Sullivan Receives Marshall Award at AUSA 2016

he 2016 Annual Meeting and Exposition of the Association of the U.S. Army concluded Oct. 5 with retired Army Gen. Gordon R. Sullivan accepting the association’s highest award.

The former AUSA president and CEO and former Army chief of staff received the General George Catlett Marshall Medal for a lifetime of selfless service to the U.S. Army and the nation.

The award is presented annually by AUSA’s Council of Trustees. Council Chairman Nicholas D. Chabraja said he was “especially proud to honor one of our own,” and called Sullivan “one of the Army’s most revered generals.”

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Civilian Workers Honored at Luncheon

The civilian workers of the Department of the Army were lauded at a luncheon on the third and final day of the Association of the U.S. Army’s 2016 Annual Meeting and Exposition.

“AUSA recognizes Army civilians are an integral part of the Army team, ensuring the readiness and well-being of soldiers and their families,” said John B. Nerger of the AUSA Advisory Board of Directors. “Army civilians provide unmatched expertise, stability and continuity to our force, qualities we depend upon for the Army to succeed at any mission it’s given.”

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Army Role in Homeland Defense Is Rising

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Robert Salesses, Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Homeland Defense Integration and Defense Support of Civil Authorities

From the rising nuclear threat posed by North Korea to Russian cyber hacks, from migration to terrorism to climate change, the U.S. is no longer shielded from trouble, as it once was, by two oceans and long distances.

“The homeland is less and less a sanctuary,” said Robert Salesses, deputy assistant secretary of defense for homeland defense integration and defense support of civil authorities. Thus, a role the military has always had but has been long overshadowed is re-emerging: homeland defense.

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Dunford: Challenges Require More Than ‘Buying New Hardware’

The nation is facing a complex security environment driven by four nation state challenges and the threat of violent extremism, and that has major implications for the Army and the joint force, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff said Wednesday. Marine Corps Gen. Joseph F. Dunford Jr. spoke during the sustaining member luncheon at the Association of the U.S. Army’s 2016 Annual Meeting and Exposition.

“We need a balanced portfolio of capabilities” able to deal with a range of adversaries across the full range of military conflict, Dunford said

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Asia ‘Most Critical Region’ for U.S., Policy Experts Say

Russia remains a threat but over the next 15 years, the Asia-Pacific will be the most critical region for the U.S. military, a panel of defense policy experts said Wednesday at the Association of the U.S. Army 2016 Annual Meeting and Exposition.

“Asia is the most critical region going to 2030 and beyond, and China’s rise cannot be paused,” said Kathleen Hicks, a senior vice president and director of the international security program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

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Army Leaders: Readiness Starts With Supporting Soldiers, Families

On the third and final day of the Association of the U.S. Army’s 2016 Annual Meeting and Exposition that showcased a dizzying array of cutting-edge warfighting hardware and technology, Army leaders hosted a town hall meeting that showcased the service’s most valuable assets: soldiers and their families.

Soldier and family support programs “have a direct impact on the readiness of our Army,” Secretary of the Army Eric Fanning told an audience of several hundred people during the third of three military family forums.

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Grim Vision of Future Warfare is Detailed

The Army’s senior leaders are looking at the future, and a lot of what they’re seeing is pretty scary.

Adversaries posing an “existential threat” could emerge within a decade, meaning an unfriendly nation or some other enemy could threaten the survival of the U.S.  

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Senior NCOs Discuss Readiness Challenges

Senior noncommissioned officers provided a rundown of current soldier readiness, and the challenges they are facing, during a contemporary military forum at the Association of the U.S. Army’s Annual Meeting and Exposition.

“Soldier readiness is Army readiness, and every member of the team needs to be experts in their position,” said Command Sgt. Maj. Scott Schroeder, U.S. Army Forces Command (FORSCOM).

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‘Hacksaw Ridge’ Wows Attendees at AUSA Meeting

A pre-release screening of a dramatic movie about a World War II medic who received the Medal of Honor for his courageous actions in Okinawa was a popular addition to the Association of the U.S. Army's 2016 Annual Meeting and Exposition. 

About 275 people attended the showing of Hacksaw Ridge, a film about the first conscientious objector to receive the nation's highest award for valor. The screening was hosted by AUSA and We Are the Mighty, and was provided by U.S. film distributor Lionsgate. 

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Busy Final Day for AUSA 2016

The final day of the 2016 Annual Meeting and Exposition of the Association of the U.S. Army begins with a town hall meeting on military family issues and culminates with the George Catlett Marshall Memorial Dinner.

In the middle, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staffs, Marine Corps Gen. Joseph F. Dunford Jr., speaks at an invitation-only lunch for AUSA sustaining members; Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh C. Johnson speaks at a forum on homeland security, with separate discussions on responding to natural disasters and acquisition; and contemporary military forums hosted by AUSA’s Institute of Land Warfare focus on preparing for 2030 threats, cyberwar and Pacific readiness.

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Army Chief: Future War Is ‘Almost Guaranteed’

In a global environment of rapid technological, societal and demographic changes, the U.S. Army’s dominance is being challenged by a belligerent Russia and rising China, and war between nation states at some point in the future “is almost guaranteed,” said Army Chief of Staff Gen. Mark A. Milley.

Milley, who assumed duties as the 39th chief of staff in August 2015, spoke during the Dwight David Eisenhower Luncheon Tuesday at the Association of the U.S. Army’s Annual Meeting and Exposition.

To meet future challenges, Milley said, the Army must rapidly adapt; reform its acquisition process to speed new technologies to the field; build future leaders who can operate on nonlinear battlefields without reliable communications with higher command; and make wise and ethnical decisions.

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U.S. Looks to ‘Multidomain’ to Maintain Dominance

Since the Cold War ended almost 30 years ago, the U.S. military has been able to operate around the globe largely at will. In war, it has enjoyed air superiority; its ships are unchallenged; and its land forces have been technically and professionally superior.

But all that is changing, said Deputy Defense Secretary Robert Work at the Association of the U.S. Army’s Annual Meeting and Exposition. His comments came during an Institute of Land Warfare contemporary military forum.

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Fanning Warns of Harm from Short-Term Funding

The Army needs help from congressional staff members to explain the short-term damage that results from operating with only temporary spending, Secretary of the Army Eric Fanning said Tuesday, Oct. 4, in a breakfast meeting at the Association of the U.S. Army’s 2016 Annual Meeting and Exposition.

Attended by more than 300 members of House and Senate personnel and committee staff members, the annual congressional breakfast is also attended by the Army’s senior military and civilian leaders.

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Hodges: In Europe, ‘It’s All About Deterrence Again’

After years of assurance aimed at maintaining European confidence in the U.S., “it’s all about deterrence” again, said Lt. Gen. Ben Hodges, commanding general of U.S. Army Europe/Seventh Army.

Hodges was the lead speaker at “An Ocean Closer: Synchronizing Actions and Words from the Baltic to the Black Sea,” an Institute of Land Warfare forum during the Association of the U.S. Army’s 2016 Annual Meeting and Exposition.

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Slow Acquisition Process Hindering Army

The Army needs to prepare forces for the future at time when technology and potential adversaries are changing rapidly while the defense procurement process is historically slow, a panel of defense and private sector officials said at a contemporary military forum at the Association of the U.S. Army’s Annual Meeting and Exposition.

That conflict between the need for rapid change and a cumbersome acquisition process is aggravated by the current budget environment in which funding levels are inadequate and unpredictable, the panelists said.

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Day Two of AUSA 2016 Focuses on Readiness, Strategic Planning

The second day of AUSA’s Annual Meeting and Exposition includes a look at Army readiness challenges and strategic planning, with additional discussions focusing on warrant officers, NCOs, military families, the National Guard, the Army Reserve, the civilian workforce, and help for small businesses.

A pre-release screening of Hacksaw Ridge, a movie about a World War II conscientious objector who received the Medal of Honor, is scheduled for Tuesday evening. Details are available here: https://www.ausa.org/news/hacksaw-ridge-will-be-screened-during-ausa-2016

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Army Making Strides in Support for Kids

The Army has made significant progress in improving support for military children in the ongoing era of frequent deployments, experts said at the first of three military family forums at the 2016 Annual Meeting and Exposition of the Association of the U.S. Army.

“Military kids are dealing with a lot of stuff,” said Cherri Verschraegen, chief of Child, Youth and School (CYS) Services for the U.S. Army Installation Management Command. “That means they’re experienced in dealing with stuff. But it’s not enough for them to survive; we want them to thrive.”

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Army’s Top Warriors Announced

Spc. Robert Miller has been named the Army’s 2016 Soldier of the Year, and Sgt. 1st Class Joshua Moeller is the 2016 Noncommissioned Officer (NCO) of the Year. The two winners of the Army’s Best Warrior Competition were announced Monday at the Association of the U.S. Army’s Annual Meeting and Exposition.

Miller is an explosive ordnance disposal specialist with the 8th Military Police Brigade at Schofield Barracks, Hawaii. Moeller serves as a cavalry scout with the 108th Training Command, U.S. Army Reserve at San Diego.

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TRADOC Chief: ‘No Single Domain Can Dominate’

The commanding general of the U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command stressed the essential relationship between the Army and the companies that regularly support warfighters during Monday’s corporate member luncheon at the Association of the U.S. Army’s Annual Meeting and Exposition.

“The journey that is the United States Army is the journey of the United States itself,” Gen. David G. Perkins said. “We’re looking at the journey in ways that we haven’t done before, using the past for lessons learned and how those might affect the future. We’re looking at the future [as] informed by the past.”

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Fanning Stresses Funding Need for Global Commitments

If the nation wants the Army to do all of the things it is being called on to do today, “you have to pay for it,” Army Secretary Eric K. Fanning said Monday.

Addressing the opening ceremony of the Association of the U.S. Army’s Annual Meeting and Exposition, Fanning listed the vital missions the Army is conducting. He noted that because of the reduced defense budgets and the smallest force since World War II, “we’re stretched thin.”

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South Dakota, Minnesota National Guard Units Receive Awards

Support of Army operations in El Salvador and hometown infrastructure improvements earned honors for National Guard battalions from Minnesota and South Dakota, respectively, during a breakfast ceremony Monday at the Association of the U.S. Army’s Annual Meeting and Exposition. 

The Walter T. Kerwin Jr. Readiness Awards went to the 153rd Engineer Battalion of the South Dakota National Guard, Huron, and Forward Support Company of the 367th Engineer Battalion of the Minnesota National Guard, St. Joseph.

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AUSA President Meets With Chapter Leaders Ahead of Annual Meeting

The president and chief executive officer of the Association of the U.S. Army told more than 90 chapter leaders that “together, we’re going to get this thing done” in raising membership and better connecting with the Army to help get its story across to the American people.

Retired Gen. Carter F. Ham, speaking Sunday before the formal opening of AUSA’s 2016 Annual Meeting and Exposition in Washington, D.C., told the chapter presidents “the heart and soul of AUSA … resides in this room.”

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Opening Day at AUSA 2016 Features Big Events

Opening day of the Association of the U.S. Army’s Annual Meeting and Exposition includes major addresses by top Army leaders, announcements of the Soldier of the Year and NCO of the Year, and several professional development forums.

And like every day during the three-day event, the exhibit floor opens at 9 a.m. at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center with more than 600 displays in five halls.

In addition to Warrior’s Corner, a centrally located U.S. Army exhibit with regularly scheduled presentations, there are 10 international pavilions as well as pavilions dedicated to small business, veteran hiring and homeland security. Innovators Corner, where Army research will be on display, also starts its three-day schedule of presentations.

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‘Green Book’: Milley, Fanning Report on Status of Force

In the 2016-17 special Green Book edition of ARMY magazine, the Army’s top general says the force has made “real progress” improving readiness in the last year “but much remains to be done.”

Army Chief of Staff Gen. Mark A. Milley writes in his status report that readiness remains his top priority and the security challenges facing the Army “also have not changed.”

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Warfighting Assessment Talk at ‘Warriors Corner’

A discussion about why the Army Warfighting Assessment is such a critical part of Force 2025 planning is one of about 20 events set for Warriors Corner, the Army booth on the exhibit floor at the Association of the U.S. Army’s 2016 Annual Meeting and Exposition that will highlight key Army themes.

The Warfighting Assessment briefing will be given by Maj. Gen. Terrence J.  McKenrick, Brigade Modernization Command commanding general at the Training and Doctrine Command’s Army Capabilities Integration Center, and soon to become deputy commanding general of U.S. Army Central and the Third U.S. Army in Kuwait. McKenrick is one of the many top Army officials participating in the Annual Meeting, which begins Oct. 3 at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington, D.C.  Continue Reading

Schedule for Warriors Corner

AUSA 2016 Features Innovators Corner Presentation, Displays

Cutting-edge technology will be on display in the Innovators Corner pavilion at the Association of the U.S. Army’s Annual Meeting and Exposition.  

Thomas P. Russell, acting deputy Army secretary for research and technology, will open the exhibit, in Hall C of the convention center, at noon on Oct. 3. On Oct. 4 and 5, presentations begin about 9 a.m. and continue throughout the day.  Continue Reading

Weapons’ Modernization a Balancing Act

The weapons’ modernization balancing act required to take care of immediate tactical needs while also preparing for the future will be the topic of an Oct. 3 professional develop forum at the Association of the U.S. Army’s Annual Meeting and Exposition.  The 2 p.m. Contemporary Military Forum, hosted by AUSA’s Institute of Land Warfare, will include the views of top Army leaders and private industry, beginning with remarks by Katrina McFarland, the acting assistant secretary of the Army for acquisition, logistics and technology. She is a former Defense Acquisition University president who was a principal adviser to the secretary of defense on acquisition before moving to the Army post to replace Heidi Shyu, who retired in January. Continue Reading

Future Multidomain Battles Will Challenge Joint Force

Challenges facing the Army in multidomain battles of the future will be a topic at a professional development forum during the Association of the U.S. Army's Annual Meeting and Exposition in early October.

Two important speakers will start the discussion: Deputy Secretary of Defense Robert O. Work and Gen. David G. Perkins, commanding general of U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command. The discussion is part of a series of Contemporary Military Forums sponsored by AUSA's Institute of Land Warfare.

A panel discussion that follows will feature some military heavyweights: Gen. Robert B. Brown, commanding general of U.S. Army Pacific; Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. David L. Goldfein; and Marine Corps Commandant Gen. Robert B. Neller. Navy Adm. Harry B. Harris Jr., U.S. Pacific Command commander, is expected to take part via teleconference. Continue Reading

New Electric Vehicle Ready to Roar

In the latest chapter of its ongoing quest to put more purr and less growl in future utility vehicles, the Army will unveil a new electric vehicle powered by hydrogen fuel cells at the Association of the U.S. Army’s Annual Meeting and Exposition.

The as-yet unnamed vehicle, based on General Motors’ Chevy Colorado frame, has been under development for a year, with formal testing on tap for next year under the auspices of the project’s lead agency, the U.S. Army Tank Automotive Research, Development and Engineering Center in Warren, Mich. Continue Reading

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