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SEAC shares joint vision with Keesler
Tech. Sgt. Jonathan Johnson, 81st Security Forces Squadron combat arms, demonstrates the lighting capabilities inside the 81st SFS's indoor firing range to Marine Sgt. Maj. Bryan Battaglia, Senior Enlisted Advisor to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and Army Master Sgt. Terrence Hayes, SEAC public affairs chief Jan. 16, 2013, at Keesler Air Force Base, Miss. Battaglia’s one-day visit allowed him the opportunity to acquaint himself with Keesler’s people, mission and contribution to the bigger military picture. He also talked to enlisted Keesler members about the CJCS’ four priorities, his own key themes and his thoughts on bridging the basics and total force fitness. (U.S. Air Force photo by Kemberly Groue)
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SEAC shares joint vision with Keesler

Posted 1/18/2013   Updated 1/18/2013 Email story   Print story


by Senior Airman Heather Heiney
81st Training Wing Public Affairs

1/18/2013 - KEESLER AIR FORCE BASE, Miss. -- Once a person dons the uniform of their branch of service it can be easy to let their identity as an Airman, Marine, Soldier or Sailor cloud the fact that they are a member of a larger United States military. Keesler Airmen had the opportunity to be reminded of the bigger picture Jan. 16 when Marine Sgt. Maj. Bryan Battaglia, senior enlisted advisor to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and the highest-ranking enlisted member of the U.S. military, visited Keesler Air Force Base, Miss.

During the SEAC's visit he had the opportunity to acquaint himself with Keesler's people, mission and contribution to that greater military picture.

"I've seen a lot of good things on this base in a short amount of time, even some things that I'm going to take back up to D.C. with me," Battaglia said.

He also said his favorite part of the visit was meeting Airmen and listening to the pride they have for what they do for the 81st Training Wing.

"I love having opportunities to approach service members and listen to you talk about your jobs, there's nothing better or more refreshing or more rewarding for me than to do that," Battaglia said.

Keesler trains Airmen across a spectrum of specialties and also hosts Marines and Sailors for joint weather training.

"Our non-prior service Airmen that are training here at Keesler Air Force Base are our top priority, training is what we do, it's our mission and we're very proud of it," Chief Master Sgt. Angelica Johnson, 81st TRW command chief, said.

"You never have a rank that makes you exempt from learning," Battaglia said. "If I don't practice my skill, my art, it becomes perishable. The lack of proficiency brings on irrelevancy, so it's vitally important that we continue to train and educate."

A few benefits of a joint training environment, like that of Keesler's weather school, are that it allows service members to share different ideas, thoughts and practices.

"The joint environment provides us the opportunity to set our parochialism and our egos aside, listen to some other thoughts and ideas that our peer group may have and inject them where we can to make our military more efficient and effective," the SEAC said.

The SEAC also held and enlisted call at the Welch Theater to reiterate the CJCS' four priorities, his own key themes and total force fitness.

The Chairman's four priorities are: achieve our national objectives in the current conflicts, develop joint force 2020, keep faith with our military family and renew our commitment to the profession of arms. Battaglia's key themes parallel those of the CJCS: bridging the basics by enhancing core competencies, preserving readiness and strengthening our commitment to the total force.

"If they're the Chairman's priorities, they should be our priorities," the SEAC said. "That's why we're all here as members of this armed force, that's why we all serve."

He also said he uses the oath of enlistment, which is identical for all enlisted members no matter what their rank or branch of service, to renew his commitment to the armed forces and remember why he serves.

"Whether you know it or not, you're willing to give your life for your nation. Think about that, it's pretty powerful," Battaglia said. "And you volunteered. That says a lot about your character."

If he could give one piece of advice to enlisted members, Battaglia said it would be the same advice he received early in his career to do his job to the best of his ability and follow orders.

"I found that those two golden rules helped me along the way and probably played a significant impact as to why I'm sitting in this position today," he said.

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