(Photo Credit: U.S. Army) VIEW ORIGINAL

The morning kicked off with a rowdy game of kickball in which female soldiers assembled ad hoc teams. This event allowed these women warriors to meet new

personnel and enhanced their communication skills during the 41st Field Artillery Brigade's quarterly Sisters-in-Arms mentorship event held at Tower Barracks on April 29, 2021

For the last two years, leaders of the 41st FAB have invested in this grass-roots initiative to facilitate inclusion of female service members concerns through open discussion to reduce conflict and increase performance across the team.

2nd Lt. Allison Johnson, the 41st FAB strength manager, enjoyed the non-traditional networking opportunity and teamwork. Johnson, whose team secured the win in the kickball event, said, “When we stopped talking, the other team started to score. So, we tightened up our communication.”

During the lunch hour, more than 40 women from across the brigade assembled in the 1st Battalion, 6th Field Artillery Battalion motor pool for food and fellowship. A group of volunteers transformed the maintenance bay from one of wrenches and exhaust, to a space where conversation could flourish and flower filled steins dotted the tables. The Brigade Command Sergeant Major, Command Sgt. Maj. Zoker, joined the lunch to demonstrate the Brigade’s support of the program and gain insight from the group’s discussion

This quarter’s mentorship focus was health of the force with an emphasis on matters unique to the female population. To enhance the dialogue, a panel of subject matter experts led by the Brigade’s Surgeon, Lt. Col. Benjamin Ingram, discussed programs and services available to the attendees. Following the formalities, the forum held a question-and-answer session where the Soldiers peppered the experts with a myriad of questions ranging from fertility treatments to physical training to family care plan and much more.

“The even was a tremendous opportunity to inform the community on available resources as well as gain insight on how to better serve the population we support,” said Ingram.

The candid conversation filled the lunch hour and left many participants excited for future Sisters-in-Arms mentorship events. One of the Brigade’s newest Soldiers, Pfc. Evelyn Acosta, a supply specialist, was encouraged to attend the event by her supervisor and friend.

“I was surprised to see how many women were in attendance,” said Acosta. “I was happy to meet new friends.”

Mentorship is an important part to developing as a professional and the women of the 41st Field Artillery Brigade are empowered through the unique networking and educational experience provided by the Sisters-in-arms mentorship events. The next meeting is scheduled for Aug. 5, 2021 and will focus on financial readiness.