Iron sharpens iron and in June the company commanders and station commanders of the Jacksonville Recruiting Battalion took their weapons to the field during its semi-annual Station Commander Training and Team Building event to sharpen their professional recruiting skills. The three-day event took place in downtown Jacksonville along the south bank of the St. John’s River and included leaders from Jacksonville, Gainesville, Savannah, Valdosta, Warner Robins and Charleston companies. Highlighting the Year of the Station Commander, the intent of Lt. Col. Daniel E. O'Grady, battalion commander and CSM Gary R. Stiteler, Jr., was to focus on NCO professional development, team building through various physical fitness challenges and review of recruiting doctrine. CSM Stiteler said the meeting was the perfect environment for leaders to fine-tune their craft, share best practices and recognize peers.

“Just like Soldiers in the field must maintain their Warrior Tasks and Battle Drills, Soldiers on recruiting duty have the same requirement in terms of knowledge of processing applicants, station administration and MEPS procedures. The battalion commander and I want to ensure that the battalion’s leaders are battle ready in the recruiting arena,” said Stiteler.

Each morning of the event team building was the focus beginning with rigorous physical fitness and competition that included a three-mile relay along the St. John’s River, a one-mile H-3 push, tug-of-war, 10 minutes of pull-ups, burpees and the water carry. Each day was rounded out with professional development training that included SHARP and Resiliency training and NCOER management. The highlight of the gathering was the inaugural Critical Skills Assessment Test (CSAT) tournament pitting each company against one another with knowledge-based questions and answers.

In true tournament fashion, trophies were awarded to Warner Robins company for winning the physical fitness challenge and to Gainesville company for scoring first place in the CSAT competition. Presentations were made by MSgt. M. Smith, senior guidance counselor, Mr. L. Castille, QC ETNAC, CSM Stiteler and SFC M. Holstein, Tallahassee South station.