FORT LEONARD WOOD, Mo. — Fort Leonard Wood senior leaders have a day of events planned for Wednesday, in celebration of the 105th anniversary of the Army’s Warrant Officer Corps.

U.S. Army Engineer School Regimental Chief Warrant Officer 5 Dean Registe, one of the lead organizers of the celebration, said the Army now, more than ever, recognizes the importance of warrant officers and their role in leveraging technology to help the Army in winning “our nation’s wars.”

“We’re investing now in more training; we’re investing now in selecting more candidates; we’re investing in retaining more warrant officers,” Registe said. “I think it’s a great time to be a warrant officer, especially in this day and age as technology flourishes.”

The celebration begins at 6 a.m., with a fun run on the Engineer Trail, Registe said. Participants are asked to meet in their graduating class shirts at the Morelli Heights parking lot across from the trail entrance. A group photo will follow the run.

“The photo is really great every year because you get to see all the different colored shirts from the different classes,” Registe said.

At 9 a.m., warrant officers from across the installation are invited to attend a professional development event in Lincoln Hall Auditorium, where Registe, along with U.S. Army Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear School Regimental Chief Warrant Officer 4 Humphrey Hills II and U.S. Army Military Police School Regimental Chief Warrant Officer 4 Angela Rulewich, will lead a discussion on Army modernization and the role of the warrant officer in the near future — the Army of 2030, and the shift to better prepare for what the Army calls large-scale combat operations.

Registe noted Fort Leonard Wood’s Maneuver Support Center of Excellence is currently training those junior warrant officers, who will one day “be in the driver’s seat, making decisions.”

“I think it’ll be a great conversation to give them a little glimpse of the future, and what we expect of them in the future,” Registe said, noting the role of the warrant officer in maneuver support is more important now with the shift to LSCO. “We’re going to be called on to do more, and we’re really going to have to be technical experts in what we do and the functions we support for the Army — whether it’s just straight maneuver, chemical defense, or security and law and order — it’s going to play a big role. I don’t think any other warfighting function can do what they do without us. We establish the foundation and base of how we fight, can we fight and where we fight.”

The celebration continues with a cake-cutting ceremony, tentatively set to begin at 2 p.m. in Hoge Hall.

“We’re excited to celebrate — we can’t wait to do the cake cutting and see the next tier of warrant officers that we’re going to bring into the future,” Registe said.

The Warrant Officer Corps traces its roots back to 1918, when Congress established the Army Mine Planter Service as part of the Coastal Artillery Corps. A total of 40 warrant officers served as masters, mates, chief engineers and assistant engineers on each mine-planting vessel. This is also when the official color of the Army warrant officer came to be brown, based on the color of the strands from the burlap bags the Mine Planter Service personnel wore as their insignia of rank.

More information about the Army Warrant Officer Corps is available here.