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    Sister in Arms program in full effect

    Sister in Arms program in full effect

    Photo By Master Sgt. Shelia Cooper | Col. Michael Lalor and Command Sgt. Maj. Sean Howard, command team for the 1st Armored...... read more read more

    “The Sisters in Arms program is a forum for female Soldiers to help enhance avenues of mentorship and empowerment in order to reach their full potential throughout their career,” said Sgt. Maj. Velma A. Lyons, senior noncommissioned logistician, assigned to the Army Field Support Battalion-Afghanistan, and native of Augusta, Georgia.” “Sisters in Arms is a way to provide a role-model to young women in the military.”

    The importance of this program for young Soldiers is to allow them to meet and bond with senior enlisted Soldiers and officers in the Army. This allows seasoned Soldiers to share their experiences from the Army with the younger generation.
    “This program gives them an opportunity to receive mentorship from noncommissioned officers and officers who have been in the Army for a long time,” said Lyons. “Also by sharing their military experiences of how they overcame many obstacles through adversity and never quitting helped them along the way.”

    Lyons stated that this program is important because it shows the power of courage, honor, integrity, endurance and forgiveness, when building bonds through a mentorship program like this one.
    When junior Soldiers attend programs like this, they gain opportunities to become better Soldiers and a better people through the use of mentorship and leadership building skills.
    “As women, it allows us to share our uphill battles together, our triumphs together and share our successes together,” said Lyons.
    It’s not only about mentorship and leadership, it’s also about caring for and sharing your experiences with service member in a time of need.
    “Learning how to build bonds through mentorship starts with caring, sharing your talents, and sacrificing your personal time for another Soldier,” said Lyons. “By teaching them [young Soldiers] the value of discipline, teamwork and sacrifice can be inherited in every branch of the service. It teaches them to step out of their comfort zone in order to trust and build long-lasting relationships with all branches of the services including our coalition forces while supporting the Warfighters.”

    Col. Michael Lalor and Command Sgt. Maj. Sean Howard, command team for the 1st Armored Division Resolute Support Sustainment Brigade, guest speakers for the meeting, gave opening comments to the more than 30 female service members in the room.

    “First of all, thank you for having me and allowing me to be part of this,” said Lalor. “Thank you for what you do and thank you for your leadership because you provide leadership to our force, so thank you for taking that on and for what you do.”
    During his remarks, Lalor also talked about the power of good leadership.
    “I definitely subscribe to the theory that the most decisive element of power is leadership, on the battlefield or even on the home front, in the Army or when you’re out of it,” said Lalor. “I think that this is very important because what you’re doing here ties into leadership directly in my opinion. Mentorship, fellowship, or just taking the time to care, enables that leadership on the battlefield. You all do that one way or the other. That’s the most important thing that you can bring to this contribution in this forum or any forum.”
    Lalor, a native of Goshen, New York, went on to talk about how his unit fits the description of society.
    “America is a multi-facet society and when you look at this brigade I lead, it’s America, I love it,” said Lalor. “I have been in sustainment units for more than 20 years and this starts my 23rd year in the Army. I will tell you that this is the third sustainment unit that I have lead in Afghanistan; company, battalion and now brigade level, and they have all been units that reflect America and it’s quite the honor to do so. I will tell you that the challenge is that it doesn’t matter what your unit looks like, it is about leadership in the end and how you develop the next generation of leaders and that is how we are all judged in the end.”
    Lalor stated that the most import job that he has on a day-to-day basis as a commander is developing the next generation of leaders and logisticians.
    “I have someone in my office every day that is scheduled for counseling or some type of developmental session and it doesn’t matter who or what, it is the most important thing that I feel like I do every day,” said Lalor. “It definitely gives me the most satisfaction and the most feedback on a day-to-day basis.”
    During the opening remarks Howard, a native of Colorado Springs, Colorado, also said a few words to the group.
    “When I first came into the Army a lot of opportunities open for women back then were not available,” said Howard. “Back then you didn’t have women paratrooper, rangers or commander of support battalions or Special Forces groups and you didn’t have all of these opportunities. I am glad that you Soldiers are getting together to discuss stuff that is pertinent to you all.”
    As the meeting continue, Lyons shared her thoughts with the group.
    “A sister's love is pure and deep not always by blood but by the arms that meet,” said Lyons. “This is sure to happen when we take initiative by improving our thought process from my way to our way as a team. No one does it alone, it takes a programs like Sisters in Arms to help make our women services grow.”



    Date Taken: 07.18.2017
    Date Posted: 07.24.2017 06:11
    Story ID: 242293
    Location: AF

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