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Army Aviation Remains in High Demand

The demand for Army aviation will continue to grow beyond current requirements, which are already high, said Maj. Gen. David Francis, commander of the Army Aviation Center of Excellence and Fort Rucker, Alabama.

"The demand for aviation is as high as it ever has been and is not getting lower," he said.

Francis made his remarks during a presentation on the Army’s Future Vertical Lift modernization efforts Oct. 16 at the Association of the U.S. Army’s Annual Meeting and Exposition.

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Army Applies Lessons From Disaster Response

After four major hurricanes hit the U.S. in 2017, the Army used its lessons learned to update the way it prepares for a complex catastrophe, a senior Army leader said.

“We developed a template at Army North that actually [outlines] in terms of capabilities what we would deploy,” Lt. Gen. Laura Richardson, commander of U.S. Army North, said Oct. 16 while speaking on a panel about disaster response at the Association of the U.S. Army’s Annual Meeting and Exposition.

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McGee: Army In a ‘War for Talent’

The Army is putting its talent management overhaul to the test via the Army Talent Alignment Process.

The goal is to help the Army better manage its personnel while giving them more visibility and flexibility in their careers, said Maj. Gen. J.P. McGee, director of the Army Talent Management Task Force.

Talent management is a top priority for senior Army leaders as they work to recruit and retain the best people while positioning the force for what officials are calling a renewed era of great-power competition.

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Indo-Pacific Conflict Would be ‘Catastrophic’

The Army’s Multi-Domain Operations concept “is the way forward” in the Indo-Pacific as the service competes in the increasingly contested environment, a senior leader said.

“We do not want to have conflict in the Indo-Pacific region,” Maj. Gen. John “Pete” Johnson, acting commanding general of U.S. Army Pacific, said Oct. 16 during the Association of the U.S. Army’s Annual Meeting and Exposition. “It would be catastrophic for the globe if we did that.”

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Lumineye Named xTechSearch 2.0 Winner

After three days of demonstrations, Lumineye was named the winner of the second round of the Army’s xTechSearch competition.

The Boise, Idaho-based company received $250,000 to continue work on its man-portable wall-penetrating radar.

The announcement was made Oct. 16 during the Association of the U.S. Army’s Annual Meeting and Exposition in Washington, D.C.

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Army Studies Ways to Reduce Musculoskeletal Injuries

Running and road marches are the leading causes of musculoskeletal injuries in the Army, and a pilot underway with the 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault) seeks to determine why some are more prone to those injuries than others.

The injuries are not surprising, “because these are activities we have to do to be prepared for our missions,” Dr. Bruce Jones, a retired Army colonel and senior scientific adviser to the Army Public Health Center, said during a Warriors Corner talk Oct. 16 at the Association of the U.S. Army’s Annual Meeting and Exposition.

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Former JCS Chairman Dempsey Receives Marshall Medal

Former chairman of the Joint Chiefs and former Army chief of staff retired Gen. Martin Dempsey accepted the Association of the U.S. Army’s highest award for service to the nation Oct. 16 with a call to the Army and defense industry to be less like colleagues and business partners “and act more like family.”

“We need to build broad and deep public-private partnerships so that we can see, understand, collaborate and execute better and faster than our potential adversaries,” he said.

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Wednesday, October 16th

Wilkie: Care for Veterans is America’s Sacred Duty

It’s everyone’s duty to take care of America’s veterans and “make sure we live up to Abraham Lincoln’s vision,” the secretary of Veterans Affairs said at the Association of the U.S. Army’s Annual Meeting and Exposition.

Speaking at the National Partners Luncheon Oct. 16, Secretary Robert Wilkie recounted stories of soldiers, past and present, as well as members of his own family who have served and suffered in America’s wars but sometimes faced difficult experiences when they returned home.

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Army Culture Could Hinder Talent Management Overhaul

With widespread support among senior leaders, the time is right to overhaul the Army’s personnel management system, but the effort could be imperiled by an ingrained, unspoken culture that influences the way people get promotions and jobs, a military strategist said.

In remarks during “Army Talent Management in 2028,” a panel discussion at the Association of the U.S. Army’s Annual Meeting and Exposition, Leonard Wong, a research professor of military strategy at the U.S. Army War College Strategic Studies Institute, listed a host of factors that have aligned in favor of reform.

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Army Adapts To Recruit Cyber, Signal Soldiers

In recognition of the growing importance of cyber, electronic warfare and advanced communications, the Army is changing the way it assesses, trains and manages its cyber and signal personnel, said Maj. Gen. Neil Hersey, commanding general of the Army Cyber Center of Excellence.

Despite his title, Hersey noted that he runs both the cyber and signal schools and manages the cyber, electronic warfare and signal workforces. That combination is natural because “90% of what we do on the networks is done by the Signal Corps,” he said.

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Experts Warn U.S. Homeland Vulnerable to Attack

From cyber attacks to near-peer threats, the U.S. homeland is “no longer a sanctuary,” according to a panel of experts who spoke during the Association of the U.S. Army’s Annual Meeting and Exposition.

“For many years, the two oceans on either side of us served as protective moats, and the remote expanse of the Arctic above us as a significant defensive barrier to both the United States and to Canada,” said Navy Vice Adm. Michael Dumont, deputy commander of U.S. Northern Command. “But given modern technological advances, those two oceans are now avenues of attack, and the arctic is now an avenue of approach. We have to account for these attack vectors as we protect against modern threats.”

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U.S., Allies Must Learn to ‘Win Without Fighting’

The United States and its allies and partners must solve the problem of how to face adversaries in so-called "left of conflict" competition, a panel of experts said Oct. 15 during a forum at the Association of the U.S. Army’s Annual Meeting and Exposition.

The term describes the concept of engaging without combat. Russia, a potential near-peer adversary, is highly skilled at "left of conflict" operations, the panelists said.

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Army Continues Improving Soldier Weapons, Equipment

The Army is moving forward with its efforts to improve individual soldier weapons and equipment, a panel of experts said Oct. 15 at the Association of the U.S. Army.

Speaking at a Warriors Corner event, Brig. Gen. David Hodne, director of the Soldier Lethality Cross-Functional Team, highlighted the progress made since last year’s Annual Meeting.

“In fact, there were some aspects of last year’s AUSA where some would say that what we were pursuing was unachievable,” he said. “And I would tell you, those possibilities are on the [exhibit] floor here today.”

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Leaders Promise to Continue Working on Housing, PCS

Army leaders heard a torrent of complaints from soldiers and family members over challenges they’ve faced with poor housing conditions and permanent change-of-station moves during a family forum Oct. 15 at the Association of the U.S. Army’s Annual Meeting and Exposition.

In response, the Army leaders tried to assure the room full of spouses and soldiers that they are acutely aware of the concerns and are working to correct the problems, including finding ways to better inform Army families of their rights and ensure their complaints get to their unit and installation leadership.

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Gary Sinise & the Lt. Dan Band Thrill Crowd at AUSA 2019

Gary Sinise & the Lt. Dan Band rocked the house at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center Oct. 15.

“Gary Sinise and the Lt. Dan Band always bring energy and enthusiasm,” said retired Gen. Carter Ham, president and CEO of the Association of the U.S. Army. “The concert is an opportunity to say thank you to all those who have served and sacrificed—the Gold Star families, the wounded warriors. This is a celebration for their service.”

The band’s performance, co-sponsored by Veterans United, took place on the second day of AUSA’s Annual Meeting and Exposition in Washington, D.C.

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Tuesday, October 15th

McConville Supports Longer Tours, Fewer Moves

The Army is looking for ways to make PCS moves easier for soldiers and families, but Army Chief of Staff Gen. James McConville is not in favor of moving families during off-peak season.

“Some people are talking about, ‘Hey, we’ll move soldiers off peak’—I don’t sign up for that,” McConville said during a senior leadership town hall Oct. 15 at the Association of the U.S. Army’s Annual Meeting and Exposition.

Families tend to move in the summer—the peak permanent change-of-station moving season—because children are out of school, he said.

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Army Plans Massive Exercise in Europe

A massive multinational exercise set to begin in April is "the right type of exercise" to foster readiness in Europe, a senior U.S. commander in the region said.

"This exercise is part of preparedness," Lt. Gen. J. T. Thomson, commander of NATO Allied Land Command, said about the upcoming Defender-Europe 2020.

Thomson made his remarks Oct. 15 during a forum at the Association of the U.S. Army’s Annual Meeting and Exposition, where panelists discussed the forthcoming exercise, the largest deployment of U.S.-based land forces to Europe in the last quarter-century.

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Army Offers Variety of Spouse Employment Resources

Army spouses looking for employment can face challenges—frequent moves and state licensing requirements, for example—but they have a community of resources and opportunities available to help, experts say.

“Family wellbeing is holistic and requires that we acknowledge and support every member of the family when needed and reach out to others as we can,” Lee Kelly, director of military community support programs in the Defense Department’s Office of Military Community and Family Policy, said Oct. 15 during the Association of the U.S. Army’s Annual Meeting and Symposium.

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McConville: People are Centerpiece of the Army

The Army is open for business, and it wants good ideas.

As the Army pushes ahead with its modernization efforts, people – soldiers, Army civilians, veterans, retirees and family members – will always remain the No. 1 priority, Army Chief of Staff Gen. James McConville said Oct. 15.

In his first Eisenhower Luncheon address as the Army’s top general, McConville previewed the upcoming Army people strategy and reinforced the importance of matching the right person to the right job and building cohesive teams across the force.

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Army Seeks Ideas from Industry, Partners

The Army is open for business, and it wants good ideas.

Panelists delivered that message Oct. 14 during an appearance at the Army's Warriors Corner booth at the Association of the U.S. Army’s Annual Meeting and Exposition.

"We don't have all the good ideas," said Brig Gen. John Rafferty, director of the Long-Range Precision Fires Cross-Functional Team. As such, he said, the Army is looking for innovators. That in itself is a challenge, one panelist said.

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Army Leaders Seek Help Keeping Momentum

The Army needs continued, bipartisan help to maintain the aggressive pace of improvements across the force, its leaders said Oct 15.

Speaking at a congressional breakfast during the Association of the U.S. Army’s Annual Meeting and Exposition, Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy and Chief of Staff Gen. James McConville said the Army is on a solid path of both increasing readiness and making leaps forward in modernization, but these efforts could dry up without continued financial and policy support.

“We need your help,” McCarthy said, noting that the Army requires stable budgets, but it faces uncertainty because a temporary government funding bill expires in six weeks.

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Army to Unveil New Marketing Campaign

The U.S. Army Rapid Capabilities and Critical Technologies Office utilized the AUSA 2019 Warriors Corner to provide an update on the introduction of new hypersonic and directed energy technologies to the force.

“The purpose of the [RCCTO] is to move stuff from the science and technology community into prototypes at the unit of action level,” explained Lt. Gen. L. Neil Thurgood, director of hypersonics, directed energy, space and rapid acquisition at the RCCTO. “We take stuff that is done or near done, produce a prototype and give it to a combat unit, so they can try it in the field.”

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Army to Unveil New Marketing Campaign

A new marketing campaign and a focused effort to bring in the right soldiers by getting the right recruiters on the job are part of the Army’s multi-pronged effort to make people a top priority.

What’s Your Warrior? is the question posed by a new marketing strategy designed to use the concept of talent management to reach people who are unaware of what the Army does and what careers it offers.

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Artificial Intelligence Key to Army Modernization

Artificial intelligence has become a common part of everyday life, and it will continue to be an enabling technology for each of the Army’s modernization priorities, the director of the Army’s Artificial Intelligence Task Force said during an Oct. 14 Warriors Corner session at the Association of the U.S. Army’s Annual Meeting and Exposition.

“I walked into the AUSA [annual meeting] one year ago, and what did I see? AI was everywhere. It’s become a pervasive part of our civilian society,” Brig. Gen. Matthew Easley said.

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Garrett: Army Must Modernize or Risk Irrelevance

The Army is ready to fight today, but it will not be ready for the future fight unless it modernizes the force, Gen. Michael Garrett, commanding general of U.S. Army Forces Command, said Oct. 14.

After seven months in his job of ensuring the Army is tactically ready, Garrett said, the “Army is ready to fight and win today … but the challenge is, how do we maintain sufficient amounts of readiness to meet our national defense strategy requirements?”

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McConville’s Eisenhower Address is Tuesday’s Highlight

The highlight of Day Two of AUSA 2019 is the Eisenhower Luncheon address by new Army Chief of Staff Gen. James McConville, but this will be a day with a wide variety of events for soldiers, Army civilians and family members.

The day will conclude with an evening concert by Gary Sinise & the Lt. Dan Band that is open to anyone registered for the annual meeting.

On-site registration opens at 7 a.m.

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Monday, October 14th

Army Refocuses Soldier and Family Readiness Groups

The Army recognizes the need for community support as it shifts away from spouse-only programs to all-encompassing soldier and family readiness groups.

“Social support and connectedness are critical for family readiness and we recognize that,” Col. Steve Lewis, chief of the family programs branch in the Office of the Assistant Chief of Staff for Installation Management, said while speaking at a military family forum at the Association of the U.S. Army’s Annual Meeting and Exposition on Oct. 14.

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AUSA Develops Strategic Plan for 2025

The Association of the U.S. Army is focusing its efforts on a strategic plan with an eye toward 2025, retired Gen. Carter Ham, AUSA’s president and CEO, told the association’s chapter leaders.

The strategic plan, which is a directive from AUSA’s Council of Trustees, aligns with a significant year for both the Army and the association – the Army’s 250th birthday and AUSA’s 75th anniversary, Ham said.

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Soldiers Remain Focus of Modernization Efforts

The Army’s Next Generation Combat Vehicle team utilized the AUSA 2019 Warriors Corner Oct. 14 to highlight the changing Army modernization environment and how that translates to the accelerated delivery of warfighter capabilities.

Maj. Gen. Cedric Wins, commanding general of Combat Capabilities Development Command, opened the presentation by emphasizing many of the changes of the last few years, and how those changes have created a type of synergy across the vehicle modernization enterprise.

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Army Leaders Benefit from Engaging on Social Media

Senior military leaders would do well to engage on social media, because that's where their troops are, media-savvy panelists said to an audience that live-tweeted their comments.

The comments and live-tweets occurred Oct. 14 during a forum at the Association of the U.S. Army’s Annual Meeting and Exposition.

Steve Leonard, who created the popular Doctrine Man comic strip, echoed a social media post from Gen. Robert Abrams, commander of U.S. Forces Korea, who wrote last week that senior leaders need to "get on the bus" of social media.

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Army Names Soldier, NCO of the Year

The Army announced the winners of the 18th annual Best Warrior Competition during an Oct. 14 luncheon at the Association of the U.S. Army’s Annual Meeting and Exposition in Washington, D.C.

The 2019 Soldier of the Year is Spc. David Chambers, representing U.S. Army Forces Command, and the Noncommissioned Officer of the Year is Staff Sgt. Dakota Bowen from U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command.

“You represent what we want in our soldiers: physically fit, dedicated professionals,” said keynote speaker Gen. Joseph Martin, the Army’s vice chief of staff.

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Army Changing How It Recruits, Trains for Future Fight

The Army is changing the way it recruits, develops and trains soldiers—and it’s looking to Generation Z for how to do it, a senior leader said.

“We have to train leaders to fight and win in this environment,” Col. Timothy Hummel, director of G-2 Operational Environment at the U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command, said while speaking at the Association of the U.S. Army’s Annual Meeting and Exposition on Oct. 14.

The Army recognizes the need to change as it focuses on developing its future leaders, some of whom are coming into the Army now, he said.

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SecArmy McCarthy Kicks Off AUSA 2019

The first day of the largest annual land warfare exposition in North America features a major address from new Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy, the unveiling of the Army’s Soldier and NCO of the Year, a key presentation from the service’s new senior enlisted leader, and much more.

The 65th Annual Meeting and Exposition of the Association of the U.S. Army is being held for the 17th time at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington, D.C. A crowd of more than 30,000 is expected to attend the three-day event Oct. 14-16, featuring more than 650 exhibits spread over more than 300,000 square feet of space, including eight international pavilions.

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McCarthy Encourages Candor from Soldiers

TArmy Secretary Ryan McCarthy said he welcomes candid opinions from soldiers, including those who disagree with national policy decisions, such as the withdrawal of U.S. troops from northern Syria.

In remarks at a press conference Oct. 14 with McCarthy and Army Chief of Staff Gen. James McConville during the Association of the U.S. Army’s Annual Meeting and Exposition, McCarthy said that “more and more soldiers are very candid about how they feel.”

“I like candor, it’s important to have that. You obviously don’t want to have disobedience, but they have to have opinions,” McCarthy said.

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Discussion of Army Museum Precedes AUSA 2019

The role of the National Museum of the U.S. Army in building support for Army programs and renewed respect for soldiers was a major part of the discussion as a small group of U.S. and foreign military representatives and defense industry executives took part in a senior executive staff ride.

The event was arranged as part of the buildup to the Association of the U.S. Army’s Annual Meeting and Exposition, which begins Oct. 14.

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McCarthy: Army Must Invest in Modernization

With a dire warning that America’s adversaries are investing billions in new weapons and methods, Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy said the Army must continue its push to increase readiness, improve its strategic mobility and focus on modernization or risk losing the next war.

“Russia and especially China are on a trajectory to surpass U.S. capability,” McCarthy said. “Both seek to modernize, to man and gain overmatch against the U.S. and our allies. Either you have a sense of urgency today or a sense of regret tomorrow.”

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McCarthy Reinforces Modernization, Readiness Priorities

During a ceremonial swearing-in ceremony on the steps of the Pentagon, Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy pledged to be the secretary soldiers deserve and continue to push the service to modernize and remain the most lethal fighting force in the world.

“We must maintain a sense of urgency, negate bureaucracy and dogma and remain steadfast in our priorities of readiness, modernization and reform,” McCarthy said during the Oct. 10 ceremony hosted by Defense Secretary Mark Esper.

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SMA Emphasizes Team, Fundamentals at AUSA 2019

From fitness and nutrition to mastering the fundamentals, Sgt. Maj. of the Army Michael Grinston wants to empower noncommissioned officers to take care of their soldiers and build cohesive teams.

In remarks Oct. 14 during a forum at the Association of the U.S. Army’s Annual Meeting and Exposition, Grinston called on the audience, many of them NCOs, to focus on an initiative he calls "This is My Squad".

“This is my squad, I don’t let anything happen to my squad,” Grinston said. “It shows ownership, something you’re proud of. This is going to be the driving force.”

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Pre-Event

Time is running out to register online for this year’s Association of the U.S. Army Annual Meeting and Exposition.

The latest entrants in the technology search competition sponsored by the Army to help advance its modernization priorities will demonstrate their innovations during the upcoming Association of the U.S. Army Annual Meeting and Exposition.

The 2019 Association of the U.S. Army Annual Meeting and Exposition will feature several professional development events for Department of the Army civilians, who, as Army Chief of Staff Gen. James McConville has said, are vital members of the total force.

The seventh annual Warriors to the Workforce (Washington D.C.) job fair will take place during the Association of the U.S. Army’s Annual Meeting this fall.

Hosted by the American Freedom Foundation, the event will be held Oct. 14-16 at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington, D.C.

“America’s Army: Ready Now, Investing in the Future” is the theme of the 2019 Association of the U.S. Army Annual Meeting and Exposition.

That is a message reflecting that readiness remains the Army’s top priority, but modernization and reform follow closely behind.