1st Battalion 22nd Infantry



1BCT Soldiers Reenlist

November 2008


Number of 1st BCT Soldiers reenlisting in combat zone remains high for second half of OIF 07-09
1st BCT career counselors run command retention program

Sgt. 1st Class Brent Williams
1st BCT PAO, 4th Inf. Div., MND-B

FORWARD OPERATING BASE FALCON, Iraq – The 1st Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, recently paired retention
noncommissioned officers and career counselors to retain the Army’s most qualified Soldiers and supervise retention activities in garrison
while deployed in support of Multi-National Division – Baghdad and Operation Iraqi Freedom 07-09.

With two battalions at more than 100-percent complete and three battalions nearly 70-percent complete in meeting their retention mission,
the Raider Brigade’s career counselors are making considerable headway in their goals to keep initial, mid-career and career Soldiers in the brigade,
the division and the Army, said Sgt. 1st Class Alyce Williams, career counselor for the 1st BCT, 4th Inf. Div.
In fact, the “Raider” Brigade, deployed to the Rashid district in southern Baghdad, reenlisted more than 70 percent of its retention mission
in the first 60 days of fiscal 2009, said Williams.


FORWARD OPERATING BASE FALCON, Iraq – Col. Ted Martin, commander of the 1st Brigade Combat Team,
4th Infantry Division, Multi-National Division – Baghdad, reenlists five members of the Headquarters and Headquarters
Detachment Personnel Security Detachment: Spc. Matthew Cole (left), a cavalry scout from Killeen, Texas; Spc. Jamel Johnson,
an armor crewmember from Fayetteville, N.C.; Spc. Clayton Schmid, an infantryman from Alamogordo, N.M.; Spc. Gary Chafton,
an infantryman from Arkansas City, Kan.; and Spc. Anthony Wagner, an infantryman from Akron, Ohio, Nov. 13
at Forward Operating Base Falcon, located in southern Baghdad. The "Raider" Brigade met more than 70 percent
of its retention goals within the first 60 days of fiscal 2009.

(U.S. Army photo by Sgt. David Hodge, 1st BCT PAO, 4th Inf. Div., MND-B)


The role of the career counselor is to maintain the Army force and to provide the best counseling and offer the best options for Soldiers
whatever their future endeavors may be, said Sgt. 1st Class Paul Thompson, a recruiting NCO, serving as a career counselor
for the 4th Support Battalion, 1st BCT, 4th Inf. Div. Thompson said he believes job security is key for many of the Soldiers,
who have reenlisted during this deployment, but there are many reasons driving today’s Soldiers to stay Army.
“I think the majority of the Soldiers have accepted the fact that Iraq or Afghanistan is going to be part of our lives
for the next however many years; fact is, I think they do identify and like being in the Army,” said Thompson.
The key to “Packhorse” Battalion meeting its retention goals so early is the result of a good leadership foundation
from the battalion commander and command sergeant major to the line unit with the platoon sergeants pushing to make for a successful mission,
said Thompson, who calls Miami home. “The mission is important, but taking care of the Soldier in conjunction with making the mission,
I think the Soldiers recognize that,” he said. “Within 38 days, we were already over the 100-percent aggregate piece,” Thompson said.
“By the 38th day, we accomplished 80 contracts – over 100 percent in each category.” Attached to the 1st BCT, 4th Inf. Div.,
from the U.S. Army Recruiting Command, Thompson said that he has seen much change in the Army since the inception of the Unit of Action,
and the many moving parts continue to grow and change to meet the needs of the mission.

Career counselors have a multi-faceted job, said Staff Sgt. Daniel Andreas, a retention NCO and career counselor
for the 1st Battalion, 22nd Infantry Regiment, 1st BCT, 4th Inf. Div.
In addition to providing retention services for the battalion commander and command sergeant major, Andreas said
that his two-man team is responsible for counseling Soldiers on educational opportunities, miscellaneous benefit programs
and promotion potential. “But of course, at the end of the day, the commander wants to know where we stand,
how much in each of these categories that we accomplish toward our goal,” said the former aviation operations specialist,
who re-classified to recruiter and then career counselor. The battalion-level career counselor and retention noncommissioned officer
also manage the Army’s Bar to Reenlistment Program, the only “down-side” to his job, said Andreas, a native of Albany, N.Y.
Working personnel moves, continuing deployments and accompanying training requirements, an ever-changing operational environment,
such as limiting requirements associated with the Stop/Loss Policy, keep the counselors attuned to their Soldiers’ needs, he said.
“We always know of pending deployment in advance and have to be careful not to reenlist Soldiers into back-to-back deployments,”
Andreas said. “We have to take care of Soldiers.” Even as the 4th Inf. Div. looks to complete its move to Fort Carson
during the next fiscal year, the counselor said he will never stop working to retain quality Soldiers and meet the needs of the Army.
The “Regulars” Bn. of the 22nd Inf. Regt. comprises approximately 25 percent of the brigade’s goals, said Andreas,
who is well on his way to meeting his battalion’s aggregate retention requirements before next September.
“Of course retention and recruiting work together to keep the Army’s end strength where it needs to be at,
so we have the five or six hundred thousand Soldiers we need to make up the U.S. Army,” he added.

Commanders make the Army easy for Soldiers to reenlist, said Staff Sgt. Richard Sayers, an infantryman from Fort Hood, Texas,
who has the additional duty of 1st Bn., 22nd Inf. Regt. retention NCO. Soldiers, who serve in squared-away units
where missions are prepped, platoons are informed and discipline is uniform, are more likely to stay in the Army, explained Sayers.
“Command helped by making a good command climate,” said Sayers, who reached his company’s retention goals during 2007 and 2008.
“I had no problems getting Soldiers to stay Army.” Soldiers who invest time in their units have the opportunity to work with their leaders
and learn from their chain of command, said Sayers.

FORWARD OPERATING BASE FALCON, Iraq – Spc. Brady Dietrich, a transportation specialist from Reedsville, Wis.,
Forward Support Company E, 1st Battalion, 22nd Infantry Regiment, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division,
Multi-National Division – Baghdad, repeats the Oath of Enlistment as recited by Capt. Brian Kalaher, an infantry officer,
from Fort Hood, Texas, assigned to Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 1st "Regulars" Bn., 22nd Inf. Regt.,
Oct. 14 on Forward Operating Base Falcon, located in southern Baghdad's Rashid district. The 1st Bn., 22nd Inf. Regt.,
comprises approximately 25 percent of the "Raider" Brigade's retention mission.

(U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Dennis Winegar, 1st Bn., 22nd Inf. Regt., 1st BCT, 4th Inf. Div., MND-B)


“They all seem to be motivated about being over here and come to the realization that this is part of military service,”
said Staff Sgt. Redonzo Jackson, an ammunition specialist and retention NCO for the 4th Spt. Bn., 1st BCT, 4th Inf. Div.
“Everybody has done their part, and they are continuing to do their part; even though we have made our battalion mission,
everybody is still pushing forward to make the Army 100 percent,” he said. Working for the Soldiers of the 1st BCT’s “Packhorse” Bn.,
has been a great experience during the current deployment, said Redonzo, a native of Columbia, S.C.
“The leadership and the chain of command have been great with assisting us in trying to make sure
that the brigade meets its mission requirements that were set for us,”

Career counselors may be the subject-matter-experts; however, retention is – at all levels of command – a commander’s program,
said Williams. There is no one Soldier responsible for the retention mission, but the charge to maintain Soldier levels
reaches across the entire Army, said Williams, who hails from Asheville, S.C.
“The Soldiers are already loyal to the Army, to defending their nation, but it seems more so in a combat zone,” she said.
“Because in garrison, they’re just doing a job … but here is where the rubber meets the road, and the Soldiers are just so much more patriotic.”
Soldiers deployed to an actual combat zone have greater awareness of how important their job is to accomplishing their mission, explained Williams.
“The Soldiers are much more dedicated,” she said. “They are just much more loyal to me in a combat zone.”

The U.S. Army Human Resources Command works with the deployed personnel to get the type of assignments
a Soldier might not get in garrison, said Williams, who graduated from the University of South Carolina.
While bonuses will decrease a little bit due to the number of Soldiers currently choosing to stay in the Army, a reenlistment bonus
often plays an important factor in a Soldier’s decision to re-up in a combat zone, she added.
“Just about everybody gets a bonus here,” Williams said. “Soldiers get a bonus if not for their particular (military occupational skill);
they get a bonus for being deployed and not just a bonus but a tax-free incentive.”
Soldiers should talk to their leadership about a possible career in the Army, but they should also make a visit to their career counselors
even if they do not plan on re-enlisting, she explained. “At least know what is available,” Williams said
in encouraging Soldiers to find out everything available to them. “At least have all the information needed to make an informed decision,
learn what tools are available and talk it out to make the best possible decision.”


FORWARD OPERATING BASE FALCON, Iraq — Staff Sgt. David Ray, a military policeman from Powder Springs, Ga.,
assigned to Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 1st Special Troops Battalion, 1st Brigade Combat Team,
4th Infantry Division, Multi-National Division – Baghdad, raises his right hand for his career re-enlistment Nov. 7.
Maj. Thomas Clark, a native of Copperas Cove, Texas, and the Infrastructure Coordination Element Team Chief
for the 1st "Phoenix" STB, 1st BCT, served as the presiding officer for the reenlistment
on Forward Operating Base Falcon in southern Baghdad.

(U.S. Army photo by Sgt. David Hodge, 1st BCT PAO, 4th Inf. Div., MND-B)






Home | Photos | Battles & History | Current |
Rosters & Reports | Medal of Honor | Killed in Action |
Personnel Locator | Commanders | Station List | Campaigns |
Honors | Insignia & Memorabilia | 4-42 Artillery | Taps |
What's New | Editorial | Links |