By CourtesyJuly 23, 2018
AMCOM Public & Congressional Affairs
Command Sgt. Maj. Mike Dove assumed the responsibilities as the eighth Command Sergeant Major of the U.S. Army Aviation and Missile Command, July 3.
His 24-year career as a noncommissioned officer in the Army has taken him and his family around the world and across the country. As a career aviation NCO this is not his first trip to Alabama, but it is the first time he has been stationed in Huntsville.
With just under a month in the position at AMCOM, he is taking a proactive approach to learning the organization and putting his finger on the pulse of the mission.
"I'm just now getting to know the organization," Dove said. "It is very large and I still have a few more organizations and directorates that I need to see before I decide on any one particular area that I will engage in first. However, I will most likely focus on areas that have a direct impact on enlisted Soldiers and NCOs, particularly in Aviation or Missile systems. One of those areas could possibly be Condition Based Maintenance." CBM+ is a predictive maintenance capability much like the on-board diagnostic system in cars. It can help identify components that are going bad in Aviation and Missile systems before they fail, help reduce maintenance down-time, and allow for timelier forecasting for repair parts requirements.
Dove previously served as the Directorate Sergeant Major for the Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff, G-3/5/7, DAMO-AV at the Pentagon, so he is familiar with AMCOM and its mission sets. He admits that the missile side of the house will be an area of professional development for him. In addition, he's counting on his counterparts at other Army Materiel Command major subordinate commands to help guide his initial path into Army logistics, which he called "the heart of this organization" during his change of responsibility remarks.
"I still need to learn about AMC's organization and what my peers are doing," he said. "I want to understand how what they are doing ties into what we are doing so that I can have a better understanding of the entire organization."
As the newest member of the AMCOM command team, Dove will be working with a predominantly civilian workforce. He said the thing he loves about being a Soldier in the Army is the camaraderie, and he senses that same environment in the AMCOM civilian workforce.
"Everybody I've met is very excited about and loves their jobs," he said. "They obviously want to do the right thing for the Soldiers and for the Army," he said. "It's very refreshing to see that when I talk to the people who work here. And, it's helpful to know that they put that kind of dedication into their work."
Dove said that work ethic gives him a level of comfort that he can relay to the Soldiers out in the field when he visits the Combat Aviation and the Air Defense Artillery brigades.
Dove sees the upcoming annual AMCOM 101 for Aviation and AMCOM 101 for Missiles events as his first real touchpoints with the Soldiers that AMCOM directly impacts. Those sessions will be opportunities to get direct feedback from the individual Soldiers and unit command teams. He will use that feedback to determine specifically what they need and what AMCOM can provide both at their home stations and when they are deployed.
Every Soldier needs a strong support team at work and at home. Dove has that with his wife, Laurie, and daughter, Allison. He and Laurie have been married nearly 28 years. They were married for four years before he enlisted.
"My wife Laurie is my best friend and confidant," he said. "She keeps me grounded and humble. She was by my side long before I entered the Army. And, by the grace of God, we were blessed with a strong marriage and family."
For Dove, family time is sacred, especially when it comes to spending time with his daughter. Visiting museums, traveling, and spending a day on the lake are just some of the family activities they enjoy.
"I was talking to my daughter the other day about going fishing," Dove said. "She likes to fish, and we are looking for a place to go." He's hoping the AMCOM team will offer some suggestions on good fishing spots.
Dove credits his leadership style to a composition of the leaders he met throughout his Army career. His role models include the very first NCO he worked for in Korea, several platoon sergeants, first sergeants, sergeants major, officers and warrant officers, as well as many civilians and retirees with whom he's served during his career.
Prior to joining the Army, a Marine Corps Reserve officer with whom Dove played softball with on his church's team told him to "be true to your band of brothers." At the time, Dove didn't know what that meant, but it has been in the back of his mind throughout his career.
He believes in treating people with dignity and respect and tries to live by the golden rule of treating others the way he would want to be treated.
"Some leaders I've studied over the years say 'train people to leave, but treat them so they will stay'," he said. "All Soldiers will leave at some point, either at their end of term of service or retirement. Obviously we want the best Soldiers to stay in the Army and reenlist. Those who don't reenlist, we want them to be advocates of the Army and positive role models for society. After all, they are Soldiers for life and the Army has a very good reputation of developing leaders. That philosophy extends to our civilian workforce, as well."
While the AMCOM mission is a new role for Dove, he is already well acquainted with AMCOM Commander, Maj. Gen. Doug Gabram. As the Sergeant Major for the Department of the Army G-3/5/7 Aviation directorate, Dove had multiple opportunities to engage with Gabram and other leaders of the Aviation community.
"I heard nothing but great stories about [Maj. Gen. Gabram], said Dove. "Nothing but great stuff about his leadership and how good he is. He has a solid reputation and everyone that I've talked to has told me that I am going to love working with him. I'm looking forward to the time we are going to get to spend together. I think it's going to be very positive."