WASHINGTON (Sept. 8, 2014) -- Sexual Harassment/Assault Response and Prevention, or SHARP, remains a top priority for both the Secretary of the Army and the Chief of Staff of the Army. Army leaders remain committed to inculcating a culture of respect, prevention and action with regard to sexual harassment and assault prevention and response as part of the Army profession and ethic.

The Chief of Staff of the Army directed analysis of a centralized SHARP Academy to institutionalize the training, competence, and professionalism of our Sexual Assault Response Coordinators, Victim Advocates, and SHARP Program Managers. In keeping with our enduring commitment to SHARP, and the inherent responsibility of our leaders to create and maintain a climate of respect, prevention, and care and compassion for survivors, the Secretary of the Army has directed that this school will be established at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, the nexus of commander and leader development for the Army. This academy will provide world class instruction to foster a climate that not only prevents assaults but instills response principles as habitual and inherent characteristics across the force.

Senior leader involvement and emphasis on changing the culture at the commander level are the best drivers of culture change. Co-location of the SHARP Academy among leaders, both military and civilian, attending the Command and General Staff College, the Battalion and Brigade Commander and Command Sergeant Major Pre-Command Courses, and the Army Management Staff College create a dynamic and powerful pillar to drive culture change. The Center for Army Lessons Learned and Mission Command Center of Excellence, both located at Fort Leavenworth, will serve as outstanding resources for the SHARP Academy.

Finally, routine senior leader engagements from across the Army community will reinforce education and training and deliver the guidance, emphasis, and oversight needed to influence attitudes and behaviors of students and leaders. Commander emphasis is key and leadership makes all the difference.

The SHARP Academy will be administered by U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command, known as TRADOC, a four-star general officer command, and will report directly to the Combined Arms Center, a three-star general officer command. The SHARP Academy will commence the first class at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, Oct. 6, 2014.

Point of contact for this notification is Maj. Harold Huff, TRADOC Public Affairs, at 757-501-5873.