FORT EUSTIS, Va (Aug. 31, 2010) - Standing room only was the order of the day at the Eustis Club as 7th Sustainment Brigade welcomed Command Sgt. Maj. Ronald Riling, U.S. Army Forces Command, command sergeant major, into their home Aug. 31 as part of a meet and mentor-themed tour geared toward introducing himself to all of FORSCOMs 587,000 active duty Soldiers.

Though the day was tightly scheduled with briefings, a luncheon and tour of the brigade's numerous water craft, Riling took time out of the jam-packed morning to address the Noncommissioned Officer Professional Development session.

"Nothing happens without a Noncommissioned Officer," said Riling, scanning the sea of faces of all ranks of NCO from across the brigade. You all (NCOs) can make a difference. We're a great Army now but we can be an even better Army. Let's get back to basics, teach our Soldiers how to do this stuff. Teach your Soldiers the basics of discipline, customs and courtesy and lead your Soldiers by example."

Throughout his address Riling emphasized the importance of Physical Training, military and civilian education and how sergeant's time training is not relegated to only one day of the week.

"Set the example," he said, "set the standard from the front for your Soldiers, and let me say this about sergeant's time; it can be done informally as well as formally and should be done every day."

He described the upcoming changes to the Period Of Instruction for the Warrior Leaders Course and emphasized the critical need for education stressing it is an individual responsibility.

"Educate yourself," said Riling, "if you're not signed up for college you're wrong. When you retire you'll have that education under your belt, think smart about your future."

After his address Riling spent time answering questions from NCOs in the crowd, offering insight into a variety of matters while at the same time sharing powerful stories used to prove powerful points on the role and responsibility each NCO has for his or her Soldiers.

After his address Riling recognized 15 of the brigade's exceptional Soldiers by presenting each of them his signature coin. He then posed alongside the brigade's Sergeant Audie Murphy Club members for a group photo, the sky-blue of the prestigious medal's neck ribbon offering a noticeable contrast to their Army Service Uniforms.

To the most senior NCO in the brigade, Command Sgt. Maj. Cedric Thomas, brigade command sergeant major, Riling's visit instilled a sense of pride.

"Today we had a chance to showcase the 7th Sustainment Brigade to a key player on our 'team of teams'," said Thomas, "a visit from the FORSCOM command sergeant major. It was an honor and a privilege and shows Soldiers that FORSCOM has genuine concern for their down-trace units at every level."


Story by Sgt. 1st Class Kelly Jo Bridgwater with photos by Staff Sgt. Alexander Burnett, 7th Sustainment Brigade public affairs. For queries, contact 7th Sustainment Brigade Public Affairs at: 757-878-5112 ext. 268. For high-resolution photos and stories by the 7th Sustainment Brigade, please contact the Digital Video and Imagery Distribution System by calling (678) 421-6612 or access them online at

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