ISS2 2017

Reservist Magazine is the award-winning official publication of the United States Coast Guard Reserve. Quarterly issues include news and feature articles about the men and women who comprise America's premier national maritime safety and security

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Senior Leadership Puts Focus on Reserve Readiness Submitted by Cmdr. Alex Foos, Division Chief, CG-1313 Over the past year there has been an increasing focus on the Reserve Component and how best to support this critical workforce given the extremely tight budget environment. In particular, the Deputy Commandants for Operations (DCO) and Mission Support (DCMS) have placed Reserve readiness amongst their highest priorities. On January 6, 2017, senior leaders from across the DCO enterprise came together at Coast Guard Headquarters to help shape the direction of Vice Adm. Charles Ray's top six strategic priorities for Fiscal Year 2017, and beyond. Among these priorities is Human Capital Planning: Strengthening the Reserve Force. The DCO focus on the Reserve workforce is strategically aligned with ongoing efforts of the Reserve Component Force Planning Working Group (RCFP-WG), co-chaired by Capt. Gary Jones (CG DCO-84), and Capt. Michael Barton (CG-131). The RCFP-WG is continuing to evaluate what aspect of the Coast Guard's total contingency operations requirements will be allocated to the Reserve Component. These requirements will ultimately inform decisions on the size and composition of the Reserve in the years to come. This operational focus is also tightly aligned with DCMS' efforts to address the barriers to acquiring, training, and retaining the highly skilled workforce needed to meet established requirements across all Coast Guard mission sets. The ability to recruit and train the total force, and the Reserve in particular, has been a key area of concern for Vice Adm. Sandra Stosz who hosted a meeting of key leaders across DCMS, including the Force Readiness Command (FORCECOM), Coast Guard Recruiting Command (CGRC), and Personnel Support Command (CG PSC), to clearly outline the systemic and resource barriers to restoring the Reserve to full strength. Over the next year DCO and DCMS will work hand in hand to; stabilize Reserve Training (RT) resources, manage the Reserve Component as a capability asset to meet surge/mobilization requirements, evaluate alternatives to traditional Reserve recruiting solutions, and better identify and manage limited training capacity (to name a few). Integration of RCFP-WG efforts within these wider DCO and DCMS efforts has helped to greatly increase the visibility of the challenges facing the Reserve and lead to solutions in support of its short-term and long-term needs. The culmination of four years of constant and steady effort has led to significant progress having been made which will enhance Reserve readiness including implementation of the CG Reserve – Training Management System (CGR-TMS), promulgation of Reserve Mission and Vision Statements, and development of a robust Shore Forces Capability Management Framework. This enhanced focus on Reserve needs at the highest levels of leadership is extremely encouraging after several years of necessary but difficult austerity measures. With the support of Senior Leadership, the Reserve Component is poised to remain as ready and relevant as at any time in its 76 year history. your Coast Guard, forever. Whether you stay in for a hitch and get out, screen for a warrant commission, attend ROCI or OCS and become an officer, or even stay in for 20 plus years and advance to Chief, Senior Chief, or (God Forbid) Master Chief, it's yours. And, everyone knows. Seriously, people you don't even know will ask you, personally, about a Coast Guard evolution that took place a continent away from you and expect you to know all about it. They'll congratulate you and thank you for a rescue, commiserate with you when we have an injury, or a death, and ask you what went wrong when we, your Coast Guard, makes a mistake or an error. No one likes to make mistakes. But they happen. Sometimes they are simple technical errors, easily corrected through training, updated instructions, or by fixing a part or a process. Sometimes, they are mistakes of character. These errors are hard to correct, and it's better to try and avoid them if you can. Remember when I said you bought the right and responsibility to become a member of the Coast Guard? Well, I neglected to mention that it's really more of an installment plan. You have to re-earn the right and responsibility every day. You do that by being the best Coast Guardsman you can be. Take pride in the job that you are doing and do it well. It doesn't matter if you're driving the boat in a rescue, standing a radio watch in the command center, chopping orders in the ships office, or waxing the floor in the galley, everything you do matters. Everything we do matters. You must remember that you are responsible for yourself and for your shipmates. If your inner monologue starts with "I don't know if I should be doing this" chances are, the answer is NO. Look out for your shipmates. Don't let them get into a situation that will hurt them, you, or others. This is my personal charge, from me to each of you: Don't let someone get hurt, damage a career, or end a career or life through your inaction. I hold you accountable for the well-being of your shipmates, as you must hold me accountable. Thank you for allowing me to be a part of the process that has led you to this day. Thank you to the families and others in attendance for your past and future support of your Coast Guardsman. Trust me, they need it and appreciate it. And finally, thank you to the Cape May team that gives these outstanding men and women to the fleet. Captain, Master Chief, we will do our best to take care of them and put them to good use. Finally, as I wind this up, I did forget one, important thing. Class 02-17, Welcome to your Coast Guard! ISCM Joe Melton is the Reserve Leadership Development Program Manager in the Office of Leadership (CG-12C). His duties include oversight of Reserve needs and participation in all Coast Guard Leadership training courses, officer and enlisted, serving as the Reserve subject matter expert for the leadership and training community, and as liaison for all senior enlisted leadership courses. 38 RESERVIST � Issue 2 • 2017

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