10th Mountain Division (LI) hosted the Northeast Regional Partnership Conference, Jan. 15-16, 2020, at Fort Drum, N.Y.
The purpose of the conference was to promote former Chief of Staff of the Army Gen. Mark A. Milley's vision of a total Army conference, where Active Duty, National Guard, and Reserve units all work together to mutually benefit one another.
Col. Michael Wiser, the 10th Mountain Division (LI) liaison officer to the Reserve and National Guard, thinks the conference is important not just for the division, but for all the participating units.
"The meeting marks not just a tactical partnership of brigade to brigade, battalion to battalion, and a promise to train together and work on small unit tactics, but also works the bigger strategic effects," said Wiser. "Our division then becomes more capable because we know how to employ enabler brigades, and they know how to work under our standard operating procedures. If we were to fight in a large scale operation someplace in the world, we are more ready to do that from the start because we are integrated."
In addition to 10th Mountain Division (LI) and its 1st Brigade Combat Team, 2nd BCT, 3rd BCT, 10th Mountain Combat Aviation Brigade, and 10th Sustainment Brigade, participating units included 42nd Infantry Division, N.Y., 42nd CAB, N.Y., 28th Expeditionary CAB, Pa., 369th Sustainment Brigade, N.Y., 371st Sustainment Brigade, Ohio, 55th Sustainment Brigade, Va., 77th Sustainment Brigade, N.J., 26th Maneuver Enhancement Brigade, Mass., 302nd MEB, Mass., 404 MEB, Ill., 197th Field Artillery Brigade, N.H., 27th Infantry BCT, N.Y., 44th IBCT, N.J, 2nd BCT, 28th Infantry Division, Pa., 86th IBCT, Vt., and 256th IBCT, La.
Prior to the conference, units participated in a physical training session to show them how to prepare for the Army Combat Fitness Test at home. Events included deadlifts, leg tucks, eight-count pushups, power jumps, leg tuck and twists, bent leg raises, alternately staggered jump squats, forward lunges, and overhead press-ups.
During the conference, Soldiers from different units participated in intense discussions with one another about the effectiveness of the conference, and how to best improve the conferences and partnerships in the future.
Col. Howard Lloyd, brigade commander of the 28th Expeditionary CAB, thinks the conference was a great success.
"The conference was beneficial in the sense that this is the only time we get to properly network with our counterparts," said Lloyd. "We also get to learn what they have planned for the upcoming two or three years, and we get to integrate our staff and key leaders into their program."
Overall, the conference was a great stepping stone to improve the future NERP conferences, said Maj. Kenneth Moran, an exchange officer from the 10th Mountain Division to the 86th IBCT, who now works on the brigade operations staff.
"Everything requires muscle memory," said Moran. "If you build it into your psyche that we are going to do these conferences annually or biannually, just developing the muscle memory is going to make it easier in the future. I think we have the right people here that will commit themselves to these conferences with more rigor and more frequency."