JOINT BASE MCGUIRE-DIX-LAKEHURST, N.J. -- The U.S. Army Reserve's 99th Regional Support Command hosted the U.S. Forces Command Commander's Dialogue May 4 at the RSC's headquarters here.

The purpose of the dialogue was to conduct informal and candid discussions with Army Reserve senior leaders on mission readiness challenges, including best practices.

"You have a lot of people doing a lot of great things in support of building and sustaining readiness across the U.S. Army Reserve," said Gen. Robert B. Abrams, FORSCOM commanding general.

The idea to hold dialogue events between FORSCOM and Army Reserve commands throughout the nation grew out of a mission training brief held several months ago at Army Reserve headquarters on Fort Bragg, North Carolina. In an effort to gain additional knowledge about the Army Reserve's units and capabilities, meetings with Army Reserve leaders were integrated into already existing regional huddles that FORSCOM was holding with National Guard leaders.

"I want to walk out of here with a much better understanding of what it is you do, and I want to share some guidance as to what your role is, from my perspective, in building and sustaining readiness for the Force," Abrams said.

Joining Abrams for the Dialogue were Lt. Gen. Michael S. Tucker, First U.S. Army commanding general; Lt. Gen. Jeffrey W. Talley, chief of Army Reserve and U.S. Army Reserve Command commanding general; and leaders from the Army Reserve's 99th RSC, 75th Training Command and 1st Mission Support Command.

"If Army Reserve capabilities are not prepared and ready for operational use, then the Army will fail their missions -- that's what makes readiness so critical," Talley said.

The Army Reserve provides trained, equipped and ready Soldiers, leaders and units to meet America's requirements at home and abroad, and has been an essential part of the Total Army and Joint Force since its creation by congress 108 years ago.

The Army Reserve's regional support commands are non-standard, geographically dispersed "virtual installations" that handle day-to-day operations of facilities and provide services and support to Soldiers, families, civilians and units in their area so commanders can focus on unit and Soldier readiness.

"We do not have regional support commands in the active component, nor do we have them in (the National Guard), we only have them in the Army Reserve, so it's important for people to understand what they are," said Maj. Gen. Margaret W. Boor, 99th RSC commanding general.

"An RSC is not an Army Reserve unit that is preparing to mobilize and deploy, it is not an Army Reserve unit that is preparing to conduct training, and it is not an Army Reserve unit that is preparing an exercise," Boor explained. "We do our mission 365 days a year with a predominately civilian workforce that provides logistics, infrastructure and human resources support to Soldiers, civilians, families, veterans and retirees."

Boor also noted the importance of the Army Reserve's unique capabilities to the Total Force.

"We are different from the active component in the types of units and capabilities we have, some of which are only in the Army Reserve because we compliment what the active component does," Boor said. "The value is in continuing to educate and inform these capabilities in the Army Reserve that aren't resident anywhere else so that people have an understanding of how they contribute to readiness.

"At the end of the day, it's the same question that we're all asking ourselves right now: Is what we're doing contributing to building and sustaining readiness?" she added.

The 99th RSC will continue to contribute to events that promote the Army Reserve and its role as a life-saving, life-sustaining force for the Total Army and the nation.