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News > Commentary - Maintaining Arctic Warrior standards
Maintaining Arctic Warrior standards

Posted 10/18/2012   Updated 10/18/2012 Email story   Print story


Commentary by Command Sgt. Maj. Bernie Knight
USARAK command sergeant major

10/18/2012 - JOINT BASE ELMENDORF-RICHARDSON, Alaska -- As I visit the various units and organizations here in Alaska, I'm truly impressed by the quality of our Soldiers and the work they're accomplishing.

Meeting with the young men and women who serve in the Last Frontier gives me great confidence in our Army and reminds me of why it is the greatest in the world - it's because of our standards and the leaders who enforce those standards.

You'll often hear me say we are a standards-based organization. I believe that with every fiber in my body. Without a doubt, most of our Soldiers here feel the same way, but we must commit ourselves daily to ensuring that we all are living up to this statement.

Soldiers stationed in Alaska, from private to command sergeant major, from second lieutenant to major general, have a copy of the Arctic Warrior Standards handbook (U.S. Army Alaska Pamphlet 600-2) and they carry it with them every day.

Not only does this handbook tell the history of the Army in Alaska, it will give you the azimuth for what right looks like. The strength of the book, however, comes from those who carry it. The Arctic Warrior Standard handbook only works if leaders are engaged.
I need leaders at every level to enforce the standards. Don't wait for the first sergeant to tell you one of your Soldiers needs a haircut; don't wait for your platoon sergeant to tell you your Soldier needs a vehicle inspection before a four-day pass; don't wait for your squad leader to tell you your battle buddy has a uniform discrepancy.

Never walk by something that is wrong without making a correction. Chances are the Soldier who is not meeting the standard simply isn't aware. Take action and be a part of fixing problems rather than complaining about them.

When we get this mindset of engaged leadership that enforces standards in all we do down to the most junior Soldier, we will become an even stronger organization.

We must take pride in our standards and our leaders must take pride in enforcing our standards.

The Arctic Warrior Standards handbook can be found online on the USARAK homepage at:

Continue to take care of yourselves and your Soldiers.

Thank you for your support.

Arctic Warriors! Arctic Tough!

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