By Tim Cherry, Belvoir EagleJune 14, 2012
FORT BELVOIR, Va. (June14) -- Fort Belvoir's new Command Sgt. Maj. Chester Grelock, has a simple expectation for the Soldiers and civilians he will be working with.
Come to work ready to provide professional opinions -- leave the personal thoughts at home.
"It's the professional opinion that examines documents and brings people together for a common goal," Grelock said. "Whether you like something or not, is it the right thing to do? Are there rules and regulations that have you perform a task a certain way? If so, then you've got to do it. That's what I expect, nothing more and nothing less."
Grelock assumed his new position a month ago and is adjusting well to the operations on post. He believes Belvoir is a great place to live, work and play.
Grelock replaces retired Command Sgt. Maj. Gabriel Berhane who finished his 29 year career in April. Berhane served as Belvoir's command sergeant major for three years.
Grelock's believes his job is to build upon Berhane's leadership, stating he's inheriting a position and post with nothing to fix.
The Florida native's goal is to use his 28 years of military experience to provide sound advice to the garrison commander, and build upon Belvoir's established partnerships with tenant organizations and the external community.
Grelock expects the Soldiers and civilians who will help him achieve this goal to keep work simple, objective and focused on the mission, "which is making this garrison successful," Grelock said. "Everything that I've done up to this point has naturally prepared me for this role."
Grelock served as the command sergeant major for three battalions prior to arriving at Fort Belvoir. His most recent assignment was with the112th Signal Battalion Special Operations (Airborne) at Fort Bragg, N.C.
The positions gave Grelock experience in training Soldiers, resource management, infrastructure and strategic support, and customer service with tenant organizations and civilians, among other skills.
Grelock believes he's a well rounded Soldier capable of handling any issue and improving any situation.
"Find the problem fix and it, that's what my other experiences have helped me with," Grelock said. "Let's get to the heart and soul of the issue, solve it and move on."
At Belvoir, Grelock is the senior enlisted advisor to the Garrison Commander, Col. John Strycula. Grelock will fulfill the same duties for the incoming commander, Col. Greg Gadson, currently the director for the Army's Wounded Warrior Program.
The command sergeant major provides guidance on day-to-day garrison requirements such as finding lodging for Soldiers and supporting community events.
"We support the commander's intent, which in turn helps the garrison run smoothly," Grelock said.
Two focus areas for Grelock during his tenure are maintaining and improving the established partnerships with the garrison's tenant organizations and the Northern Virginia counties surrounding Fort Belvoir.
According to Grelock, quality relationships with both are critical, as they support garrison missions such as the improving transportation for employees and honoring the service of Soldiers and Families.
Grelock's objective is to nourish existing partnerships and help them grow stronger.
"The garrison has good relationships with the tenants, from the ones that I've seen," Grelock said. "I just want to continue those relationships and build upon them."
With his goals and responsibilities clear, Grelock is ready to fulfill his duties as Belvoir's command sergeant major.
"It's not about me; I've already been there and done that. It's about how we can make this place better, improve the foxhole," Grelock said. "I'm fortunate to have a great crew of folks, with depth, that can take a complex place like Belvoir and make it better."