News: AFRICOM Command Sgt. Maj. visits CJTF-HOA
Story by Tech. Sgt. Megan Crusher
DJIBOUTI - Army Command Sgt. Maj. Darrin Bohn, senior enlisted leader for U.S. Africa Command, made his first official visit to Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa, this week. U.S. Marine Corps Sgt. Maj. Bonnie Skinner, CJTF-HOA senior enlisted leader, hosted Bohn during his site visit which included touring CJTF-HOA facilities, mission briefings and meetings with HOA enlisted personnel and commanders.
"These types of visits are important so we can get the pulse of service members," Bohn said. "We at headquarters want to know how to make AFRICOM better and we know we need to support the enlisted troops, because they make things happen."
Skinner looked forward to showing Bohn the great work service members are doing every day and was eager to hear the feedback during their time at various work sites, she said.
After Bohn's visit with CJTF-HOA SELs, Navy Master Chief Ronald Zilli emphasized the importance of the visit from two perspectives.
"As a subordinate command it's important to stay connected with leadership at AFRICOM, so we understand what's important to them and stay aligned with changing mission sets," he said. "It's also important for AFRICOM leadership to come here and see conditions on the ground so their decisions are based off first-hand knowledge of the people involved."
Bohn said his most important role as command Sgt. Maj. is to ensure those serving are aware of ARICOM Commander, Gen. David Rodriguez's vision and priorities. He wants to stress the importance of the mission to CJTF-HOA members and remind everyone their role is crucial in accomplishing that mission.
"Our mission here at AFRICOM is to support AMISOM and the troop contributing countries who conduct operations in Somalia," Bohn Said. "I want troops to understand our mission, understand their part in the mission, and work hard every day to accomplish the mission."
Another message Bohn wants to get out to service members is to appreciate working in a joint environment and realize everyone, at all levels, has life experiences and knowledge to bring to the table.
"I've noticed, particularly in joint environments, that in some cases, enlisted members aren't utilized to their full potential," Bohn said. "I want enlisted members to step up, take charge and lead."
Skinner echoed Bohn's sentiments, stating "initiative is the key, take initiative and be proactive."
"It's not about the services we represent, it's about the mission. The AFRICOM mission," Bohn said. "We all work for AFRICOM, and from what I've seen here the troops are motivated and hard working."