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Live and Lead with Authenticity

Live and Lead with Authenticity
Our founder Dan Elder was a contributor for this latest book project, this one includes his insights on How to Live and Lead with Authenticity. Since 2007, more than 10,000 leaders have benefited from the True Growth leader development experience. Our team of facilitators and coaches are committed to helping leaders embrace the transformational power of authenticity to improve themselves and the lives... Read More

Taming Technology

Taming Technology
In this connected world, today’s military Leaders may often find themselves distracted in a sea of technology. One moment we are turning on our first computer with excitement and the next we are juggling multiple unit-issued phones, tablets and personal devices, computer email on multiple secure open and private networks, and social media requirements that can all lead to “digital... Read More

Why do we sing in formation?

Why do we sing in formation?
You can thank Pvt. Willie Duckworth. The tech manual for marching is FM 3-21.5 (FM 22-5 for you old farts), and it says: “To enable soldiers to learn or maintain cadence and develop rhythm, the instructor should have them count cadence while marching. a. To count cadence while marching at quick time, the instructor gives the preparatory command, Count Cadence, as the... Read More

Lessons of von Steuben – Thoughts from the Past

Lessons of von Steuben  – Thoughts from the Past
We all have seen images of downtrodden soldiers at Washington’s encampment in 1778 at Valley Forge…soldiers who were underclothed and resorted to rags wrapped around their feet because there were not enough shoes to go around. By all accounts, the Army was downhearted and disorganized, and Washington was in need of an effective fighting force. Enter an outsider, someone of... Read More

2009 – THE YEAR OF THE NONCOMMISSIONED OFFICER

2009 – THE YEAR OF THE NONCOMMISSIONED OFFICER
First Region of the Association of the United States Army (AUSA) saluted noncommissioned officers for their outstanding service to the nation during the 2nd Year of the NCO in 2009. As part of that recognition, the Region commissioned known artist Jim Ryan, who has produced my signature prints and released them during their annual conference. In the accompanying proclamation that went... Read More

The SMA office and position turned 50 this year…

The SMA office and position turned 50 this year…
…AND NO ONE NOTICED. FOR TODAY’S SOLDIERS, THE POSITION OF SERGEANT MAJOR OF THE ARMY APPEARS AS NATURAL AS A SQUAD LEADER. But 50 short years ago it was not so. It was on the Fourth of July 1966 that the Chief of Staff of the Army Gen. Harold K. Johnson approved the establishment of the position of Sergeant Major... Read More

Change of Responsibility Script

Change of Responsibility Script
COMMAND SERGEANT MAOR CHANGE OF RESPONSIBILITY CEREMONY SEQUENCE OF EVENTS BAND:  From 1045 until 1100 plays appropriate music, and the Color Guard takes its initial position. PARTICIPATING UNITS: All MSC/Battalion/Company, the Honor Company, and HHC, Your Unit Name on the final line at “Parade Rest” NLT 1050 hours. NARRATOR:  At 1058 announces “LADIES AND GENTLEMEN, THE CEREMONY WILL BEGIN IN TWO MINUTES.  PLEASE... Read More

Spinning Flags at Change of Command

Spinning Flags at Change of Command
There are some ceremonies like the company change of command and the change of responsibility that have some key elements that are not clearly defined, so finding “a standard” is sometimes impossible. In many cases with large formations, it is usually the senior mission command HQs that creates a local policy when it comes to the gray areas surrounding ceremonies but... Read More

Historic First: A Medal for Sgt. William H. Carney

Historic First: A Medal for Sgt. William H. Carney
Born in 1840 to a slave mother in Norfolk, Virginia, who was later freed upon her owner’s death in 1854, William H. Carney eventually settled in New Bedford, Massachusetts and prepared himself to enter the ministry. 8 In 1863 the Union Army began to organize colored units, and one of the first was the 54th Massachusetts Infantry, organized at Camp... Read More

Last recipient of the Badge of Military Merit: SGT Daniel Bissell

Last recipient of the Badge of Military Merit: SGT Daniel Bissell
Daniel Bissell, the eldest son of Daniel and Elizabeth Bissell of Windsor, Connecticut, was born December 30, 1754. When the Revolution began he enlisted in the 5th Connecticut Regiment of the Continental Line, where his “sterling qualities of head and heart speedily gained the esteem of his comrades and the confidence of his officers.” He became a sergeant on September 1,... Read More

Short History of the Specialist Rank

Short History of the Specialist Rank
When considering the discussion for reintroducing of senior specialist ranks to the US Army one must reflect on the trials and tribulations of the past. Here is a short history of the US Army Specialist by CSM (Ret.) Dan Elder. When Washington assumed the role as Commander in Chief of the fledgling Continental Army in 1775, it had adopted the... Read More

Inspire Recruits and Capture our Legacy

Inspire Recruits and Capture our Legacy
With over 80-percent of the military force structure enlisted soldiers it is a fair assumption to say that “most people” in the military started their Army affiliation with a recruiter. There are few things that tie the brother-and-sisterhood together than the enlistment process and that starts off with the first interaction with a recruiter. Whether self initiated, advised by a family... Read More

US Army Highly Qualified Enlisted Expert

US Army Highly Qualified Enlisted Expert
Why not maximize Noncommissioned Officer talent post-military service? Challenge Today’s Army does not have ready access to a select group of highly qualified former enlisted leaders who possess the intellectual capacity, wisdom, and expertise to assist the Force in short-term, and often complicated projects. In cultivating Soldiers for Life surely talent management does not end at retirement? The type of expertise often... Read More

Book: Soldier for Life, the story of SMA Jack L. Tilley

Book: Soldier for Life, the story of SMA Jack L. Tilley
This book is more than just an autobiography of Jack L. Tilley, the 12th Sergeant Major of the Army, it is a series of leadership lessons based on selected stories from his more than 35-year career. The last Vietnam veteran to serve in that position from 2000-2004, SMA Tilley was at the Pentagon when terrorists crashed a plane into the... Read More

The NCO Induction Ceremony

The NCO Induction Ceremony
This is an excerpt from my original 1998 Noncommissioned Officer Induction Ceremony that eventually was added to the updated Army Noncommissioned Officer Guide FM 7-22.7 (TC 22-6) as Appendix F.  The yet unofficial Aug 2014 edition has removed the ceremony and it once again becomes an unrecognized informal ceremony. -Dan   The concept of inducting newly promoted noncommissioned officers into the corps... Read More