When Sgt. Maj. of the Army Kenneth Preston has something to say, Soldiers listen. This was the case at Camp Arifjan, Kuwait when he spoke to a full house at the Zone 1 Chapel about programs and issues relating to Soldiers June 26.

With a full house, Preston spoke in depth about his views on Soldier fitness, the types of operations the Army is currently conducting, deployment planning and how to improve all of those aspects for deployed Soldiers.

Preston also spoke about how Active Duty Soldiers currently have just a year of dwell time between deployments and how it doesn't typically offer Soldiers the time necessary to compete for slots in schools and prepare for their next deployment.

"Soldiers that aren't deployed have more time and access to work on promotions," said Preston. "We want Soldiers that are leading troops during deployments to have the same opportunities."

After speaking to the Soldiers for nearly two hours, Preston fielded questions from the audience ranging from his views on the War on Terror to opportunities for other Soldiers to raise to the highest rank a noncommissioned officer can achieve.

"In my opinion, every Soldier should have the opportunity to become the sergeant major of the Army," said Preston.

At the end of his visit, Preston presented approximately 30 Soldiers from across Third Army and subordinate units with coins and took time to shake hands and offer his thanks to the Soldiers serving at Camp Arifjan.

"We have a purely volunteer force," said Preston. "You all should be very proud of who you are. You are the cream of our society."

Page last updated Fri July 22nd, 2011 at 12:16