FORT BENNING, Ga. -- Gen. Paul E. Funk II, commanding general U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command, led off the first day of the 2019 Maneuver Warfighter Conference by defining TRADOC's efforts to acquire and retain a fighting force, ready to outnumber and win against the nation's adversaries on any battlefield.Funk was the first of many speakers invited to this year's conference, themed "The Brigade Combat Team: Readying for Large Scale Combat Operations.""I want to recognize and thank you as leaders of the most respected profession in our great nation," Funk said. "Now more than ever is a time when our Army and country needs to stand strong. The ever changing nature of warfare, along with the quest to dominate the information space are key aspects of the importance of TRADOC's mission and priorities."TRADOC builds America's Army through recruiting, training and educating Soldiers, focusing constant improvement and change to ensure the Army can deter, fight and win on any battlefield now and into the future.Step one in that process is TRADOC's recruitment centers, responsible for transforming civilians into highly trained Soldiers. The people joining the Army today are top quality, according to Funk. Less than 2% of recruits require waivers to join and over 95% were high school graduates. The Army has a tremendous number of Soldiers who are college graduates, Funk said."We [TRADOC] have a very simple construct to a very complex problem: taking citizens, turning them into Soldiers and then providing them to the operational force," he said. "We're getting the right talent to join and giving them the best training. The force we bring to you is a quality force."They want to be challenged, they want you to lead them in the future," Funk continued. "They want to share in being a part of something greater than themselves."To see more photos of Day 1 of the Conference, visit watch the video, visit Fort Benning news is available online at