By Mr. Dave Palmer (Red Cloud)May 19, 2013
Seven spouses of new 2nd Infantry Division company commanders and first sergeants attended a training program at the Camp Casey Community Activities Center May 15-17.
While Army Community Service has offered Family Readiness Group leader training for many years, the Command Leadership Spouse Seminar is designed to enhance the skills needed for the leadership roles these spouses frequently hold in the FRG. Lessons are taught by senior leadership spouses and community leaders.
According to 2nd Infantry Division Chief of Public Affairs Lt. Col. Joe Scrocca the program took shape last July and is held quarterly in conjunction with the Division's Company Commander and First Sergeant Course. Scrocca also gives a block of instruction on social media during the course.
"This is a great initiative," said Scrocca. "While we've provided commanders and first sergeants the tools they need to command for years, companies are led by command teams, and the role of our spouses is vital to ensuring our Soldiers and Families are taken care of here in Korea."
"You're going to be in the people business," said Col. Louis Rago, commander of the 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team. "Your role is to provide assistance and support to all the spouses."
The curriculum includes instruction in protocol, mentoring, conflict resolution and communication.
Command Sgt. Maj. Carl Ashmead, 1st ABCT offered this advice to the ladies, "you are a key conduit for information, another look for leadership, at how the spouses perceive what the command is doing."
Even if spouses aren't president of an FRG they can still find themselves in a leadership role within the community.
"You'll develop a synergy, that allows you to attack all types of problems," said Col. Tracy Banister, commander of the 210th Fires Brigade. "But, you don't have to go home and hold an FRG meeting every night."
Linda Cardon, wife of Maj. Gen. Edward Cardon, the commander of the 2nd Infantry Division welcomed the ladies to the seminar, participated in panel discussions and presented the spouses certificates of completion.
As part of the take away from the class, each participant received a tote bag full of information and, more importantly, the knowledge and confidence to serve as a valuable member of the command team during their time here in Korea.