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This is My Squad

Second Quarter 2020

Empowered Squad Leaders Are Overcoming Social Distancing And Maintaining Fit And Cohesive Squads During COVID-19 Operations

June 10, 2020

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This is My Squad Second Quarter 2020 Cover
Sgt. Maj. of the Army Michael A. Grinston

Member of the Army Team,

First of all, thank you for taking the time to read the first edition of This is My Squad Quarterly. We designed this publication to share lessons from Army leaders who are excelling as they lead their small teams. Our Army is the best in the world because of our People, and we sustain that greatness by serving as members of strong, cohesive teams — like you and your Squad. This quarter, we took a look at some of the ways leaders have kept in touch with their People as we protect the Force from COVID-19. We rely on leaders like those in the stories below every day. They took it upon themselves to develop creative ways to stay engaged with their Soldiers while faced with an unprecedented challenge. They remind us that regardless of whether or not you’re physically coming to work every day, if you’re a leader, you are mission essential.

Remember, no matter at what echelon you serve in our Army, you are a member of a Squad. This is My Squad is for every Soldier, from the Infantry Squad to the S1 shop to Family members, and from the battery command team to Headquarters, Department of the Army. Because this is your program, I want you to be on the lookout for innovative ways leaders in your part of the Army are taking care of their People and accomplishing their Squad’s objectives. I hope to read your story next quarter!

People First! Army Strong!

—Sgt. Maj. of the Army Michael A. Grinston

Staff Sgt. Rico M. Ivy

Staff Sgt. Rico M. Ivy

Position: Senior reconnaissance scout, 1st Platoon, Alpha section leader

Unit: Ace Troop

Organization: 2nd Squadron, 14th Cavalry Regiment

How long assigned as Squad Leader: Nine months

How many in Squad: Eight Soldiers

This is My Squad means any group of individuals I care for either professionally or personally. My role in my squad plays a huge impact on the success and shortcomings in anything we do. I stress every day the importance of understanding that in order to be successful we have to be willing to work together. I teach my Soldiers not to work individually but as a collective unit. From motor pool maintenance to destroying the enemy, if one of my Soldiers is present, we are all present.”

Staff Sgt. Ivy leads physical training

Staff Sgt. SchonEnrique T. Colorado

Staff Sgt. Rico M. Ivy

Position: Sniper section leader
Unit: Headquarters & Headquarters Troop, 8th Squadron, 1st Cavalry Regiment
Organization: 2nd Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division, I Corps
How long assigned as Squad Leader: 13 months
How many in Squad: 13 Soldiers

This is My Squad is as personal as it gets and as an NCO and a father, my role is to teach a concept I have learned through training, physical fitness, job, family, and life events. This concept is, know who you are, what you represent, and what you come back to. For Soldiers to understand this concept and implement it in the Army and in life, it is what keeps a This is My Squad mentality.”


Sgt. 1st Class Rodric Booker

Staff Sgt. Rico M. Ivy

Position: Platoon sergeant

Unit: 135th Quartermaster Company, Special Troops Battalion

Organization: 3rd Infantry Division Sustainment Brigade, 3rd ID

How long assigned as Squad Leader: One year

How many in Squad: 40 Soldiers

“As a leader, it is always important to check on the welfare of your Soldiers, and currently, with so many Soldiers teleworking it is even more so. We have adapted to utilize digital networking services allowing leaders to see, hear and respond to Soldiers while social distancing. We've had to overcome some challenges due to social distancing requirements. The traditional method of gathering the platoon for collective training isn't feasible because we must balance Soldier safety versus training requirements. We are adapting creative methods to overcome those challenges and ensure our Soldiers remain trained and ready. I think we're doing the best we can to ensure our Soldiers are taken care of during this time, because as leaders and especially NCOs we understand accomplishment of the mission and the welfare of our Soldiers is the most important thing we can do.”

Sgt. 1st Class Rodric Booker conducts a meeting with his squad leaders via a video call due to social distancing guidelines

United States Military Academy

West Point

United States Military Academy

Name and Unit: Maj. Christina Fenstermaker and Sgt. 1st Class Michael Mullins, Company H4; Maj. Curtis Bew and Sgt. 1st Class Jacob Miller, Company H3; Maj. Wiley Grant and Sgt. 1st Class Thomas Vanovermeer, Company D2

Organization: Team Leader Academy, U.S. Military Academy at West Point

“Remote leadership training is a learning experience for all of us but will only make us better and more adaptable for our future Soldiers.”


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