cadet Command, told attendees. Officers are getting more educational opportunities and more access to joint, interagency, intergovernmental and multinational training, Brig. Gen. Mark O'Neill, deputy commandant of the Army's Command and General Staff College, told the group.

Warrant officers are attending more
officer training courses, said Col. Mark Jones, command of the Army Warrant Officer Career Center. And recognizing that its enlisted force is "taking on more responsibility earlier in their careers than ever before, the Army is adapting its training programs so they're better prepared, said Col. Donald Gentry, commandant of the Army Sergeants Major Academy.

Meanwhile, the Army is tapping into best practices from the private and public sectors to accelerate training and development of its civilian work force that's filling critical positions and maintaining continuity, said Volney "Jim" Warner, director of the Army's Civilian Development Office.

How well the
Army develops soldiers and leaders able to operate effectively and efficiently in an era of persistent conflict will have far-reaching impact on the force and its ability to succeed, the officials agreed.

"Soldiers are the strength of this
Army, and they make this Army the strength of this nation," Casey said. "It will be our soldiers who lead us to victory over the nation's enemies, and it will be soldiers who preserve the peace for us and for our allies."