FORT LEONARD WOOD, Mo. — During a visit to Fort Leonard Wood Monday, Lt. Gen. James Rainey, the commanding general of the U.S. Army Combined Arms Center at Fort Leavenworth, Kan., took time to offer advice and answer questions via leader professional development events for command teams and students here.
Rainey stressed being in the Army is not a job.
“What we do is a profession,” he said. “We don’t work at the Army … we are the Army.”
Rainey made the point that military service is a 24/7, 365-days-a-year responsibility.
“When you look at some of the challenges we’re facing, a big part of that — to me — is men and women show up to work or (physical training), they’ll give you everything they’ve got, then you release them and they don’t feel like they’re still in the Army,” he said.
To be a professional, Rainey said there are three requirements: character, competence and commitment. Having “accountability mechanisms” in place can aid service members in ensuring they remain in line with the moral principles that guide the profession of arms.
“Don’t ever take your eye off of it,” he said. “The ‘three Cs’ are the responsibilities of everybody.”
One of the attendees, 795th Military Police Battalion Command Sgt. Maj. Michael Moore, said professional development opportunities with senior military leaders are “invaluable.”
“Having a three-star general come down to brigade and battalion commanders and command sergeants major and sharing his 34 years of experience — he’s sharing that with us and we’re going to go share that with our subordinates,” he said.
Moore added the knowledge and advice learned at events like these filters down through the ranks “to the drill sergeants who then feed it to the trainees.”
“Once we feed it to them, it’s like a tree,” he said. “It’s going to grow.”
After the command team LPD, Rainey presented his commander’s coin to three Soldiers and three civilians for “extraordinary professionalism and dedication.”