FORT HUACHUCA, Ariz. – Preparing organizations for future success is something leaders are charged with every day. As the landscape of contingency operations changes, Army subject matter experts must come together to help their leaders ensure their units, and Soldiers, are ready to handle any mission, anywhere.
Warrant officers from across U.S. Army Network Enterprise Technology Command gathered at Greely Hall to attend the NETCOM Senior Warrant Officer Huddle July 11-13.
At the three-day event, warrant officers heard from NETCOM leaders, improved team cohesion and helped create a shared understanding among the cohort.
“The purpose of the summit is to educate, enlighten and inform the participants to achieve a common baseline and a deeper level of understanding,” said Chief Warrant Officer 5 Deshawn Bell, Command Chief Warrant Officer, NETCOM. “The warrant officers within the NETCOM Family must understand NETCOM’s overall operational and strategic mission, focus areas and how they apply to their respective organizations.”
Because of our nation’s recent time at war, the warfighter began to depend on outside entities such as field service representatives to fix issues with equipment or systems.
Ensuring warrant officers are properly utilized is something noncommissioned officers and commissioned officers alike should strive for.
“Soldiers are engrained now to rely on the expertise of the FSR,” said Command Sgt. Maj. Jason McCoy, NETCOM’s senior enlisted leader. “They don’t understand the true value of a warrant officer.”
Warrant officers are subject matter experts in one of 48 fields, and make up less than three percent of the Army. As technical advisors, trainers and leaders, the Warrant Officer Cohort will be crucial in shaping the Army of 2030.
“The cohort brings unique technical and tactical experiences,” said Chief Warrant Officer 5 Robert Hembrook, Command Chief Warrant Officer, Cyber Protection Brigade. “We sit at the nexus of many complicated issues as technical advisors and leaders.”
Once thought of as trainers, today’s warrant officers are considered experts, but the name technicality does not change the thing that best defines a warrant officer – trainer.
“You all are the smartest people in the room in your areas,” McCoy said. “Who better to teach a Soldier how to fix their own problems?”
As trainers and technical experts, being able to be face-to-face with other warrants from across the globe was an advantage the attendees could take back to their home stations to help benefit warrants, leaders and Soldiers.
“Leaders who share experiences gain a broader understanding of the challenges they face,” said Chief Warrant Officer 3 Carl Garrett, Regional Cyber Center - National Guard. “When younger warrants understand this approach, they are able to work together developing strategies for future resolutions.”
NETCOM is a two-star operational command with global responsibility that’s in competition, conflict and crisis every day. Being able to see the bigger picture during the event is something that will benefit each warrant's respective units for the foreseeable future.
“It’s not lost on me what NETCOM, roughly 16,000 people globally, do every day for the Army,” said NETCOM Commanding General, Christopher Eubank. “You live it every day. There’s not a day off for us folks who run the third largest network in the world.”
The relevance of the Army Warrant Officer Cohort has never been greater. This event helped highlight how the cohort will positively influence how future Army forces will prevent conflict, shape security environments and win our nation's wars.
“Warrant officers must be the drivers of technological development in the Army,” said Chief Warrant Officer 2 Jonathan Garwood, Regional Cyber Center – Korea. “Meetings like this get us all on the same page with the same priorities.”
With the success of this year’s meeting, the future looks even brighter for the NETCOM Warrant Officer Cohort.
“[They learned] to effectively advise and support their respective leaders' direction and goals to meet the overall NETCOM mission,” Bell explained. “In doing so, these warrant officer leaders [will] become integral and invaluable members of their respective organizations.”