September 4, 2015

39th Chief of Staff of the Army: Initial Message to the Army

Gen. Mark A. Milley
Army Chief of Staff
Chief of Staff of the Army Gen. Mark A. Milley is the 39th Army CSA, having been sworn in Aug. 14. Education: Princeton University, bachelor’s degree in political science; Columbia University, master’s degree in international relations; U.S. Naval War College, master’s degree in national security and strategic studies. Most recent assignment: 21st commander, U.S. Army Forces Command (FORSCOM), August 2014 to August 2015 (the National Training Center, an Army combat training center, is a direct-reporting organization to FORSCOM).

We have the most skilled, ethical, and combat hardened Army in our Nation’s history. No matter where we are around the world, America’s Soldiers are displaying courage, commitment and character. We are demonstrating unparalleled competence and agility. And no matter the challenge, no matter how complex the environment, or how dangerous the situation, our Soldiers fight and win.

I am honored to lead this remarkable team.

I have three priorities:

#1. Readiness: (Current Fight) Our fundamental task is like no other – it is to win in the unforgiving crucible of ground combat. We must ensure the Army remains ready as the world’s premier combat force. Readiness for ground combat is – and will remain – the U.S. Army’s #1 priority. We will always be ready to fight today, and we will always prepare to fight tomorrow. Our most valued assets, indeed, the Nation’s most valued assets, are our Soldiers and our solemn commitment must always be to never send them into harm’s way untrained, poorly led, undermanned, or with less than the best equipment we can provide. Readiness is #1, and there is no other #1.

#2. Future Army: (Future Fight) We will do what it takes to build an agile, adaptive Army of the future. We need to listen and learn – first from the Army itself, from other services, from our interagency partners, but also from the private sector, and even from our critics. Developing a lethal, professional and technically competent force requires an openness to new ideas and new ways of doing things in an increasingly complex world. We will change and adapt.

#3. Take Care of the Troops: (Always) Every day we must keep foremost in our minds our Soldiers, Civilians, and their Families. Our collective strength depends on our people – their mental and physical resilience is at our core. We must always treat each other with respect and lead with integrity. Our Soldiers are the crown jewels of the Nation; we must love them, protect them, and always keep faith with them.

I am honored and proud to serve with you. Thank you for your service and commitment to a cause larger than yourselves.

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