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NEWS | March 23, 2018

Past, present CSMs discuss Army future during forum

By Staff Sgt. Teresa J. Cleveland 633rd Air Base Wing Public Affairs

U.S. Army Centers of Excellence command sergeants major and former U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command CSMs gathered to discuss the future of Army training and education during a workshop at Joint Base Langley-Eustis from March 19-23, 2018.

Command Sgt. Maj. David Davenport Sr., TRADOC command sergeant major, invited former TRADOC CSMs from as far back as the 1980s to gain knowledge on the goals of today’s Army.

“Living in the civilian community as a retiree, we get to hear and read what’s going on with the Army from the media just like everyone else,” said retired Command Sgt. Maj, Anthony Williams, who served as the TRADOC CSM from 2001 to 2005. “But, to come back in the room with your peers and fellow sergeants major and listen to what’s really going on, and how they’re shaping, changing and adapting the Army is really educational for us.”

The CSMs discussed the four major functions of TRADOC; designing, acquiring, building and improving today and tomorrow’s Army. 

“This week is about bringing COE CSMs and proponent school CSMs together as a group to share best practices and get updates on new initiatives on training and education from the TRADOC staff and the TRADOC CSM,” said Sgt. Maj. Mike Lavigne, TRADOC public affairs sergeant major. “TRADOC has a huge responsibility to the Army and with the four areas that we focus on, it’s not a TRADOC mission, it’s an Army mission.”

Former TRADOC CSMs were given opportunities throughout the week to mentor current CSMs one-on-one and to share experiences and best practices from their time in the Army.

“There’s a lot of value bringing in that age and experience back to the table to take a look at what we’re doing,” said Lavigne. “We’re always focused on the mission in front of us but it’s good to bring someone in who has perspective and who can provide context to some of the things we’re pushing.”

As the forum came to a close, Davenport thanked the CSMs for their participation and expressed his hope that the tradition of inviting former TRADOC CSMs to future workshops continues. 

“Much of the work we’re accomplishing in TRADOC today is built on the level foundation these great leaders laid for us during their individual tenures as TRADOC CSMs.” Davenport said. “We just couldn’t have done it without them, and it’s so humbling to have them return and see how far the work they started has gone.”