The 311th Expeditionary Sustainment Command (ESC) conducted Equal Opportunity Leadership training at March Air Reserve Base Feb. 28 through March 7, to Soldiers from six different U.S. Army Reserve units attending from locations as far away as Texas, Ohio and Indiana.
According to U.S. Army regulations, equal opportunity leaders (EOLs) assist commanders at the battalion-level or equivalent and below in carrying out the Equal Opportunity Program within their units.
The EOLs serve a special duty at the small unit level, appointed by their commander’s, EOLs hold the rank of sergeant and are promotable through first lieutenant.
“Equal opportunity is a combat multiplier so that commanders can ensure the fair treatment to all military personnel and families from within their own ranks,” said Patricia Burns, 311th ESC equal opportunity program manager. “The role of the EOL is not just a duty position but a way of life in order to ensure that we have equality, fairness and diversity for everyone.”
The training consisted of a two week course with a curriculum that developed a base of knowledge and skills allowing the graduates to assess human relations climates in the organizations they serve, and to provide advice and assistance to commanders to prevent, reduce, or eliminate discriminatory practices.
“This course helps support the Army Values by providing Soldiers the required training and knowledge about being an (equal opportunity) unit representative and helps sustain the mission by creating a friendly, non-hostile work environment,” said Sgt. 1st Class Christine M. Kruise, 201st Public Affairs Operations Center financial management manager. “I feel that I have a better understanding on how the EOL program works and to help prevent potential hostile environment in my unit.”
The EOL course uses a building-block concept that studies progress from communications to individual and group behavior, through studies of major ethnic groups, aspects of power and discrimination, equal opportunity advisor skills, and concludes with service specific studies.
Brig. Gen. Scottie Carpenter, 311th ESC commanding general, attended the last day of training to personally congratulate each of the graduates.