CAMP AS SAYLIYAH, Qatar –
U.S. Army Central leaders journeyed from the U.S. and across the Middle East to take part in USARCENT’s Leader Development Forum at Camp As Sayliyah, Qatar, April 25-26.
Lt. Gen. Michael X. Garrett, the commanding general of USARCENT, and Command Sgt. Maj. Eric C. Dostie, the command sergeant major for USARCENT, attended the summit to emphasize the importance of leader development as the attendees go out to shape the future of the organization and the Army.
The ALDF aimed to sync the efforts of USARCENT across the area of responsibility and give leaders a chance to meet face-to-face to build esprit de corps. Garrett also wanted his subordinate leaders to take responsibility for developing the next generation of military leaders.
"Thirty-one years ago, I had 30 people in my platoon," said Garrett. "I knew them all personally. This is something that I have tried to continue as the number of Soldiers I have been responsible for has grown. This is one of the things that I want all of you to take to heart, because this is as pertinent today as it was back then. As our junior Soldiers see that we care about them, they will be motivated to work harder."
"We all have a responsibility to mold the future leaders of our Army. It is our task to hold the Army up to the standards by showing the new Soldiers how to do it."
Maintaining readiness and capabilities at USARCENT was another topic that took center stage during this forum.
"We will need to continue to revise our tactics to ensure mission success in the Middle East," said Garrett. "As we move forward, we will need to ensure we maintain our readiness. As we refine and streamline our procedures, I am confident that we will continue to achieve our goals."
During the ALDF, the leaders of USARCENT used their free time to interact with each other and strengthen bonds of friendship.
"Attending events like these will help create bonds across the AOR," said Command Sgt. Maj. Larry Orvis, the command sergeant major for 2nd Armored Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division. "Being able to speak face-to-face with my counterparts across the region allows me to communicate more efficiently and streamline the process of information sharing."
Meeting with the senior leaders of USARCENT allows us to look at the campaign plan and ensure that all policies and procedures are fully understood, said Col. Douglas Jones, the officer-in-charge of intelligence collection and analysis at USARCENT.
As policies and plans are developed, they are worded to be as clear as possible, said Douglas. Meeting in a setting like this will allow for the regional leaders to work through everything in person. Douglas said the conversations are just as important as the information given during the briefs.
During the two-day meeting, the USARCENT command team held an ALDF kick-off social and then challenged the senior leaders to a functional fitness workout competition.
"The functional fitness challenge was a great chance to build camaraderie within the ranks," said Brig. Gen. Daniel Walrath, the commander of the Combined Joint Operations Center – Jordan. "It showed us that physical fitness is a priority for the general and that it should continue to be one for us as well.
At the end of the ALDF, Garrett expressed appreciation for the unit’s leaders and reiterated the importance of maintaining the standards of the military.
"I am so proud of my leaders within the AOR, because they uphold the Army values and standards at all times," said Garret. "This is what makes us ready to engage our enemies and allows us to work with our partners to create stability and security in the region."