U.S. Army Soldier Show
Survivor Outreach Services p. 4
Commander/Publisher MG Reuben D. Jones
Volume 1, No. 2 SUMMER 2010
Family and MWR
Commanding General’s Letter
Survivor Outreach Services (SOS)
Exceptional Family Member Program (EFMP) Making Good on its Promise
Family and MWR Employees’ Professional Development Program
MWR Customer Service Program
Family and MWR Renaming the Academy
Unveiling the New Family and MWR Logo
Fort Knox Family Information Center
Promoting the U.S. Army Soldier Show
Bamberg’s Stable Theater
Deployed Soldier Becomes Honorary Coach
Army Entertainment Summit
Command Sergeant Major CSM Abe Vega
Director, Public Affairs Edward Johnson
Creative Director Edward Griffin, Jr.
ON THE COVER MG Reuben D. Jones discusses strategies with LTG Rick Lynch at the Family and MWR Command HQ in Alexandria, VA. Photo illustration by Rob McIlvaine
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Perspectives is produced by the Public Affairs Office of the Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation Command under the authority of the commander and AR 215-1, “MWR Nonappropriated Fund Activities and Morale, Welfare and Recreation Activities.” Perspectives is also available online at www.armymwr.com. Purpose: to provide information about Army Family, Morale, Welfare and Recreation programs and activities and to share ideas and best practices. Views and opinions are those of the authors. The mention or appearance of commercial vendors and/or their logos neither implies nor constitutes federal endorsement of products or services.
Commanding Generalâ€™s Letter MG Reuben D. Jones
People First, Mission Always Welcome to the second edition of the Family and MWR Perspectives Magazine. As the Commanding General of the Armyâ€™s Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation Command, I am very passionate and committed to ensure the total Army Community (Soldiers, Civilians, Families, and Retirees) receive the best possible programs and services to enhance their strength and resilience. One approach is to proactively develop, maintain and incorporate our support of resiliency within our plans. We must optimize their ability to adapt to stress and promote total wellness of mind, body, and spirit. We will provide the best care, support and services for the Army Community by improving quality of life through initiatives such as the Installation Management Campaign Plan, the Army Family Covenant, Army Community Covenant, the Army Family Action Plan and the Comprehensive Soldier Fitness Program. The Family and MWR programs and services we provide promote resiliency and serve as an outlet for the Army Community to deal with the daily pressures of a military lifestyle.
W FOLLO ME ON ER! TWITT
The strain of multiple deployments and other stress factors may continue into the future. We, as the Family and MWR providers, must think of new ideas to enhance resiliency initiatives. Together, as one team, we can make a huge difference for those Soldiers, Families, Civilians and Retirees who sacrifice so much to defend our nation and our freedom. They deserve the best and that is exactly what we will provide to them. Give it your best effort!
Reuben D. Jones Major General, USA Commanding
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Survivor Outreach Services Program Committed to Families of the Fallen By Rob McIlvaine FMWRC Public Affairs
.S. Army Chief of Staff, GEN George W. Casey, Jr., who lost his father, MG George W. Casey, in Vietnam on July 1970, developed the idea for a better support system for Survivors of fallen service members in late 2006. He knew he couldn’t do it alone. Following a 2007 Gold Star Remembrance Ceremony in the Pentagon, one of the first to hear his call for help was Donna Engeman, a Survivor and a dedicated Army spouse for 23 years who lost her husband, Army Chief Warrant Officer John Engeman, when he was killed May 2006 in Iraq. “I was standing outside the ceremony in the hallway of the Pentagon, thinking to myself, ‘if I ever get a chance to tell the Army what I think…’ and suddenly I found myself standing alongside GEN Casey. “I told him in so many words that this whole casualty assistance process stinks,” Engeman said. She turned to walk away, figuring he would fix it. “Don’t walk away,” Casey called out to her. “You’re going to help me fix it.” Two years later, Casey and Engeman and about 55 other Survivors met at the Survivor Outreach Services Summit to take stock of how far they’ve come and how far they’ve got to go. “There is clearly and rightly a lot of pain in this room, but solutions aren’t going to happen overnight. As you leave this summit, spread your arms and bring in others,” Casey told the Survivors who attended the October 2009 SOS Summit. “Obviously, the issues we’ve heard [this week] means we haven’t been doing enough for our Survivors,” Casey said. “Julia Compton Moore, wife of LTC
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Army Chief of Staff, GEN George W. Casey, Jr., who lost his father in Vietnam, speaks to Survivors from across the country at the 2nd annual summit of FMWRC’s Survivors Outreach Services in Arlington, Va. Photo by Rob McIlvaine, FMWRC Public Affairs
(Ret.) Hal Moore, is a U.S. Army daughter, wife and mother, who was depicted in the film “We Were Soldiers” by actress Madeleine Stowe. She was one of the first to plant seeds of improvement. In November 1965, Moore and 450 men of the 1st Battalion, 7th Calvary were dropped by helicopter into a small clearing in the Ia Drang Valley and were immediately surrounded by 2,000 North Vietnamese Soldiers. Through the efforts and complaints given by Julia in the aftermath of this battle, the Army set up survivor support networks and casualty notification teams consisting of uniformed officers, which are still in use today.
“If it hadn’t been for leaders like Mrs. Moore who saw a need for change and spoke up, we’d still be dealing with casualties in the same manner depicted in the film,” Engeman said, referring to the Army’s former practice of sending notification via telegrams, often delivered by cab drivers. SOS, launched two years ago, is an Army-wide program designed to provide dedicated and comprehensive support to Survivors of deceased Soldiers with dedicated resources, and a commitment to providing first class service for as long as the Family desires. Improved resourcing at Casualty Assistance Centers ensures those who work with Survivors are well-trained and knowledgeable about the myriad of
Army Vice Chief of Staff, GEN Peter W. Chiarel-
“I was standing outside the ceremony in the hallway of the Pentagon, thinking to myself, ‘if I ever get a chance to tell the Army what I think...’ and suddenly I found myself alongside of GEN Casey.”
li speaks with Hampton and Jane Caughman, parents who survived the loss of their son, at the 2009 Survivors Outreach Services Summit. Photo by Rob McIlvaine, FMWRC Public Affairs
Donna Engeman, Survivor available benefits. By expanding and improving services to Families of the fallen, SOS ensures a holistic and multi-agency approach that provides comprehensive and consistent levels of service at the installation level and across all components to reach geographically dispersed Families. The program is a joint effort with collaboration from Installation Management Command (IMCOM), Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation Command (FMWRC), the Casualty and Mortuary Affairs Operation Center (CMAOC), the Army National Guard and Army Reserve. To ensure Survivors receive ongoing support, SOS support coordinators are available in Army Community Service centers. These coordinators provide long-term support throughout the grief process, coordinate support groups, provide information and referral services, coordinate child care as needed, and provide other services as required. At last year’s summit, Lynn McCollum, FMWRC Director of Family Programs, emphasized the work that’s been done over the past year, based on the gaps identified at the first summit, and identified the needs her staff are currently addressing. “We’ve added 50 support coordinators for the Active Army, eight for the Reserve, and our plan is to hire 108 for the Army National Guard who will be stationed at
Army Community Services (ACS) centers, regional Reserve Readiness commands and Joint Force headquarters in all 50 states and four U.S. territories. “At Casualty Assistance Centers, we’ve added 35 benefits coordinators, and at ACS centers, we’ve added financial consultants. We’ve also added 30 trainers at CAC to better train Casualty Officers and Notification Officers,” McCollum said. Other recently added benefits and entitlements for Survivors, McCollum said, include extending housing benefits to 365 days after the time of death. Survivors living off the installation are now provided one year of basic allowance for housing. One of the other changes is a new, webbased, SOS information portal, now accessible through Army OneSource. “To help bring resources to you, we are developing a virtual world in cyberspace so it’s easier for Survivors to connect with others,” McCollum said. Social networking, resource links, and a monitored feedback loop to respond to Survivor queries and provide support is currently available. At full operational capability the virtual world space will be a place for Survivors to connect and meet in a secure, private, on-line environment, such as a virtual world chapel that will enable Survivors to obtain chaplain support on-line. While the Summit indicated there is more work to be done, Army leadership, at
the most senior levels, is clearly dedicated to ensure Survivor’s needs are met. LTG Rick Lynch, IMCOM commanding general, has put his full support behind SOS by making the program one of his top priorities. The U.S. Army wants Survivors to remain an integral part of the Army Family for as long as they desire. In a recent speech, Donna Engeman used the solemn words of a 1948 Archibald MacLeish poem entitled “The Young Dead Soldiers Do Not Speak.” “This poem spoke to me early in my career with SOS because I feared that by not remembering the Fallen and their Families we were not giving meaning to those deaths. Freedom is so very costly, and those deaths are the receipts,” Engeman said. She read the poem (excerpt follows): “They say, We were young. We have died. Remember us. They say, We have done what we could But until it is finished it is not done. They say, We have given our lives But until it is finished no one can know what our lives gave.” “We’re telling our Soldiers that they won’t be forgotten, and our actions with SOS give meaning to that,” Engeman said. For more information: Hal Snyder, SOS Program Manager, at firstname.lastname@example.org
SOS support coordinators are available in Army Community Service centers. These coordinators provide long-term support throughout the grief process, coordinate support groups, provide information and referral services, coordinate child care as needed and provide other services as required.
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Making Good on Its Promise By Rob McIlvaine FMWRC Public Affairs
he U.S. Army Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation Command recently conducted the second Exceptional Family Member Program Summit to enhance services for Family members with special needs, keeping the promise of the Army Family Covenant. Active duty Soldiers enroll in the program when they have a Family member who has a physical, emotional, developmental or intellectual disorder requiring specialized services so their needs can be considered in the military personnel assignment process. “The Army EFMP leads the uniformed services and the Nation through a model of support for Soldiers and Families with special needs by connecting and supplementing existing national networks of support and services with local military and civilian resources,” LTG Rick Lynch, IMCOM commander, said. A mandatory enrollment program, EFMP works with other military and civilian agencies to provide comprehensive and coordinated community support, housing, educational, medical and personnel services to Families with special needs. “The needs of EFMP are great, and much work remains to be done, particularly in the areas of communication and program standardization. We must have seamless program standardization from garrison to garrison,” Sharon Fields, FMWRC EFMP Manager, said. This EFMP vision has been in the works for the past year and is scheduled for a July 2010 implementation. With many garrisons becoming joint-based communities, this standardization should work seamlessly for EFMP Families throughout the Department of Defense. Efforts are ongoing to help EFMP Families transition smoothly to communities where their special needs will be met with
“ACS is like a ‘yellow pages’ for special needs information.” Susan Moyer, EFMP Manager, Fort Carson comprehensive and coordinated services. Soldiers can then focus on mission readiness, knowing their Families’ needs are met. “The command knows what’s needed. When LTG Lynch visits a garrison, he always pulls together a focus group of parents who are 6 | P E R S P E C T I V E S Summer 2010
enrolled in EFMP because he wants to hear their concerns and suggestions to make the program better,” Fields said. According to one mother, EFMP is wasting no time in making good on its promise. SFC Fernice Morton, Fort Lewis, Washington, Equal Opportunity Advisor, has a son enrolled in EFMP. “I was selected to go to the EFMP Summit after attending an EFMP workshop at Fort Lewis, Wash. While there, I was in respite care transition between contractors and the Army Community Service staff was always available to assist me every step of the way,” Morton said. Antoinette Hill is also a volunteer who is also the spouse of a retired Soldier with a daughter enrolled in EFMP. “I have witnessed the evolution of this program for more than 30 years and the stars are aligned for great potential. While the nation is focused on the military, we are focused on collaborative EFMP partnerships and the partners are stepping up. Families, Warriors and Survivors are better served and EFMP better fulfills the promises of the Army Family Covenant,” Hill said. Families need to remember where to get helpful information. “Army Community Service works hand in hand with the EFMP at the medical facility. While the medical services are responsible for the enrollment paperwork, at ACS we provide everything else [support, information and links] you need,” Susan Moyer, Army Community Services EFMP Manager at Fort Carson, Colo., said. According to Moyer, services that parents and individuals are searching for are right at their fingertips. “ACS is like a ‘yellow pages’ for special needs information.” As the EFMP Summit drew to a close, LTG Lynch summed up the way ahead. “Take care of our Soldiers and Families, one Family at a time. To do this, we’ve got to fix this program so it works better and we have to get the word out. When I was a young commander, no one told me about EFMP. I had to learn about it on my own,” Lynch said. In the near future, FMWRC EFMP will implement a system that fully supports Families with special needs at five pilot locations: Fort Belvoir, Va.; Fort Campbell, Ky; USAG Grafenwoehr, Germany; Fort Leavenworth, Kan.; and Fort Lewis-McChord, Wash. Also in the near future, the Army will identify what’s required for joint services to participate in this program.
For more information: visit Family Programs at www.myarmyresource.com
Professional Development Program Helps Employees Plan Successful Career By Rob McIlvaine FMWRC Public Affairs
“This is a set of web-based tools, to empower all Family and MWR employees to plan for a successful career in our enterprise.” Janis Smith, Academy Deputy Director
Diane Carr, an instructor at MG Robert M. Joyce Family and MWR Academy, instructs a class of 18 students in “Foundations of Marketing,” broken up into four groups. Here she discusses branding with a group who nicknamed themselves “The Real Army Wives” as they brainstorm CYSS youth and teen sports programs. Since the academy’s inception, more than 28,400 Family and MWR employees have been trained at all levels in various FMWR program areas. (Clockwise from left) Melissa Wells of Ft. Campbell, Ky.; Gia Oney of Baden-Wurttemberg, Germany; Kim Huston of Ft. Bragg, N.C.; and Kathryn Hacker of Ft. Richardson, Alaska. Photo by Rob McIlvaine, FMWRC Public Affairs
ith the increased emphasis on workforce development and training, the MG Robert M. Joyce Family and MWR Academy has developed the Professional Development Program. “This is a set of web-based tools to empower all Family and MWR employees to plan for a successful career in our enterprise,” FMWR Academy Deputy Director Janis Smith said. The PDP has tools to help employees and program managers make informed decisions about selecting specific training needs necessary for their staff, based on the
knowledge, skills and abilities needed to be proficient in their career fields. These tools are now available at the Academy’s website, www.mwraonline.com. “The PDP is available to all employees upon registration. Just log on the site, select My Records and then click on PDP and then Current PDP,” Smith said. The “Current PDP” includes employee personal information, a brief job description and the competencies required to be proficient on the job. The competencies are supported by knowledge, skills and abilities with associated learning resources. “One of the reasons Family and MWR
supervisors have embraced the PDP is because it provides multiple resources to assist in employee development,” Smith said. Anita Payne-Landgraf, CYSS coordinator at USAG Grafenwoehr, Germany, liked the added benefit of employee empowerment. The PDP provides a library of more than 1,500 position profiles so anyone looking to improve their current skills or climb the career ladder now has the tools to help them make informed decisions. “I will fully utilize this tool throughout the organization. I especially like the resource list linked to each competency. This is a great way to empower employees toward self-development, and it’s a super tool that will help make my job easier,” PayneLandgraf said. After employees select learning elements in collaboration with their supervisors, the PDP has the capability to automatically capture the selections and populate an IMCOM-approved Individual Development Plan form. This form is a five-year plan for professional growth and development. Derek McKinley, Business Manager at USAG Ansbach, Germany, is excited about this program’s development. “I think this is a great way to develop IDPs. It will also allow employees to control their own careers. If they are more motivated, this will give them direction to continue their development,” McKinley said. Supervisors have access to a module to Summer 2010 P E R S P E C T I V E S | 7
This is a great way to empower employees toward self-development, and it’s a super tool that will help make my job easier.” Payne-Landgraf CYSS coordinator, USAG Grafenwoehr, Germany
assist in coaching and managing their employees—the Supervisor Console. This tool includes a list of every employee they supervise, their transcripts, PDPs, IDPs and other documentation. This snapshot of employees’ development is helpful in monitoring training completion. “This will help me as a supervisor to better prepare myself, not only for my career development program but also to help subordinates prepare for their future career with Family and MWR, and it’s a good tool to track training,” said Eugene Woods, Financial Readiness Manager, USAG
Bamberg, Germany. Because the PDP is web-based, it is available to Family and MWR employees worldwide, at any time. Douglas Banks, Assistant Business Manager, USAG Grafenwoehr, Germany, believes it will make his job easier in an environment with a high turnover of staff. “This will be a great training and organizational tool to develop employees’ career paths,” Banks said. “Although they rotate in and out every year or two, it’s a good centralized location to keep track of their development plans,” Banks said.
The fact that it’s internet-based means the employees won’t have to start over at their new duty station. Through the second quarter of this year, Family and MWR Academy staff have trained 1,561 supervisors and 459 other key staff at 45 garrisons. PDP training for the remaining Garrisons will be completed by the end of this year, through either on-site or virtual sessions. For more information in using the PDP, several job aids and tutorials are available to assist you in the “Performance Support” menu at www.mwraonline.com.
FAMILY AND MWR EMPLOYEE AND CUSTOMER COVENANT EMPLOYEE COVENANT
Taking care of our customers begins with taking care of you, our employees.
We are committed to providing quality through service excellence to our Soldiers and Families commensurate with the quality of their service to our Nation.
We are committed to providing a strong, supportive environment where you can thrive. To that end, we promise to position you for success with:
We understand that we create value for our customers through predictable, consistent, efficient and customer-focused service.
To that end, we promise our customers they will:
A robust orientation to welcome you to the Family and MWR team
• Clear performance standards for service excellence
• Always be respected and treated as individuals who are valued
• Formal and informal training to develop your skills
• Receive a prompt and friendly greeting in a professional and courteous manner
• Performance support tools to assist you on the job
• Experience aesthetically-pleasing facilities
• Receive timely, accurate and helpful information
A holistic program of recognition and incentives to reward excellent service
• Career development opportunities to reach your full potential
• Be offered high quality products and services • Have an opportunity to provide feedback
For more Information: Jason Bell, FMWRC Academy, (703) 275-5056, email@example.com
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MG Reuben D. Jones, FMWRC Commanding General, signs the Family and MWR Employee and Customer Covenant as senior leaders and 15 newly-hired customer service coordinators look on. Photo by Eduardo Alejandro, FMWRC Marketing
Family and MWR Customer Service Program By Rob McIlvaine FMWRC Public Affairs
he Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation Command recently developed a comprehensive, holistic Customer Service Program to create and sustain a customer service culture within FMWRC activities. The Army Senior Executive Leadership approved the program in Fiscal Year 2009 and implementation is now underway. This is a dedicated Family and MWR program to better position employees for success in serving our customers, in support of the Army Family Covenant. The initiative establishes 30 customer service coordinators, centrally-funded by FMWRC, who are strategically located across garrisons worldwide in support of Family and MWR programs. These coordinators will support Family and MWR Directors in implementing, monitoring and sustaining the standardized enterprise program, which aims to increase customer participation and satisfaction, increase employee job satisfaction, retain highperforming employees, and sustain employee engagement and commitment. Taking care of Soldiers, Families and our Civilian Workforce is a priority. To that end, MG Reuben D. Jones, Commander, FMWRC, signed the first Family and MWR Employee and Customer
Covenant, Jan. 25, 2010. This covenant is a promise of excellence to both employees and customers. “It is a symbol of the commitment we will make to doing business a bit differently, understanding the way to provide excellent service to Soldiers and Families is through our employees,” said Mr. Rich Gorman, Executive Director and Chief Operating Officer, at the first signing event. According to Gorman, signing events will take place at every garrison to reinforce Family and MWR’s commitment to the employees and customers we serve every day.
“It is a symbol of the commitment we will make to doing business a bit differently, understanding the way to provide excellent service to Soldiers and Families is through our employees.” Mr. Rich Gorman FMWRC, Chief Operating Officer Summer 2010 P E R S P E C T I V E S | 9
Academy Renamed to Honor Army Visionary By Rob McIlvaine FMWRC Public Affairs
he Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation Academy officially became the MG Robert M. Joyce Family and MWR Academy during a May 27, 2010, ceremony. The re-naming ceremony took place to honor Joyce, who originally established the Academy to provide Armywide training programs for the U.S. Army Community and Family Support Center staff. As commander of USACFSC (now known as FMWRC), MG Joyce established “…policy that would put the command on track to operate on business principles, while adding immeasurably to the quality of life required to sustain an all-volunteer force,” said Rich Gorman, Executive Director and Chief Operating Officer, FMWRC, in his letter of support for re-naming the Academy to the IMCOM commander in Oct. 2009. Joining Gorman in his endorsement were former CSFC commanders MG (Ret.) John G. Meyer, Jr. and MG (Ret.) Craig B. Whelden, along with the current FMWRC Commander, MG Reuben D. Jones. The IMCOM Commander, LTG Rick Lynch, approved the request. “This request is based on MG Joyce’s vision, commitment and service to Soldiers, Families and the MWR workforce during his 38 years of distinguished service in the U.S. Army and to the Nation,” Jones said. When MG Robert M. Joyce became the first commander of the CSFC, he established the groundwork which would eventually transform the Army’s Morale, Welfare and Recreation programs into more efficient operations. In a paper presented to LTG Allen K. Ono, the Army Deputy Chief of Staff for Personnel, which outlined his vision, Joyce 10 | P E R S P E C T I V E S Summer 2010
Mrs. Virginia “Ginny” Joyce, along with MG Reuben D. Jones, unveil the MG Robert M. Joyce Family and MWR Academy plaque at the Academy renaming ceremony, May 27. Mrs. Joyce was joined by her family and friends, who traveled from Hawaii, Ohio and Florida. Photo by Rob McIlvaine, FMWRC Public Affairs
clearly stated his reasons for, benefits derived from and methodology for achieving his goals. “The Army has changed. Soldiers no longer live in squad barracks with personal possessions limited to what would fit…in a wall locker and footlocker…and they are trained consumers. We may not be offering them what they will perceive to be conditions representative of the relatively affluent, high-expectation society from which they have come to us,” Joyce said. Joyce’s 16-page paper took GEN (Ret.) John A. Wickham’s white paper, “The Army Family,” which Wickham and former Secretary of the Army, Jack Marsh, signed on Aug. 15, 1983, to a new level with his vision. “The Chief of Staff ’s 1983 White Paper...-reflects a powerful and compelling commitment to a human goal, unprecedented not only in its scale, but in its underlying, unique institutional commitment. Many of
its precepts are totally within the capability of the Army to achieve; success will require the exercise of continuous strong leadership throughout the chain of command. Examples are a strong sponsorship program and installation support for families of deployed Soldiers,” Joyce continued in his paper. Ono responded on Sept. 3, 1987: “Bob, I…-just read your paper on the Army quality of life programs and arrangement of the future. Your presentation is clear, thoughtprovoking, imaginative, bold… It will take time, perseverance and patience awaiting opportunities to introduce elements one at a time. Thank you. You gave me the vision and inspiration to build a better Army.” Joyce was not one to leave his goals to chance, nor one to consider himself above learning and growing, activities he pursued until his final days here on earth. Born on Oct. 2, 1928, in Cleveland, Ohio, he graduated from the United States
The MG Robert M. Joyce Family and MWR Academy is a full-fledged brick and mortar institution of professional learning and career development. The Academy includes numerous subject matter experts in various areas of U.S. Army Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation activities. Nearly 100 courses are offered at the Academy through online or classroom formats. Currently, 39 courses have received college credit recommendations from the American Council on Education (ACE) and graduates are increasingly transferring them to colleges and universities to receive college credits. Since its inception, more than 28,400 FMWRC employees have been trained in various program areas, at numerous levels. Today, the Academy continues to provide cutting-edge, online learning and performance support tools. For more information: https://www.mwraonline.com/index.asp MG Robert M. Joyce
Military Academy at West Point in 1953 and then stormed ahead, first as a field artillery commander, and for the rest of his life as a student of learning. He received an MBA from George Washington University in Washington, D.C., and continued his studies at the Armed Forces Staff College in Norfolk, Va., the Industrial College of the Armed Forces and seminars at Harvard University and the UCLA Business Management School. Joyce was a Soldier’s Soldier. During the 1960’s and following his formal education, he served in Vietnam with the 1st Infantry Division, after which he was appointed commander of the U.S. Army Personnel Center in Germany from 1968 to 1970. He then served as a staff officer in the Adjutant General’s Office in Washington, D.C. Following his command of the 1st Personnel Command in Europe, Joyce became the Deputy Adjutant General of the U.S. Army in 1979. He was appointed the Adjutant General of the U.S. Army in 1981, a position he held until 1984, when he assumed the first command of the CFSC, a position he held until his retirement in 1987. Out of his own educational experiences, lifelong love of learning and a desire to bring MWR staff up to date with current business models and further their education in the MWR field, MG Joyce ordered the creation of the Morale, Welfare and Recreation Academy. After retirement from the Army, he enrolled in the Corcoran College of Art and Design in Washington, D.C., where he furthered his artistic skills as a painter and portraitist. He also became involved in renovations of historical homes in the
DuPont Circle area of Washington, D.C. In Sept. 1989, Joyce was elected to membership in the Academy of Senior Professionals at Eckerd College in St. Petersburg, Fla. While at Eckerd, he was involved in research, lecturing and student administration, as well as membership in the Creative Arts Collegium. Since its establishment in 1987, with class instruction beginning a year later, the Academy’s location has moved several times until the current doors opened on it’s current location in Alexandria, Virginia. Next year the Academy will move again, to Fort Sam Houston, Texas, into a building designed to the Academy’s specifications. Because of BRAC law, the mandatory deadline for completion of the Academy’s new building at Fort Sam Houston, Texas, is Sept. 2011. While the address has changed, the Academy’s goals still reflect Joyce’s original vision. Before the original academy doors opened, Joyce wanted to “attain organizational and management goals that would be uniform, standard, simple and flexible,” he wrote in a Feb. 1985, Joint Message. “The goal is to develop a career management system for MWR personnel. The objectives require that the system developed do the following: attain organizational and management goals, provide for adequate training, maintain Appropriated Funds funding, promote improved productivity, provide APF manpower spaces for MWR, preserve MACOM (Major Army Command) prerogatives, preserve employee benefits,
follow Army leadership and Army of excellence policies, improve service to Soldiers and Families, maintain legality, satisfy congressional mandates (funding), protect union interests, incorporate employee concerns, be affordable, be competitive professionally (career ladder), provide a proactive working atmosphere, provide for special employment (spouses, veterans, Family members), and establish forecasting needs methodology.” Continuing in his letter to LTG Ono, Joyce summed up what CSFC strived for each day: “Military installations are not evil, nor are they intentionally dehumanizing; neither are they cradles of free enterprise like the rest of American society. It is the proposition of this paper that the only things wrong with them are things that could be improved by prudent inculcation of free enterprise values; further, that we can better provide for the needs of the Army Family by application of free enterprise principles; and finally that if we truly intend to protect the most vital aspects of the military career and at the same time produce more self-reliant, proud and loyal Soldiers, we had better get on with updating our vision of what the military life ought to be like in contemporary America.” Although he succumbed to cancer on Oct. 11, 2008, the memory of MG Robert M. Joyce, thanks to the Army Memorial Program, will live on with this fitting tribute to his life’s goals for Soldiers and their Families by re-naming the academy in his honor. MG Joyce is survived by his wife, Mrs. Virginia Joyce, their five children and six grandchildren. Summer 2010 P E R S P E C T I V E S | 11
“Our customers are important to us, and we wanted to integrate them directly into the logo.” MG Reuben D. Jones FMWRC Commanding General
Family and MWR Logo Has Changed to Reflect Customer Base By Rob McIlvaine FMWRC Public Affairs
ajor General Reuben D. Jones, Family and MWR commanding general, unveiled the new Family and MWR logo on April 24, 2010, at the U.S. Army Soldier Show. As ‘brand ambassadors’, Family and MWR Marketing offices will assist other Family and MWR programs and services as they transition from the old to new brand over the next two years. The improved design, which has replaced “For All Of Your Life” with “Soldiers Families Retirees Civilians,” will be phased in over 24
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months to minimize costs. In the early 80’s a study by a public relations firm advised the Army that Soldiers and their Families had persistent confusion about what MWR meant because the brand at each installation looked and sounded different. Over the last two decades, what was once Special Services—a small branch of the U.S. Army primarily managing the club system— has grown to become the multi-billion-dollar Family and MWR Command, which manages virtually every aspect of Family support,
MG Reuben D. Jones unveils new Family and MWR logo at the U.S. Army Soldier Show, April 24. Photo by Rob McIlvaine FMWRC Public Affairs
child care, youth services, and recreational programming for the Army. Along the way, logos representing the command have morphed from the old Community and Family Support Center logo (some still refer to it as the “recycling” symbol), to the hemisphere logo, and finally, the full globe we’re familiar with today. Complicating the issue are a multitude of logos for individual programs and activities within the command, including, but not limited to, distinctive logos for Better Opportunities for Single Soldiers; Child, Youth and School Services; Army Community Service; Army Lodging; Armed Forces Recreation Centers; and a host of others. Adding to this complexity is the designation of FMWRC as a subordinate command to the Installation Management Command (which recently unveiled a new logo for their organization) and the sweeping organizational changes across the Army. FMWRC has been gathering information on brand awareness and obtaining feedback to provide relevant and factual data and assist in this important decision. Multiple focus groups and surveys were conducted with enlisted Soldiers, officers, spouses, retirees and civilian employees. In the end, it was determined the resources devoted to building brand equity over the past decade were a good investment. Focus groups recognized the brand as related to traditional MWR activities —primarily recreational and entertainment activities, where the logo is most frequently used. However, the groups were unclear on the intended audience and customer base. In many cases, they didn’t associate the logo with other services such as Family Readiness Groups, Child, Youth and School Services, and other more Family-oriented programs and services offered by the command. A redesign wasn’t called for, but a change was needed to help connect with our customers in a more relevant manner. “Our customers are important to us,” Jones said, “and we wanted to integrate them directly into the logo.” The change, according to FMWRC leadership, was brought about to strengthen the Family and MWR brand identity and provide a logo that reflects the entire Family and MWR audience: Soldiers, Families, Retirees and Civilians. “This initiative will provide stability and familiarity during these times of operational and organizational change. It will also allow FMWRC to reduce customer and employee confusion over Family and MWR identity and re-educate our internal and external customers,” Jones said. Though the change to the logo is small, ensuring the new logo’s roll-out is done in a fiscally responsible manner is key. FMWRC
Directorates at the installation level still remember the impact of replacing the hemisphere with the full globe logo less than a decade ago, and the memory of the cost of the name change required when the unit became a command less than four years ago is still fresh. Jones said FMWRC is unable to provide additional financial support for costs incurred as a result of this logo change. This is one of the reasons garrisons have up to two years to change out those items that are more costly, such as signage and displays. “We encourage garrisons to deplete existing inventory of promotional materials first, and over the next two years, phase out temporary and permanent signage, working to reach an end state of new logo signage by May 1, 2012,” Jones said. “With such a long phasing period, budgeting can be forecasted to cover these expenses,” he said. The Marketing Directorate at headquarters will provide enterprise buys and assist Directors of Family and MWR Programs—and their marketing staffs—much as possible during the transition. The command is also using this opportunity to clarify confusion still evident from the name change that took place when the command became subordinate to IMCOM, more specifically, the verbal and written references to “FMWRC” and the acronym. When referencing the command organization, always speak or write “FMWRC” or “Family and MWR Command.” When referencing command programs and services, speak or write “Family and MWR.” “FMWR” is not acceptable. When referencing “DFMWR,” speak or write “DFMWR” or “Director Family and MWR.” Marketing has prepared a brand policy memo and is updating the Family and MWR branded advertising campaign. These tools will be provided to the garrisons late summer 2010. Meanwhile, garrisons should visit www.mwrbrandcentral.com for new usage guidelines, voice and written guidelines, photos, layout templates and a whole host of additional resources and tools. “Our customers are our number one priority and including them in our tagline emphasizes this point,” said Joseph Rayzor, FMWRC Director of Marketing. “Utilizing the existing and familiar blue world logo with the new red tagline also allows us to maximize brand equity, while simultaneously moving the brand to the next level.”
Stay a step ahead: Visit www.mwrbrandcentral.com for the latest information on new logo usage and brand implementation.
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Families Joining the Army Have Experienced Shoulders to Lean on Throughout Training and Beyond By Rob McIlvaine FMWRC Public Affairs
he Army has come a long way from the days when new recruits primarily consisted of young, single men. During these economic times, the Army now welcomes older, married men and women with children, and the Families and spouses of these prospective recruits are no longer content to sit in the background during the recruitment process. Up until a few years ago, incoming Soldiers only had the local Army recruiter to answer their questions. All that changed when the Future Soldier Center began operations in May, 2006, at the U.S. Army Recruiting Command. The goal was to reduce attrition occurring between signing up and shipping off to basic training. “With FSC, the recruiter, who often wasn’t aware of a potential recruit’s personal problems, such as a high school senior’s trouble with English, now has a backup team of recruiters – many of whom are the spouses of retired NCOs – to screen calls and keep interest alive from that first call to active enlistment,” said Cyber/FSC Branch Manager John Dunlosky, a former guidance counselor. When the Future Soldier Center first began making direct phone calls to future Soldiers, the staff often found themselves speaking with the spouse or Family member. Through these direct interactions, it became obvious the spouses had many questions. The FSC began to look at ways to provide better service to meet the needs of these Family members before and after their new Soldier departed for basic training. In response to this demand, the Family Information Center was formed with the goal of becoming a one-stop source of 14 | P E R S P E C T I V E S Summer 2010
Not unlike engineers at a NASA control room, 45 representatives in the Future Soldier Center regularly communicate with prospective Soldiers. Within this group at Headquarters, U.S. Army Recruiting Command, Fort Knox, Ky., four current or retired senior leader spouses, collectively known as the Family Information Center, bring a wide array of experiences and background to share with the new spouse through phone calls, emails, online live-chat and social networking and blogging. Photo by Rob McIlvaine, FMWRC Public Affairs
available information for future spouses and Family members as they embark on their new lifestyle. “During direct contact with a new spouse, FIC reps can uncover issues which could lead to a future Soldier not shipping. These issues are forwarded to the owning recruiting station and local chain of command so they can determine if any action is necessary,” Dunlosky said. This direct notification and open communication between the FIC and the field has helped to provide an opportunity for early intervention, resulting in the successful sustainment of the Soldier. “The earlier a new Soldier and Family member can become aware of the Army Family and what it means to be a part of
the Army team, the greater the propensity that this new Soldier will honor their commitment to enlist and successfully ship to training,” Dunlosky said. “And with many spouses and Family members living far off base, FSC provided the connection needed to not only know the programs and benefits available, but also to have that valuable connection to their husband, wife, son or daughter, all thanks to The Army One Source program provides excellent information and assistance for most day-to-day issues. Soldiers and their Families can visit www.armyonesource.com or call 1-800-464-8107 for assistance.
Cindy Smith, who has worked at the Family Information Center at Ft. Knox for two years, brings over two decades of military experience as an Army spouse and mom to future spouses wanting to know more about what it means to be a member of the Army Family. Photo by Rob McIlvaine, FMWRC Public Affairs
“When the FIC reps provide spouses with useful information about what it means to be a part of the Army Family, this helps to reconfirm the potential recruit’s decision to join and make the Army their home.” Ed Jarriel, FIC Program Manager
the to Army the Army FamilyFamily Covenant. Covenant. “These aren’t empty words. This covenant is fully embraced by the recruiters who are themselves current or retired senior leader spouses, who’ve walked the walk and talked the talk,” Dunlosky said. All FIC representatives have experience with Family Readiness Groups and Army Family Team Building support actions. “They’ve been through multiple deployments, PCS moves, kids changing schools, job changes and searches, and much more, which lends instant credibility to their conversations with the young spouses asking those very same types of questions,” Dunlosky said. It’s important that the reps are truly experienced and prepared to help—not just a phone operator reading off a script. “The FIC reps are the face of Family programs to a spouse and they are the first introduction to how the Army will take care of the Family,” said J.C. Abney, Deputy to the Commanding General, Family and
Morale, Welfare and Recreation Command. “Armed with the realization that their Family is being taken care of, the new Soldier can move forward to training much more confident knowing their spouse has someone to turn to for support and answers,” Dunlosky said. During 2009, future Soldiers who had a spouse actively participating in the FIC program experienced a 98.5% ship success rate. Currently, more than 1,000 married future Soldiers ship on a monthly basis. The choice to participate in FIC enrollment is completely voluntary. It is open only to validated future Soldier spouses. This controlled registration and membership creates a unique community
inwhich the spouse feels secure and confident in interacting and asking questions. The FIC conducts their communications through telephone calls, emails, online live-chat and social networking, such as blogging through the www.armyfic.com website. Here, future Army spouses and Family members can become part of a steadily growing and extremely active online community. In the event of an emergency, all new spouses are provided a hotline number, available 24/7. More than 2,300 new spouses have enrolled in the FIC program in 2010, according to Dunlosky. Those numbers could increase dramatically; on April 1 alone, 41,000 Soldiers were waiting to ship out. Of those, 5,500 are married. FIC representative Cindy Smith frequently asks callers, “If tomorrow is your ship date, would you be ready to go?” The questions posed to Cindy by incoming Family members range in topic from TRICARE and PCSing, to “when am I getting my orders?” and “what should my Soldier bring to basic training?” The reps get the names of married future Soldiers from FSC and then send out emails with answers to a number of common questions, such as how long they will be away from their spouses, or if a spouse is scheduled to accompany their Soldier, what child care assistance is available. This facility, at U.S. Army Recruiting Command, is staffed with 45 representatives, with more than 400 years of combined Army experience, spanning 65 different military occupation specialties. Some of the staff speak Korean, Spanish and Chinese to
Family members of new recruits waiting to ship to basic training don’t have to wait to learn about the Army Family and what’s in store for them when they join their Soldier at his or her permanent duty station. The Future Soldier and Family Information Centers are available to answer questions and provide support before the prospective Soldier even swears the oath of enlistment.
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“Our commitment at Family and MWR Command needs to be just as strong as the Soldier’s commitment on the battlefield.” J.C. Abney, Deputy to the Commander, FMWRC
better serve many of the callers. better serve many of international the international Cindy Smith, who has worked at FIC for two years, is married to a now retired 1SG who served 25 years. All three of their children are in the military: one son served as a tanker for eight years and earned a Bronze Star for his service in Fallujah, a city in the Iraqi province of Al Anbar; another son has been an Air Force crew chief for eight years; and her daughter is a CPT in the Air Force, serving at the Pentagon. Rosemary Deckard, another FIC rep, served as an Army MP and is married to a MSG now serving at the Inspector General’s office for USAREC Headquarters. She was also an Army recruiter for 15 years, as well as an FRG leader. “We try to give a welcoming experience. Throughout this process of us explaining and reassuring, the spouses seem to blossom, and in turn, want to help others,” Deckard said. Not only has the program had a positive impact on retention–from signing to ship date–it’s creating a stronger Army Family once the recruit has completed training. Many spouses who have been supported by FIC have stepped forward to be involved in unit support groups, thanks in part to the Army Family Team Building classes offered through Army OneSource. Some are even becoming mentors for new Army spouses. “Once the Soldiers shipped to training, we were officially done communicating with them. But it became obvious that the spouses wanted to stay involved,” Dunlosky said. “Mentors, once they’re on the ground, can provide the correct information about what to expect,” Deckard said, adding this is something that’s been lacking when informing spouses about their future duty station. “Now we’re able to follow the new Soldiers and their Families from enlistment through BT and AIT and then to their first duty station,” Deckard said. 16 | P E R S P E C T I V E S Summer 2010
Mentors link up with Family Readiness Group leaders who now can be alerted to incoming spouses requiring child care, help with school enrollment and available employment opportunities. “And once the FRG leaders know about the incoming spouses, they can meet the Families at the gate or in a reception area,” Dunlosky said. “We currently have 14 mentors located in Germany, Alaska, Hawaii, Ft. Lewis, Ft. Bragg, Ft. Drum, Korea, Ft. Benning… even White Sands Missile Range,” Dunlosky said. “My goal is to have multiple mentors at each installation. In fact, in a pretty short time, I expect to have five or six mentors at every duty station,” Dunlosky said. Amee Jones and her husband have been married almost five years. They enlisted in the Army last September and they have one two-year-old child. “When I first joined FIC, I was amazed how out of touch and unprepared I was. But thanks to Cindy and Rosemary, I was quickly brought up to speed. And to become better informed, I took all of the AFTB classes and the mentor training. It covers a range of things from the way the Army is structured to proper etiquette and leadership skills,” Jones said. She is now a mentor at Ft. Drum. “I am their friend and an information source for them. They do not need to come here in fear of ‘what do I do now?’ They can meet with me or the other mentor and get the help they need to make this transition smoother,” Jones said. Jones says that a spouse can feel disconnected regardless of whether he or she lives on or off the installation. She counsels new spouses to get involved—not just on the installation, but in the community, as well. “The important thing is to step over your fears and ask questions,” she said. “I went to my ACS and they had all the answers
I needed and more. I recommend Family members and spouses take AFTB classes at their installation, because they not only provide information about the Army but also about the installation, and which programs are available to help with certain problems.” Realizing that others have gone through the same worries and fears, and knowing there’s people at the Family Information Center, Army Community Service, Family Readiness Groups and mentors available, helps. Jones believes spouses feel lost going through the process of joining the Army and arriving at their first duty station. While Soldiers are away training, their spouses have minimal contact with them. But the Army Family Covenant continues to work to make the process smoother. “FIC is here because of the Army Family Covenant. There are programs available to dependants free of charge because of this covenant. It is important for spouses and other dependants to understand that there are benefits out there and why they are there. AFC is the only way we can voice our concerns, attempt to make change for the better and get our issues resolved,” Jones said. “The Army Family Covenant became a commitment in October 2007, with the message to provide a quality of life commensurate with their service. This statement cannot become a cliché. Our Soldiers are facing dangers every day they serve,” Abney said. “Our commitment at Family and MWR Command needs to be just as strong as the Soldier’s commitment on the battlefield,” he continued. Knowing their Families feel secure in their new lifestyle, thanks to the covenant, the FIC reps who helped them get started in their new lifestyle and the mentors at their home garrison, the Soldier can concentrate completely on his or her mission. When the FIC reps provide spouses with useful information about what it means to be a part of the Army Family, this helps to reconfirm the potential recruit’s decision to join and make the Army their home. For more information: Contact your local recruiting station or ACS office.
Calling All Employees to Help Promote the U.S. Army Soldier Show
SSG Kamisha Edwards of Fort Hood, Texas, sings “Party in the USA” during rehearsals for the 2010 U.S. Army Soldier Show at Wallace Theater on Fort Belvoir, Va.
By Tim Hipps
Photo by Tim Hipps, FMWRC Public Affairs
FMWRC Public Affairs
he need to aggressively market, promote and publicize Army Entertainment Division’s marquee event— the U.S. Army Soldier Show— should be high on every Director of Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation’s “just do it” list, particularly when the show is headed to their installation. Senior leadership at the Army’s Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation Command believe no seat should be vacant for this “entertainment for the Soldier, by the Soldier.” The goal of the U.S. Army Soldier Show, which provides suitable entertainment for Family members of all ages, is to attract standing-room-only crowds wherever the troops perform. “You should be using a packed house as a method to raise awareness about other Family and MWR activities on your garrison,” said Carrie Pollard, an FMWRC Marketing Account Manager. “You should enhance the event with your local information, so that while they are getting the big picture and seeing talented Soldiers and the feel-good of the Soldier Show, they can also learn about local Family and MWR programming and find out where they can get involved. “A packed house increases brand loyalty towards FMWRC,” Pollard said, and each person attending is a person who might come back and use other facilities and attend other events and activities.” A plethora of Soldier Show material is available to editors of installation newspapers, magazines and websites. Visit www. ArmyMWR.com and click on Rec & Leisure, Entertainment, U.S. Army Soldier Show and then Media Kit, for a schedule and a preview of the 2010 Soldier Show, which can be localized to your location
“Who makes the decision about what the Families are going to do? The spouses do… So all my data about all my events is going out to the spouses at home in their in-box.” Melissa Schaffner, Fort Campbell Marketing
with show dates, times and sites. It also lists cast and crew members and includes both bios and photos. If your installation has a Soldier among the cast or crew, crafting an article about that performer or technician—preferably before the show comes to town—will give their friends, co-workers or members of their unit, additional incentive to attend. “If a cast or crew member comes from your hometown and they have a great story, or were stationed at your Army garrison, you can make that a bigger story,” Pollard said. “Play it up in your promotions and play it up in your ads. That’s how you build a loyal fan base. We want you to build loyal customers who will grow the fan base. Remind readers and viewers that it’s their fellow Soldiers on stage or behind the scenes making it happen.” The media kit includes enough high-resolution photographs to wrap around a preview article for a double-truck layout of a broadsheet or tabloid-style newspaper. By running material at least two or three weeks prior to the show arriving at your installation, you’re planting the seed. Remind readers again with shorter articles or standalone photos as the performance date draws closer and use features about local cast and crew the week of the show to peek interest again and draw traffic through the doors. This strategy worked well at Fort Campbell, where seating is scarce, in spite of the fact the installation runs three shows over the course of two days. “We tease early, but really hit it hard on the days leading up to the event,” said Melissa Schaffner, Fort Campbell’s Director of Family and MWR. “Generational research tells us people don’t make decisions about what they are going to do until they see if something better is going to come along, so you’ve got to keep hitting the audience with more information in the 48 hours prior to the event. That’s something I think is really important, especially when you’re talking about the 18 to 25-year-old market of Soldiers and young Families.” In addition to cast and bios, the media kit found at www. ArmyMWR.com also features information about Soldier Show Summer Summer2010 2010 PPEERRSSPPEECCTTI IVVEESS || 17
operations, cast selection, history and sponsorship – all great information for additional articles and publicity. While this is the 27th season of the modern era of the U.S. Army Soldier Show, many in the military’s ever-changing demographic are not aware of what the show is all about. “We assume people know what the U.S. Army Soldier Show is, but they do not,” Pollard said. “I can’t tell you the number of times people have asked me, ‘What is the Soldier Show? It sounds kind of boring. Is it a bunch of briefings or what is it?’ I think we’ve gotten away from telling people what the Soldier Show is and we really need to get back to the basics because we have a lot of turnover.” “The people who came to the Soldier Show in 2000 either aren’t coming any more or are loyal customers,” Pollard said. “But we need to grow the base. So how do we get new customers? “We have to remind everyone what it is again and make it exciting. That’s my goal: to re-teach new audiences.” Pollard says one audience often missed is right outside the installation’s gates. “Go out to recruiting stations and invite them to the Soldier Show. Have them invite any recruiters or potential recruits who come through. What a cool way to say, ‘Hey, are you thinking about joining the Army? Come to our Soldier Show next Saturday night and see what the Army is about, see talented Soldiers having fun in their career.’ Open it up to your local community and invite high school students and their Families. “I always love bringing my friends and Family who don’t work for Family and MWR to the show. When you bring someone from the outside and watch their expressions and how excited they are about those Soldiers, they walk out of the theater with a newfound pride and they become new loyal customers.” Another piece of the media kit explains the philosophy, mission and history of FMWRC, which provides more programs and services than most Soldiers and Family members realize. Information can also be expanded upon and localized to promote several other programs and activities on each and every installation, in addition to the Soldier Show itself. The venue’s walls, trophy cases and parking lots are all marketing opportunities. If you get more folks to the U.S. Army Soldier Show, you can lead them to more Family and MWR programs and activities. “Put up a plasma TV in the lobby and roll digital signs of your local events,” Pollard suggested. “Have a representative discuss upcoming local events with people waiting in the lobby or put a flyer in seats inviting audience members to a special event coming up at your local garrison.” Consider handing out coupons or samples. Promote everything… for example, if you have a display under a tent advertising a Family and MWR program or activity, remember to put a sign on the tent itself saying “Rent this tent for your backyard event!” Newspaper articles and posters are effective, but don’t forget to approach local radio and television stations about public service announcements for the show—particularly in smaller markets. Social media is another avenue to promote the Soldier Show. “In the few months I have had U.S. Army Fort Carson on Facebook, we now have over 2,000 fans, and not all are from the 18 | P E R S P E C T I V E S Summer 2010
installation,” said Douglas Rule, the Public Affairs Command Information Chief at Fort Carson, Colo. “We’re also using Twitter. If you have video on YouTube, let the people know so they can link it on their sites. The same goes for photos on Flickr.” Rule also uses CSFreshInk.com, “where small talk is a big deal.” It is produced by The Gazette, the daily newspaper in Colorado Springs. The Denver Post has a similar site called YourHub.com, an on-line newspaper of sorts that is becoming increasingly popular. “We can do stories – they call them blogs – right on major news sources’ websites,” Rule said. Incorporate side campaigns, such as the Army Family and Community Covenants, Comprehensive Soldier Fitness, and I. A.M. STRONG—the latter two of which are 2010 U.S. Army Soldier Show sponsors—to give another angle to the pre-event coverage. Play snippets on garrison television programming, or run your own PowerPoint™ or video presentations on large screen TVs wherever people are standing in line at facilities. Better Opportunities for Single Soldiers is a big supporter of the Soldier Show. Get them involved by asking them to pitch in and help promote the show through their communications channels. The local Family Readiness Support Assistant should also be called upon to help promote the event. “Go to the lead person on top of all those garrison FRSAs,” Schaffner said. “I e-mail her every press release and every flier – getting information to her digitally – and then she shoots it out to all the other brigades, which goes to the battalions, which goes to the companies, which gets out to the FRG leaders, and they send it on to their POCs.” “Who makes the decision about what the Families are going to do? The spouses do,” Schaffner explained. “So all my data about all my events is going out to the spouses at home in their in-box by sending it to one person, and that’s the lead FRSA because she has the connections to all those FRG leaders via e-mail. It goes out like crazy. Pretty cool stuff. You just have to know who that person is and
SPC David Plasterer of Camp Hovey, Korea, and PFC Andrew Clouse of Fort Gordon, Ga., perform “Walking on Sunshine” during rehearsal at Wallace Theater on Fort Belvoir, Va. Photo by Tim Hipps, FMWRC Public Affairs
now we just say ‘first-come, first-served,’ and they start lining up out the door. We have to have fire department and police support all around our theater for traffic MARKETING TIPS FOR PROMOTING THE control and to make sure the line is not out S O L D I E R S H O W O N Y O U R I N S TA L L AT I O N in the street. It’s huge,” Schaffner added. After all, it is a free show, and where • Cross-promote with other Family and MWR programs on your garrison. offered, concessions are usually affordable. • Feature local cast and crew members in articles, posters and advertisements. When it comes to concessions, consider offering them discounted or • Run stories or photos in the garrison paper every week before the show, up to free: what better way to lure away diethree weeks in advance. hard fans of major pizza chains than with • Use social media to reach the younger audiences. samples and coupons for the on-post • Remember, not everyone knows what the show is. Educate your customers. establishments? Do not forget to lean on the Defense • Invite recruiters: Encourage them to invite potential recruits or local JROTC Commissary Agency and Army and Air units. Force Exchange Service to help promote • Ask locally-owned radio stations or local cable stations to run PSAs. the show in stores and gas stations on post. • Use major media’s smaller outlets—including online calendars and blogs. Ask to have the show announced over the intercom to shoppers. • Involve the local Family Readiness Group leaders. “This year, for the first time, we’re • Offer free or discounted concessions. putting up a poster in all of the AAFES • Put up posters everywhere, including AAFES, the Commissary and franchised facilities, funded and distributed from retail and food activities on post. headquarters,” Pollard said. “That’s something new. But local marketers can • Ask off-post civilian establishments to display posters. take it a step further, especially if they’re • Use relationships with sponsors. willing to do the leg work.” When the Soldier Show is coming, customers shouldn’t be able to walk into a Family and MWR facility anywhere on post without seeing a poster,” Pollard “… people don’t make decisions about what they are going to do said. “It takes time, and effort, and a little until they see if something better is going to come along, so you’ve money to print the posters, but it’s worth got to keep hitting them with it in the 48 hours prior to the event.” the effort—especially if you use this as an opportunity to cross promote other Family and MWR programs and activities. Off-post businesses will also proudly Melissa Schaffner, Marketing Director, Fort Campbell display Soldier Show posters. The use of electronic marquees to greet people as they make them a friend. It’s about relationship building.” drive onto nearly every installation is another great way to promote VIP performances should be pitched as such, but don’t forget to the Soldier Show. Of course, there is always word of mouth. make sure the rest of the community is still fully aware of the “We underestimate a personal invitation,” Pollard said. “Having opportunity. Don’t offend or frighten away people by making a big employees personally invite customers is huge – and don’t forget to deal about the VIP treatment, and never list seating as being “limited.” use RecTrac to send customers a ‘Save the Date’ message.” If a potential patron is waffling on attending, the perception of an Bottom line: it is up to you and yours to help pack the house. overflow crowd and/or limited seating will sway the decision against you can relax and enjoy the show, all the while knowing you Then you. did your part to support the U.S. Army Soldier Show and your other Schaffner learned this lesson the hard way. installation Family and MWR programs, too. “We have a 700-seat theater and we usually get three shows out of “It’s a free night out,” Schaffner concluded. “And you feel good the Soldier Show and we are pretty much full every time.” Schaffner about your country. Hooah!” said. “In the past, we ticketed it by giving out free business card-sized tickets through our Leisure Travel office in the main PX so people knew they had guaranteed seats. “But people took tickets and then something better came along and they didn’t go, and that left empty seats. So instead of ticketing,
For more information visit www.mwrbrandcentral.com
Summer Summer2010 2010 PPEERRSSPPEECCTTI IVVEESS || 19
Fort Benning Rolls Out Operation Excellence Donna Hyatt Ft. Benning Marketing
MG Michael Ferriter explains the importance of Operation Excellence during a Family and MWR employee training session at Fort Benning. Courtesy photo
ort Benning’s Family and MWR Directorate recently rolled out Operation Excellence, providing managers and key personnel an initial one-day intensive training session geared toward providing first-class service. Following a philosophy of leadership, teamwork and problem-solving resulting in continuous improvement, Operation Excellence focuses on the needs of the customer by empowering employees and optimizing existing activities. Providing excellent service to Soldiers and Families falls right in line with Fort Benning’s Commanding General, MG Michael Ferriter’s post mission priorities of enhancing the quality of life for Soldiers and Families, operating in a climate of teamwork, discipline, standards and safety, while demonstrating inspired leadership.
20 | P E R S P E C T I V E S Summer 2010
“When I go into any place on Fort Benning, whether it’s a training site, shoppette, one of the clubs or wherever I go, I always look at that place from the eyes of a Private,” said Ferriter, speaking to members of one training session. “These men and women are the best in the country and so are you. They deserve dignity and respect, energy and enthusiasm from our actions. I also want you to realize that the day is more fun when we’re having fun.” By stressing the need to continually improve by forging a stronger teamwork atmosphere, Operation Excellence relies heavily on customer feedback. The Interactive Customer Evaluation (ICE) system is strongly promoted on post. “We’ve had ICE, Mystery Shoppers and detailed service guidance for years,” said Al Gelineau, Fort Benning’s Family and MWR
Director, “but Operation Excellence is far more comprehensive than any training we’ve ever held before.” Mystery Shoppers, or anonymous community members who evaluate and report on service they receive from garrison Family and MWR programs, have been an intergral part of Fort Benning’s MWR program. Following the “shop,” evaluators complete an electronic report that compares the customer’s evaluation to comparable commercial establishments and provides the results to the garrison. Empathy and providing service beyond the norm is stressed repeatedly throughout the training. Operation Excellence emphasizes continuous improvement which not only develops quality human relations but also reduces operational cost and waste, without affecting quality and timely delivery of the products and services. According to Sherri Coreano, Fort Benning’s first Customer Service Coordinator, the initial session trained approximately one tenth of Fort Benning’s 850+ Family and MWR personnel. Centrally funded by FMWRC and strategically placed across 30 Army garrisons, the goals of the Family and MWR Customer Service Program are increased customer participation and satisfaction, higher employee job satisfaction, retention of high-performing employees and continued employee engagement and commitment. Immediate plans are to have every Family and MWR employee on post take part in the initial training by the end of the calendar year. Additional training and a Family and MWR Employee and Customer Covenant signing are projected to occur later in the year. For more information contact Donna Hyatt, Fort Benning Marketing Office, firstname.lastname@example.org
Production still from the Stable Theater production, “Emma.” Photo courtesy of the Stable Theater
“Our volunteers sometimes lose themselves here; they enjoy just immersing in the work. People tell me they feel at home and welcome here. I think because we offer a creative freedom people don’t find very easily in their everyday lives.” Jack Austin, Entertainment Director
Award-winning Stable Theater Brings Broadway to Germany By Simon Hupfer USAG Bamberg, Marketing
and Rob McIlvaine FMWRC Public Affairs
he U.S. Army Garrison Bamberg Stable Theater is known for its award-winning productions. During last year’s Tournament of Plays Awards Ceremony, the theater’s March production of “Once on this Island” received 22 nominations and five awards. The Topper golden statues are coveted prizes, awarded annually to individuals and ensembles from Installation Management Command-Europe theaters. About 60 years ago, though, the old brick building held the stables for the prize-winning horses of COL Claus von Stauffenberg’s German 17th Cavalry Regiment while he was stationed there during World War II. Stauffenberg, one of the officers who attempted to assassinate Hitler, was played by Tom Cruise in the film, Operation Valkyrie, produced by United Artists, 2008. Rather than the stamping of hooves on cobblestones, the sounds heard today upon entering might be the tickling of 88s as a pianist runs up and down the scales. With posters and flyers lining the old walls, a visitor passing an office, which could have been a tack room for the cavalry, might hear Jack Austin, Entertainment Director, discussing the cast of the upcoming musical “The King and I” with co-worker James Fredrick. The little jewel case for American theater and musical culture,
then, has two unique histories. “We really exist by about 100 volunteers who support our shows as actors, technicians, set builders and costume designers,” Austin said. Every year he and the ‘Stable Theater Family’, as he calls it, put together four to six shows. “These shows are really our bread and butter,” Austin said. “The most rewarding aspect about my job is that we can do something to impact these Families and Soldiers,” Austin said. “Our volunteers sometimes lose themselves here; they enjoy just immersing in the work. People tell me they feel at home and welcome here. I think because we offer a creative freedom people don’t find very easily in their everyday lives.” The recreational benefit of being part of this creative Family can’t be over-estimated, according to Austin. “We had a Soldier approach me before he left Bamberg. He thanked us effusively, and said we probably saved his life. He had obviously gone through some difficult times, but here, being appreciated among fellow performers helped him; here he succeeded and felt part of a great team,” Austin said. It took Austin some time to realize the importance of appreciating his volunteers as customers, “the second, maybe the first side of my customer base”, as he puts it. The other, of course, is the audience Summer 2010 P E R S P E C T I V E S | 21
Production still from the Stable Theater production of “Once on this Island.” Photo courtesy of the Stable Theater
just recently, the Gospel Tour “Lift Up your Spirit”. that comes to see the shows, to take instrument lessons, or to use the “We documented 24,000 contact hours in the last twelve practice rooms or the new fully equipped recording studio. months—face time with our customers—with a staff of two,” When Austin, 52, became the Entertainment Director for Family Austin said with pride. Being proud of the community’s talent also and Morale, Welfare and Recreation at U.S. Army Garrison manifests itself in the record that Bamberg Stable Theater holds: Bamberg, Germany, in 2001, he came over as a dependant. His wife Thirteen Topper Awards—the U.S. Army’s Oscar for entertainment had accepted a job as a therapist with the Army, so he stayed home productions—decorate the Theater’s entry area for their production and took care of their two daughters. of “Little Women” in 2007. “I was actually ‘Mr. Mom’ at that time,” Austin said. The seed for the high quality standard was planted partly by the As a certified architect and operations director of a mid-sized First Infantry Division Band stationed in Bamberg until 2006. But design firm, he was involved in designing performing arts theaters the talent came from outside the band, before around Philadelphia. On occasion, he also Thirteen Topper Awards— and since. played the piano, bass or percussion in local “We are always awed by the talent that theater productions. His skills as musician, the U.S. Army’s Oscar for comes through Bamberg. And just when it designer and carpenter were welcomed at the entertainment productions— seems so many are moving out, a new group theater in Bamberg where he volunteered for decorate the Theater’s entry arrives. We are working hard to keep the good about a year before applying for his current area for their production of reputation we have built since shortly before I position. “Little Women” in 2007. arrived. In fact, one of our own, CPT Donald “Steven Schwartz’s “Pippin” was the first Williamson, won 2nd place in the 2009 show I saw on Broadway, the one that lit my fire for musical theater. So it was also the first show we did here in Operation Rising Star,” Austin said. Bamberg when I took charge of the entertainment operation,” Austin When reaching out for new performers for the Stable Theater said. “The show was a success and a rewarding experience.” Family in the Bamberg community, he reveals his recipe for success: Today, organizing and running special events like the Soldier “It’s not so much the number of programs and the amount of Show or 4th of July celebrations also fall within his and assistant money you spend on your productions. It’s providing the opportunity James Fredrick’s lane, as well as taking care of the bands that tour and the freedom for people who meet here to create something great military installations, including artists such as ‘Crunk,’ rapper LiL together.” Jon, country rock singer Edwin McCain, fun punk band LIT and, For more information: StableTheater@eur.army.mil 22 | P E R S P E C T I V E S Summer 2010
Youth Baseball Team Adopts Deployed Lieutenant as Honorary Coach Reprinted with permission National Organization for Youth Sports
s a disabled veteran of the United States Army, Tom Melani is always looking for ways to show his support to deployed military personnel overseas. That is why, when he got the idea from the National Alliance for Youth Sports (NAYS) to adopt a deployed military member from his community to serve as his team’s honorary coach, he acted quickly to get his team involved. Melani had already become friendly with Bryan Schmidt, a friend of his neighbor who happened to be a First Lieutenant serving in Iraq with the U.S. Army, and was eager to show his appreciation any way he could. Melani named Schmidt the “Honorary Military Coach” of his 7- to 8-year-old Rookie Dodgers from the Longwood, Fla., Babe Ruth baseball league. Along with receiving care packages full of useful supplies and being included on all team emails, “Coach Schmidt” has been communicating with the Rookie Dodgers through the team’s Facebook group, where he receives game recaps and updates on everyone’s progress. “Bryan is good friends with my neighbor and has become a friend of mine,” said Melani. “He was selected after I talked about this with my neighbor and we thought that Bryan would benefit from our support. He was deployed to Iraq soon after getting married last year.” In an effort to provide support and boost morale to deployed individuals overseas, NAYS has been urging its member communities to recognize local individuals who are deployed overseas by adopting them as an honorary coach and sending team updates and care packages throughout the season. This practice is especially meaningful for youth sports coaches or parents who may have been deployed midseason – or in
Melani’s case, for a friend from the local community. “The team and parents have embraced this wonderful initiative and they are enjoying learning about what Coach Schmidt is doing over there for our country,” Melani said. The Rookie Dodgers have already sent Coach Schmidt two care packages, which included candy, beef jerky, a baseball, granola bars, chips, baby wipes, gum, personally written letters from the team and a team jersey with his name on it. In fact, the team is collecting so many goods that three more packages are scheduled to be shipped “We want to spread the goodies out,” Melani said. Melani added Schmidt’s name to the Rookie Dodgers team banner as their “Honorary Military Coach,” which they hang on the dugout for their games. They also hang a picture of Coach Schmidt in the dugout so that he is with them during games. Both honored and humbled by the actions of Melani and his youngsters, in return Schmidt sent each team member an Iraqi postcard, a handwritten letter and a 100 Iraqi Dinari note – which is equivalent to about 25 cents. “He also mentioned the program to his platoon sergeant and asked if we could adopt some of the younger Soldiers who could use a morale boost,” Melani said. This community-wide effort provides a unique way to stay in touch with deployed individuals, as well as provides teams with a meaningful and productive activity. Melani and his Rookie Dodgers are setting such a wonderful example throughout their community that they are motivating other teams in their league to participate as well. Longwood Babe Ruth provides baseball, T-ball and softball for more than 700 boys
and girls living in the cities of Longwood, Lake Mary, Oviedo and Sanford. “My goal is to get 100 percent participation from our league,” Melani said. “I have contacted a local National Guard Commander to gather the names of more Soldiers who recently were deployed to Iraq. As soon as they settle in and send their addresses, I will be passing the names out to each team to give them the opportunity to participate.” NAYS encourages all of its chapters follow the lead of the Rookie Dodgers of Longwood Babe Ruth by supporting a
“The team and parents have embraced this wonderful initiative and they are enjoying learning about what Coach Schmidt is doing over there for our country.” Tom Melani
deployed individual deployed individual from fro their community. This wonderful initiative is just another example of how positive youth sports can not only be beneficial for participating youth, but also for entire communities.
For information on how to adopt a deployed service member from your community contact the National Alliance for Youth Sports (NAYS) at (800) 688KIDS or email email@example.com
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Army Recreation Excellence: Why You Should and Can Achieve Accreditation by Ronald Locklar, Matt Enoch, MPA, CPRP, and Mark Wicker
he Commission for the Accreditation of Park and Recreation Agencies (CAPRP) is a program administratively sponsored by the National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA). According to the NRPA, CAPRA accreditation is “a credible and efficient means” for recreation agencies, including those within the Department of Defense, to ensure they are achieving their goals “...while providing assurance to the public that the agency meets national standards of best practice.” There are currently 90 accredited park and recreation agencies in the United States, including four under the Department of Defense, all of which are Army Community Recreation Divisions: Fort Leavenworth, Ks., Fort Carson, Colo., Fort Knox, Ky., and
“We were looking for a way to benchmark our operations with those of municipalities to provide credibility and consistency. The CAPRA accreditation process provided the opportunity to measure our operations using the same national standards as those used by municipal recreation.”
Marcy Stennes, ACSIM
U.S. Army Garrison Hawaii. According to the NRPA, national standards for accreditation were developed in 1989 by a special committee, and the CAPRA was created in 1993 to administer the accreditation program. An adaptation of the standards specific to the Army was approved in 1999. In 2008, a similar set of 24 | P E R S P E C T I V E S Summer 2010
standards was approved for all Department of Defense agencies. Marcy Stennes, who played a pivotal role in spurring the Army’s involvement with CAPRA, recalls: “We began the CAPRA accreditation process for the Community Recreation programs as a follow-on for the Recreation Delivery System (RDS). Since the RDS was based on many of the principles employed by municipal recreation programs, we were looking for a way to benchmark our operations with those of municipalities to provide credibility and consistency. The CAPRA accreditation process provided the opportunity to measure our operations using the same national standards as those used by municipal recreation, and it served as an indicator of quality services and programs provided by Community Recreation.” Fort Monmouth, Fort Leavenworth and Fort Carson were selected as accreditation pilot sites and completed the process successfully. Fort Carson and Fort Leavenworth recently achieved their five year reaccreditation (Fort Monmouth lost their community recreation program due to the Army’s Base Realignment and Closure initiative). Fort Knox became the first nonpilot site to achieve accreditation in 2007, with USAG Hawaii following in 2009. There are substantial benefits realized from going through the CAPRA process. Some are tangible, such as the improvement in management processes and increase in efficiency, both of which save time and money. Some are more intrinsic, like the increase in pride your team members experience. Randy Moore, Director of Family and MWR at Fort Knox, Kentucky, says, “I knew, even before we went through the
CAPRA process, that we had a very solid community recreation program. However, I was pleased at all of the benefits the process rendered; our efficiency, customer service, team member pride, and management processes improved to a degree we would not have seen had we not challenged ourselves to become accredited. You owe it to yourself as a recreation professional, your team members and your community to meet the CAPRA standards and achieve accreditation.” Our customers deserve the best we can offer. The seal of accreditation is stamped only on agencies that have proven to meet a specified standard of quality and efficiency. Community members are not lacking in appreciation for solid, professional use of their resources. Another important factor to consider is credibility amongst our peers. An increase in funding is not a promise of accreditation. However, when competing for limited garrison or region resources for projects, allocators look for reasons to approve certain projects over others. Accreditation could become a contributing factor in such decisions. Accreditation has certainly factored into the annual Army recreation awards program; the past two awardees for Large Installation Program of the Year have been the two most recent recipients of the CAPRA seal. Other Family and MWR programs, There are currently ninety accredited park and recreation agencies in the United States, including four under the Department of Defense, all of which are Army Community Recreation Divisions: Fort Leavenworth, Ks., Fort Carson, Colo., Fort Knox, Ky., and U.S. Army Garrison Hawaii.
Soldiers participate in a Warrior Adventure Quest activity at Schofield Barracks, Hawaii. Photo courtesy of USAG Hawaii
including Child, Youth and School Services and Family Programs, team with Community Recreation to provide the array of programs and services for which our communities rely. While one cannot claim a higher level of significance than another, as we each provide critical programs and CYSS and FP are each required to achieve and maintain accreditation at the installation level. According to Alecia R. Grady and Stan Lawson from Family Programs at the headquarters level, accreditation “…ensures consistency in programs and service delivery at all ACS Centers throughout the Army. Soldiers and Family members can except to receive the same level of service, whether they are at a small, medium or large installation.” CYSS and ACS require accreditation because their services are recognized as so important that it is critical to ensure they are being delivered at such a specified level of quality at the installation level. Community Recreation leaders at the installation should see the same value in their programs and services. Does your garrison have a great recreation program that meets the needs of the community at a high level of quality? Until you validate your Community Recreation Division against the CAPRA standards, there is no sure way to know. Achieving accreditation will allow you the privilege
of promoting to the community that your CRD is as fundamentally solid as any other recreation agency in the country. According to COL Matthew T. Margotta, USAG Hawaii Garrison Commander, “as every operational commander is taught early in his career… you must have the ability to ‘see yourself.’ You must fully understand; what are your capabilities, what are your strengths, what are your weaknesses, and most importantly in the Garrison business, are you providing the services and support that your Soldiers, Families and community members need and desire? The CAPRA accreditation process did that for us. “It allowed for an in-depth look at every service, every support program and every initiative that we offered,” he continued. “It made us ask all the right questions: Is it needed? Is it wanted? Is it value added? Are we meeting our community’s expectations? “The answers to these questions are now helping us shape our programs to do what every customer service organization should do… meet the needs of their customers,” Margotta said. It is not possible to achieve accreditation without the involvement of team members across the CRD. CAPRA provides a tremendous training opportunity for future leaders, as we rely on them to create SOP’s, locate documentation, write answers to
standards, assist in the hosting of official visitors and accomplish whatever else is required. When accreditation is granted and the “CAPRA Crystal” is brought home, they will feel a sense of pride. Your team members will recognize the CAPRA seal in their flyers and in their facilities as something they helped achieve. They will serve as proud promoters in explaining what that symbol means when your community members inquire about it. “The second, and equally important benefit to the CAPRA accreditation process, was its usefulness as a professional development tool for our employees,” Margotta said. “Over the past several years, we at USAG Hawaii have made a concerted effort to encourage an environment of ‘fresh ideas’ in staffing our Family and MWR programs. We are bringing in new people who bring with them innovative ideas and an abundance of energy. This has turned out to be a tremendously powerful initiative and reinvigorated the Family and MWR Directorate.” “The downside to this is that many of these new employees are un-trained or unaware of the many business and program aspects of our service. For example, they don’t know how the system works,” he continued. “By going through the very detailed CAPRA accreditation process that looks at not only every program you offer, but how you do it from a business and efficiency standpoint, the education provided to the newest members of our workforce was invaluable. In essence, we created an ability to ‘grow our own’ leaders through this process.” Going through this process will improve not only the CRD, but the entire Family and MWR Directorate. The CRD staff can review, evaluate or renew outdated SOP’s, policies, regulations and other guidance. The staff also develops a plan for promoting the benefits of recreation programs and services. Summer 2010 P E R S P E C T I V E S | 25
This plan, if executed properly, will serve to feed community members and leadership the truth of the importance of CRD. Although training requirements abound, leaders must ensure employee training plans, such as individual development plans, are in place and current. For multiple aspects of CRD operation, ensure you are doing the right things and that they are being done correctly. Much like cleaning a cluttered closet, CAPRA helps to identify procedures, policies, facilities and equipment in need of change. A more efficient CRD will result, which will allow for a reallocation of time and money to meet the community’s expectations. As professional achievements go, there is great satisfaction in successful accreditation of your CRD. You will have earned the right to bear the seal, wear the pin and join an elite group of recreation professionals. Perhaps the greatest feature of successful accreditation is the opportunity to recognize your team members who made it happen. Very few opportunities exist that will allow your team members the moment to celebrate like champions—CAPRA achievement is one. When you commit to achieving CAPRA, you will not be alone. Representatives from other accredited installations can help. They
“Recreation for the Army is not just a luxury, it is mission essential. We are helping our customers, the men and women who defend our freedom, maintain mental alertness, emotional stability, physical readiness, spiritual completeness and a well-balanced life.”
Krystal McGee, Special Events and Program Team Director at Fort Leonard Wood
most likely will share files, answer questions, possibly conduct a site visit, or whatever they can do to help you. Representatives from FMWRC will conduct a site visit to ensure you are ready for the official visit. Any question or uncertainty you may have has most likely been raised and successfully addressed in the past. We’re all together in this and there is no need to reinvent the wheel, so rely on the experience of accredited CRDs. One of the more challenging aspects of the CAPRA process is the uncertainty in knowing if the prepared answers and supporting documentation are going to be accepted by the official visitors. In debating what will work with the other team members,
A young Family member learns how to swim during summer camp at Fort Bragg. MWR File Photo
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significant time may center on figuring out what will and will not be accepted, rather than what really addresses the requirements of the standard. Much of this worry can be rested by simply relying on precedent. What has worked to satisfy the threshold of acceptance at one installation will work at another. We are unique, yet much the same. CAPRA, for Army Recreation, is no longer an unknown frontier. It has been explored and the map to success is available. In serving the Army, it may seem like there is a regulation for everything, which frustrates many of our ideas and initiatives. However, it gives us a significant advantage with CAPRA because many of the standards can be addressed by simply citing Army Regulations, DoD Directives, or Field Manuals. The skills necessary to achieve accreditation are not exclusive to your CRD leadership. Sufficient talent for writing, research and problem solving rests in the front lines at your physical fitness centers, recreation programming team, aquatics center, recreation center, etc. Tap into this wealth of talent and you will likely be pleased at the support you get for the CAPRA effort or any other important challenge in which the CRD is engaged. In summary, the CAPRA process consists of writing narratives that explain how your CRD meets each of the nearly 150 standards—and providing documentation that supports the narratives. The narratives are compiled into a self-assessment report. Official visitors stay at the installation for a few days to review narratives and supporting documentation. They produce a report for the CAPRA board to review. The board then relies heavily upon your input in making the decision to grant accreditation. CRD representatives sit before the CAPRA Board at either the annual NRPA Mid-Year Legislative Forum or the annual NRPA Congress and Exposition, at which Accreditation has certainly factored into the annual Army Recreation Awards Program. The past two awardees for Large Installation Program of the Year have been the two most recent recipients of the CAPRA seal.
time accreditation is confirmed or denied. CAPRA requires a stern commitment— there will be extra time outside the bounds of the typical workday for those involved with the process. However, this is not a good excuse to forgo the benefits of pursuing accreditation. “Recreation for the Army is not just a luxury, it is mission essential. We are helping our customers, the men and women who defend our freedom, maintain mental alertness, emotional stability, physical readiness, spiritual completeness and a well-balanced life. We can’t offer anything less than the best services if we are going to sustain our country’s finest and their Families,” said Krystal McGee, Special Events and Program Team Director at Fort Leonard Wood. “CAPRA accreditation is the measuring tool for recreation,” McGee said. “It is helping us to identify practices and processes that need improvements as well as validating our programs and services. It will hold us accountable to meeting our customer’s needs. The process is all about promoting teambuilding among our staff and giving them buy-in to provide the best customer service possible. I expect CAPRA will not only give us credibility, but will help us be a highly functioning organization with the highest quality programs.” It is best to begin with a commitment from all involved to see the process through to the end. For that decision to be made, you must complete a thorough review of the nearly 150 standards and an assessment of where the CRD stands in meeting the standards. It is not necessary to be able to meet every standard at the time the process begins, but it is crucial that you create a realistic timeline to ensure completion of all necessary work in time for the official visit. For example, the CRD may not have a community inventory, which is a requirement of one of the standards. However, you will have several months to complete one and produce it as evidence of compliance with the standard. What must be avoided is beginning the process while having too many things to create in order to be in compliance. If the CRD is not ready, it is best to hold off on pursuing CAPRA until the sufficient policies, documents, plans, etc., are in place.
Once you make a commitment, submit a preliminary application, which includes a fee to CAPRA. FMWRC will be a partner in this, as their CR staff will assist in completing the application and provide funds. Once the application is submitted, the CRD has twenty-four months to achieve accreditation. The next step is to develop a plan for success. This plan will need to detail the process for writing narratives, how to organize supporting documentation, who will be responsible for which standards, etc. Do not begin addressing standards and gathering documentation without a plan. This process is very detailed and requires focus. After completing narratives and compiling supporting documentation, publish and distribute the official CRD selfassessment report to CAPRA, the official visitors, and FMWRC for review. You will be asked to submit the self assessment several weeks in advance of the official visit to give the visitors a chance to review it and notify you if there are any serious problems. Next is the official visit. NRPA selects the official visitors—usually three. One experienced visitor is chosen to serve as the visit chair. In previous Army official visits, FMWRC provides one visitor. Several weeks prior to the visit the chair will contact you to begin coordinating logistical requirements. They will review files and documentation and will give you the opportunity to address their questions or concerns. When they are finished with the review, they will meet with you to report their findings. If the visitors do not have any major concerns, the final step is to attend the next accreditation hearing. This is where the CAPRA Board will make the decision to grant accreditation, accredit with conditions, defer their decision, or deny accreditation. Once accredited, the CRD must submit an annual report to CAPRA and complete a re-accreditation every five years. Fort Knox was the first non-pilot site to pursue and achieve accreditation. They identified accreditation as an objective of their Recreation Delivery System (RDS) strategic plan, but did not start the process until they received a management trainee who took it on as his major project in February
2007. The management trainee served as the project leader and worked exclusively on writing answers to the standards and locating supporting documentation. Because of the expedient nature in which the work was being competed, the decision was made to schedule the official visit for July, which would allow the Fort Knox CRD staff to present their formal accreditation request to the CAPRA Board of Directors at the NRPA Annual Congress in September. Sandy Nordenhold, FMWRC Community Recreation Chief and Mike DeRose, Southeast Region Recreation Program Manager, came to Fort Knox for a pre-visit in June. Even though all of the work had not been completed before the pre-visit, Nordenhold and DeRose reviewed the files and provided feedback on how to improve the answers and documentation. Between the pre and official visits, a core team comprised of the project leader, CRD Chief, CRD Program Analyst, and the RDS Team Lead met several times to review each of the nearly 150 files and collectively improve them until everyone agreed with the final versions. The three official CAPRA visitors reviewed Fort Knox’s work and determined it ready for CAPRA review. At the NRPA Congress, the CAPRA Board of Directors granted the Fort Knox CRP official accreditation. USAG Hawaii made the decision to pursue CAPRA in December 2008 with the intent of achieving accreditation at the October 2009 NRPA Congress. Accreditation had long been an objective of the CRD Chief, and after discussing the opportunity and what it entailed with his CRD’s leaders, they commenced the journey. There are very close ties between the USAG Hawaii and Fort Knox CRDs and there was much dialogue between the two throughout the process at USAG Hawaii. However, there were also many differences in the strategy employed. The biggest difference was that the work was decentralized to a much greater degree. The person who led the effort at Fort Knox took a position with USAG Hawaii as the Recreation Center Program Manager, and was again appointed as the CAPRA Project Manager. Summer 2010 P E R S P E C T I V E S | 27
A Fort Knox Soldier goes potato bowling at the Shamrock Shackfest. Rocker II Club, Fort Knox, KY Photo by Jo Beth Adkins
However, at Fort Knox, CAPRA was his only job. In this case, he had a full-time job running a recreation center, so it was necessary to delegate the standards to a group of highly capable CRD team members, which became the CAPRA Team. The CAPRA Team met weekly between January and May to review the work progress. At each meeting they went through as many standards as possible to review and collectively approve narratives and documentation. The team finished the self-assessment report in early May and requested a June official visit. The CRD Chief, CAPRA Project Manager, and Garrison Commander met with the CAPRA Board at the NRPA Annual Congress in October and received official accreditation. The presence of the Garrison Commander at the accreditation and his support throughout the process was a remarkable example of buy-in to the CAPRA process at the very top of installation leadership. Buy-in from the Family and MWR Director and Garrison Commander is key to success. There is a significant amount of information and assistance needed from other Family and MWR divisions and Garrison offices. They are important 28 | P E R S P E C T I V E S Summer 2010
partners in delivering recreation programs and services. Hopefully, most of the requests made for assistance with CAPRA will be met with a “no problem” attitude. However, in some instances you may experience resistance. For that reason, the Family and MWR Director or Garrison Commander must support the effort enough to be willing to clear such obstacles. In making the case for CAPRA support to leadership, present the numerous benefits the process will yield. Promote improvements in efficiency, team unity, improvement of programs and services for the community, and the establishment of professionalism and credibility. Convince them that this process requires tremendous commitment and support, but the payoff will exceed the investment. Give leadership and visitors what they want and expect. For example, if a standard requires you to have a rock in a box, you should write a simple narrative explaining that you have a rock in a box. If you don’t already have a rock in a box, find a rock, put it in a box and make it available as evidence of compliance with the standard. Do not go out and purchase a gold nugget, place it in an expensive box and wrap it up in ribbons
and bows with the hopes of impressing the visitors. They just want to see a rock in the box. On the other hand, keep in mind that the visitors are very experienced personnel. Do not attempt to pass anything off other than legitimate examples of bona fide compliance with the standards. No matter how much documentation and evidence you provide, if it doesn’t meet the standard, it will not pass. Frequent and close coordination is necessary between you, FMWRC and the visitors in arranging travel and lodging. FMWRC will prepare travel orders and you will need to work with them on scheduling their fights and ensuring their tickets get issued by the government travel office. Do not over schedule the visitors for activities while they are at your installation. You want to prepare activities for them, such as facilities to visit and places to eat, but you must be flexible. Their number one priority will be reviewing your files and writing their report. Preparing for the official visit is much like recreation program planning; you must be ready to adjust when things don’t go as planned. For example, if your team members are having difficulty coming to agreement on how best to address a specific standard, prepare two sets of answers and documentation. If an official visitor disagrees with one way it was answered, another answer will be ready. The journey through the process that leads to accreditation promises benefits such as increases in efficiency, team member spirit, credibility, validity, and improvements in management processes. It is a feat that is entirely achievable with the resources available and the willingness of other installations to lend a hand. It is a professional responsibility to meet these standards as part of keeping the promise to provide the best recreation programs and services possible.
For more information: Paul Rohler, FMWRC Soldier Programs/Community Recreation Director, firstname.lastname@example.org
Army’s Entertainment Summit Brings Music Industry Pros Together By Rob McIlvaine FMWRC Public Affairs
he Army Entertainment Division recently brought music industry professionals to a round table at the Family and MWR Command for advice on producing quality, cost-effective entertainment. “We’ve asked you to come here today because we’re looking to do things better for the Soldiers,” AED Program Manager, Tim Higdon, told 26 promoters, agents and DoD partners in the entertainment industry, as well as three IMCOM garrison and region representatives. AED wants to make sure Soldiers have the opportunity to be entertained by Soldiers, wants to coordinate opportunities with entertainment resources, streamline the process for execution of available options, explore best practices from industry perspectives, provide expertise and formulated action steps for garrisons, enhance current partnerships and expand options for most efficient and effective delivery methods. In short, AED wants to emphasize the “business” in show business. Gathered together with AED personnel were, among others, DoD partners COL Ed Shock of Armed Forces Entertainment, Karen Fritz of Navy Entertainment and Bernie Rone of the United Service Organization (USO), and industry pros Theresa Randleman of T-Rose Entertainment, Glenn Smith of Glenn Smith Presents, Helen McCue of the Boston Comedy Festival, Terri Elander of Missoula Children’s Theater, Eric Lambert of APCA (Association for the Promotion of Campus Activities), Alycia Lerer of Lerer Media, Al Wash of Al Wash Entertainment, Ari Nisman of Degy Booking International, Douglas Hall of Talent Plus and Dwayne Ulloa of AKA Productions. “Stress on our Soldiers and Families
involved in war and the accumulated stress of nearly nine years of persistent conflict is what keeps the Chief of Staff, GEN George Casey awake at night,” FMWRC Deputy to the Commanding General, J.C. Abney told the gathered entertainment pros. “We have the Army Family Covenant, health counseling, CYSS, but in times of deployment or downtime, the Soldiers and their Families also need entertainment. Our goal is to deliver a quality of life commensurate to the service they are providing those of us lucky enough to have freedom and remain safe in our homes at night,” Abney said. Soldier-generated entertainment traces its origins back to the American Revolution and the Civil War, with camp shows springing up in companies, battalions and other units with volunteer Soldier entertainers.
In 1917, Irving Berlin provided rallying and rousing patriotic music for Soldiers and civilians as troop entertainment became an essential morale booster during World War I. During World War II, draftees provided the talent and inspiration of Berlin’s Broadway Soldier Show, “This Is The Army.” By 1943, Special Services companies prepared scripts for musical revues in booklets entitled “Soldier Shows Blueprint Specials – By the Men… for the Men in the Service.” Today, AED is the largest producer of live entertainment in the world, with Army community theaters staging more than 900 productions annually for audiences totaling a quarter of a million. Soldiers carry on the tradition of “entertainment for the Soldier, by the Soldier” through the Soldier Show, the Army
AED Program Manager, Tim Higdon, listens as COL Ed Shock of Armed Forces Entertainment, makes a point about what Soldiers and their Families are looking for in entertainment. Photo by Rob McIlvaine, FMWRC Public Affairs
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theater touring company BRAVO!, the Army Concert Tour, the USA Express top-40 show band, the Battle of the Bands, Operation Rising Star, Festival of the Arts, and Stars of Tomorrow competitions as part of the Army’s Family and MWR program. “We need the advice of you industry professionals on how we’re doing, so today has been set up as a brainstorming session,” Higdon said. Joe Leavell, Family and MWR Community Recreation’s talent coordinator, mentioned how the program has expanded over the past two years, but with fewer dollars to provide more shows. “We’re looking for best practices so we can tell MG Reuben D. Jones, FMWRC Commanding General, that we’re delivering on the promise of the Army Family Covenant,” Leavell said. “To that end, we’ve taken USA Express downrange and continue to explore possibilities of how to produce it better. Operation Rising Star, which is similar to FOX’s American Idol, is another idea we created to give Soldiers a sense of community. And the Battle of the Bands, something we haven’t had in a few years, is being brought back. These and others add up to 132 productions a year and a lot of what we do is for free, thanks to 200,000 volunteer hours that speak to the quality of our programs,” Leavell said. Glenn Smith, international promoter, gave everyone in the room another reason for why they gathered together. “In this business, we’re always thinking about the Soldier. After listening to Mr. Abney’s introduction about the Army Family Covenant, I have to say that we had no clue about the Family left behind when their husband, wife, son or daughter go downrange to fight. So I want to thank you for this inspiration,” Smith said. Smith has promoted and produced concerts in 44 states and 13 countries, including more than 100 military installations around the world. Specializing in diversity and “revenue generating commercial shows,” he’s had “landmark” tours and engagements with such performers as Garth Brooks, Selena, The Jonas Brothers, Patti LaBelle, Christina Aguilera, Casting Crowns and Will Smith. In 2008, he was nominated 30 | P E R S P E C T I V E S Summer 2010
Sugarland, the award-winning country duo of Jennifer Nettles and Christian Bush, bow to the enthusiastic audience at Redstone Arsenal, Ala. as the night ends during the first in a series of the 2009 Army Concert Tour. Photo by Rob McIlvaine, FMWRC Public Affairs
as “Promoter of the Year” at the Academy of Country Music Awards on national television.levision. In the afternoon, the DoD partners, industry pros and FMWRC representatives broke into two workshops—one led by Tim Higdon, the other by Joe Leavell. Ari Nisman, CEO of Degy Booking International, spoke first. “If the Army takes too long to book an act, the act will go somewhere else,” Nisman said. “So you have to shorten the reaction time by empowering subject matter experts who can make quick decisions on talent and venue use.” Nisman’s company provides and buys entertainment for venues, festivals, colleges, fairs, military bases and corporations around the world. The company also maintains a current, exclusive client base of more than 50 music acts and a handful of celebrities and speaking programs. Others quickly agreed this is necessary. “With the shorter reaction time, though, we would need advanced notice to find sponsors and promote the show,” said Kristen McManus, Deputy Chief of Marketing,
FMWRC. “As an agent, I want to see my acts out there working so rather than looking at an isolated venue, such as a garrison, I want to find other clubs near there where I can book my acts,” Nisman said. “The Army has to have a point of contact, a centralized agency program.am. We need a team in place who can make something happen, one go-to person who has the authority to make things happen,” Higdon emphasized. Many of the industry pros echoed each other, pointing out that venues, such as garrison clubs, need a consistent program, week in and week out. “You need to stick to a genre and present it at the same time each week,” Nisman said. Adding that this will ensure customers come back. If there’s a comedy night or a blues night every Wednesday, then don’t change it. Otherwise, they will look elsewhere to plan ahead for their nights out. Leavell, the Army’s talent coordinator, described how the “entertainment” may also be used to carry a message. “Up until now, we’ve been formulating
many initiatives, such as the I.A.M. Strong Tour,” Leavell said. “Sponsored by the Army’s G-1, this tour was recently delivered to 24 locations in just over eight days in Europe with the message that the Army is concerned about Families and their coping mechanisms.” “The Comics on Duty tour for the FMWRC Business Program’s clubs and theater environments has four comedians delivering clean comedy at 27 garrisons,” he continued. “This is a DoD partnership with the That Guy campaign and Navy Entertainment.” AED has numerous ideas in the development stage: Rhythm and Rhyme incorporates the spoken word with jazz, blues and new soul; Game Show Dance Party incorporates a trivia show with DJ and dance; Theatre Entertainment Program (TENT) is intended to connect with colleges and universities and provide a platform for showcasing Soldier talent, partnering with the Army Band for combos in theatre; and To The Fallen Records, a Warriors in Transition Unit entertainment program, featuring veterans and active duty military performing for Soldiers. The venues exist and are being used. They just need to be used more effectively. The Army has 120 installations across the world with more than 150 food and beverage opportunities for small to medium live entertainment events. In the continental U.S. there are 32 garrisons able to provide large scale outdoor events regularly, and outside the U.S. every garrison has this capability. Connecting them with talent constantly and consistently is the issue. Leavell explained that AED has been brainstorming other ideas which need input, such as the Breaking Artist Tour. “I believe this is an excellent opportunity where the Army can go to the major recording labels and say, ‘you’re already breaking in artists. We could bring them into our demographic at many installations and build your circuit through our clubs, like the Java Cafes springing up.’ We just need your help in making this kind of thing happen,” Leavell said. “We’re hoping to create an event within this type of atmosphere at Ft. Knox and the
City of Monterey, Calif., but can you put your heads together to figure out how we can get sponsors involved who can provide service to our Soldiers and Families,” Leavell asked. “Information sharing is key,” Higdon echoed what became the theme of the day. One important outcome of sharing would be a consistent pay scale for all the acts. “Right now the branches of the military pay different prices for the same talent. So many performers just don’t do that branch. This makes it difficult for us to book our acts,” Nisman said. “We need to level the field so we can have across-the-board, consistent ticket sales at military outlets,” Higdon said. Douglas Hall brought 11 years of entertainment experience as a booker, promoter and venue consultant to TalentPlus Entertainment in 2007. Currently heads a team of agents all major accounts. “I develop tours for performers who really don’t care if they’re working a club or casino that pays a different price. They only care that they’re getting the opportunity to perform for a set price. They understand perfectly that some venues pay more than others. But with me, they see one face and one check. With the military, though, they see one venue, each offering a different price,” Hall said. Hall suggested that an online blog could be developed with a password for all the partners where they could share facts and ideas. “This online communications could provide a talk board so everyone knows what the others are doing and can facilitate the packaging of opportunities, to set up those phone calls and make a tour happen. By the same token, this talk board could help each other not make the same mistakes,” Hall said. Another improvement cited by the industry pros was the fact that the Army isn’t properly selling themselves. “You need to sell your demo to the industry. Tell them that these are your demographics, that these people are the buyers,” Hall added. Alycia Lerer of Lerer Media has worked for more than 25 years in the entertainment
industry, including senior level management experience at Time Warner. Her affiliations with celebrities, public relations firms, media outlets and marketing professionals allow her to produce events within the clients’ needs. “If you sell to the Soldier, you get the Family and then you get the friends of the Family,” Lerer said. “Up until now, we’ve been raising the flag, telling people we’re the Army, and hoping that’s enough. What we need to do is sell the Army better by describing better who we are and what we can provide you,” Higdon summed up. Glenn Smith offered one final idea. “I’ve been sitting here in front of one of your posters advertising the Operation Rising Star and not at all sure what it was about. It didn’t say anything to me. What you need to do is work with some of the stars you’ve been booking for the Army Concert Tour and put them at the top to draw in the reader. Or, set up a deal where someone like Jerry Jones is on the poster and have your singer perform at half time. But keep the message simple,” Smith said. In the past, AED has wanted to film stars looking into a camera for a PSA and reading paragraphs of text. “You can’t do that. You have to catch them in the moment, like when they’re coming off stage, they can point at the camera and give one line that will excite people and make them want to be a part of the experience,” Smith said. MG Reuben D. Jones, Commanding General, FMWRC, thanked the industry professionals as he said, “We have 1.2 million Soldiers making this venue as big as a city. I want to bring things of value to our fighting men and women and their Families.” “The work you’ve done today and the ideas you’ve offered is most appreciated, but we’ll do this again to make sure we’re getting better. After all, Soldiers and Families are my focus and because of you we can provide the entertainment and do things right by them.” The group plans to reconvene, either in November as the Soldier Show ends its tour, or at the Operation Rising Star event later this year.
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Published on Mar 25, 2011
Published on Mar 25, 2011
Family and MWR Professionals Magazine for MWR employees. The Magazine is published world-wide for the more than 32,000 MWR employees. The MW...