TRADOC Commander challenges CGSC graduates



TRADOC Commander challenges CGSC graduates

In commencement ceremonies on June 14, 2019, at the Lewis and Clark Center, General Stephen J. Townsend, Commanding General of the U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command, challenged the 1,100 graduates of Command and General Staff Officers Course Class of 2019 to do three things – elevate team play, help commanders to reinvigorate mission command, and coach junior officers.

General Stephen J. Townsend, commanding general of the U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command, delivers remarks at the graduation ceremony for the CGSOC Class of 2019 in the Lewis and Clark Center on Fort Leavenworth. (photo by Mark H. Wiggins)

General Stephen J. Townsend, commanding general of the U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command, delivers remarks at the graduation ceremony for the CGSOC Class of 2019 in the Lewis and Clark Center on Fort Leavenworth. (photo by Mark H. Wiggins)

Townsend told the graduating students they were leaving CGSC much better prepared than he was when he graduated from the course 25 years ago. He also said they leave with an excellent professional network of peers and friends. “You can’t even imagine the situations where this network of friends and fellow students will come in handy in years ahead in your career but it will, mark my words,” said Townsend. “Your first responsibility as a professional officer is to master our trade. Your core competency is to fight and win our nation’s wars,” he said.

Major Dana M. Gingrich is congratulated by CGSC Commandant Lt. Gen. Michael Lundy (right), Gen. Stephen J. Townsend, Commander TRADOC, and Michael D. Hockley, Civilian Aide to the Secretary of the Army for Kansas and Chairman of the CGSC Foundation upon being named the General George C. Marshall awardee, the top U.S. graduate for the Command and General Staff Officers Class of 2019. Gingrich also received the General George S. Patton Jr. Master Tactician Award, General Douglas MacArthur Military Leadership Writing Award, and the Lt. Col. Boyd McCanna Harris Leadership Award during graduation ceremonies June 14 at Fort Leavenworth's Lewis and Clark Center. (Photo by Dan Neal)

Major Dana M. Gingrich is congratulated by CGSC Commandant Lt. Gen. Michael Lundy (right), Gen. Stephen J. Townsend, Commander TRADOC, and Michael D. Hockley, Civilian Aide to the Secretary of the Army for Kansas and Chairman of the CGSC Foundation upon being named the General George C. Marshall awardee, the top U.S. graduate for the Command and General Staff Officers Class of 2019. Gingrich also received the General George S. Patton Jr. Master Tactician Award, General Douglas MacArthur Military Leadership Writing Award, and the Lt. Col. Boyd McCanna Harris Leadership Award during graduation ceremonies June 14 at Fort Leavenworth’s Lewis and Clark Center. (Photo by Dan Neal/ArmyU Public Affairs)

Opening the graduation ceremony, Lt. Gen. Michael Lundy, Commandant of the Command and General Staff College said, “Your watch starts again this afternoon when you leave this post. You’re now stewards of our profession and there’s more expected of you by your Soldiers, Sailors, Airman, and Marines and your leaders. I’m absolutely confident that you’re all ready to meet that challenge. Our nation and all the nations that are represented here by our international officers are in great hands.”

A highlight of the ceremony came during the individual award presentations where Maj. Dana M. Gingrich earned four awards. As Mike Hockley, Civilian Aide to the Secretary of the Army for Kansas and Chairman of the CGSC Foundation, was presenting Gingrich with the Lt. Col. Boyd McCanna Harris Leadership Award, Lt. Gen. Lundy briefly halted the proceedings and gathered up the other three awards Gingrich had already been presented and he and Gen. Townsend joined them for a group photo. In addition to the Harris Leadership Award, Gingrich earned the top U.S. student award – the General George C. Marshall Award, the General George S. Patton Jr. Master Tactician Award, and the General Douglas MacArthur Military Leadership Writing Award.

Graduation marks the completion of the 10-month Command and General Staff Officers Course that develops war-fighting and adaptive leadership skills necessary for military officers to be proficient in Unified Land Operations. The Command and General Staff College is an educational center of excellence renowned in the study of leadership, the conduct of joint and combined land warfare, and the application of Joint, Interagency, Intergovernmental, and Multinational organizations to synchronize all elements of power to achieve national objectives.

The graduating class includes mid-career officers from all American military services as well as 110 international officers representing 87 countries and 26 federal government civilian employees. The international graduates received the CGSC International Officer Graduate Badge during a ceremony Thursday, June 13. International military student participation in cooperative military studies in the United States originated at Fort Leavenworth in 1894. Since then, international military students have become an integral part of the Command and General Staff Officer’s Course. More than 8,200 international officers have studied alongside U.S. military and government civilian counterparts at Fort Leavenworth.

In addition to completing the graduate-level course, approximately 150 students earned the Master of Military Art and Science Degree. Students earn the master’s degree by successful completion of the Command and General Staff Officers Course, successful completion of an oral comprehensive exam, and writing and orally defending a thesis based on original research. The College is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools to award the master’s degree.

Class of 2019 Individual Awards

General George C. Marshall Award for top U.S. graduate — Major Dana Gingrich, Infantry
Sponsored by the CGSC Foundation through a gift from the Veterans of Foreign Wars

General Dwight D. Eisenhower Award for top International Graduate — Major Nicolas Stafford, United Kingdom
Sponsored by the CGSC Foundation through a gift from the David G. Beaham Memorial Fund

Major General James M. Wright Master Logistician Award — Major Will Cunningham, Logistics

General George S. Patton Jr. Master Tactician Award — Major Dana Gingrich
Sponsored by the CGSC Foundation through a gift from Col. (Ret.) and Mrs. Doug Tystad

General Douglas MacArthur Military Leadership Writing Award — Major Dana M. Gingrich

Iron Major Award for outstanding Physical Fitness — Major Nicolas Ouimet, Infantry, Male; Major Katie Richesin, Civil Affairs, Female
Sponsored by the CGSC Foundation

Arter-Darby Military History Writing Award — Chaplain (Major) Erik C. Alfsen

Arter-Doniphan Award (Highest GPA in the class) — Major Edward Brady, USAF

General John J. Pershing Award for top graduate in Distance Learning — Major Scott T. Dawe, Armor
Sponsored by the CGSC Foundation

Major General Hans Schlup Award (Award is given to the student who best fostered international relations) — Major Martijn Reuvers, Netherlands
Sponsored by the CGSC Foundation through a gift from the CGSOC Class of 1978

Birrer-Brooks Award for Outstanding MMAS Thesis — Major Greg Hope, Armor
Sponsored by the CGSC Foundation

Civilian Instructor of the year — Dr. Derek Mallett, Department of Military History, Fort Gordon

Military Instructor of the year — Lt. Col. Trent Lythgoe, Department of Tactics

Homeland Security Studies Award (best research in Homeland Security topics) — Chaplain (Maj.) Erik C. Alfsen

Excellence in Joint Forces Warfare Award — Major Jason Jones, Logistics

Father Donald W. Smythe Military History Award — Major Andrew Fair, Strategist

Simons Center Interagency Writing Award — Major Al Zaki, Indonesia
Sponsored by the CGSC Foundation

Lt. Col. Boyd McCanna Harris Leadership Award (best research in organizational leadership) — Major Dana M. Gingrich
Sponsored by the CGSC Foundation through a gift from Gary and Moira Sinise

Brigadier General Benjamin H. Grierson Award for Excellence in Strategic Studies, Major David S.T. Kwek, Singapore
Sponsored by the CGSC Foundation

For more photos from the ceremony see the albums on Flickr:

CGSC Foundation album

CGSC album

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