DVIDS – News – Whether Engineer or Infantry: Bliss Garrison Changes Responsibility on 9/11


With more than 30 years of service, Command Sgt. Maj. Brian Holschbach, the CSM of outgoing U.S. Army Garrison Fort Bliss, who joined the Army as the 21E Heavy Equipment Operator, passed responsibility to command Sgt. Maj. James Brasher, an 11B infantryman, during the unit change of responsibility ceremony on East Fort Bliss, Sept. 11.

Soldiers and civilians from across Garrison Command and Team Bliss attended, along with partners from El Paso and Borderland.

USAG Fort Bliss is comprised of 15 directorates that support the installation’s strategic deployment platform mission, enabling rapid and efficient deployment and redeployment of U.S. forces. Additionally, as the headquarters of the 1st Armored Division and several other large-scale and highly specialized units, the garrison is responsible for services and facilities for the approximately 30,000 troops stationed here and their families.

In his remarks, a glowing Holschbach said he appreciated his many “fight buddies” at the ceremony for their teamwork since assuming the responsibility in 2017.

“It was great to work with you and to build a good relationship,” he said during his remarks. “You’ve been a great group of people to work with and with each new group it just gets better, so thank you.”

Col. Stu James, the garrison commander, said being the senior noncommissioned officer in a multi-faceted organization like USAG Fort Bliss requires a multi-hatted CSM.

“Sergeant Major Holschbach stayed ‘on task’ managing a myriad of issues, giving me the leeway to focus on my ‘blind spots,'” said James, who has been garrison commander since July. , “As the new commander, I couldn’t ask for more. He has had a significant impact on the entire installation.

James said that because of the experience needed to become a command sergeant major, changes in responsibility, while vital, usually happen in a predictable way, but that was not the case at USAG Fort Bliss. .

“This position is unique because you don’t have any soldiers from your former MOS in training unless you come from the powerful Chaplain Corps or JAG Corps,” James said. “In a typical army command, the sergeant major is the most capable soldier in the formation…a lot of the unit usually holds the same MOS that the sergeant major once held. I would say this change in responsibility is a bit different from mostly because the garrison sergeant major is stepping into a new and somewhat foreign operating environment.”

Holschbach said he didn’t know how to prepare to become the CSM of a complex group of people and missions like USAG Fort Bliss, but he was able to figure it out along the way.

“In all previous jobs, soldiers did what you told them because the position and rank demanded it — this job is quite different,” Holschbach said. “I really had to leverage the softer skills of communication and create a ‘coalition of the willing’ to be effective.

“Our job is to support our teams who support our soldiers and their families, as well as the members of the military community who structure us,” he said. “Our goal is to maintain a stable state that creates as many efficiencies as possible in the services we support.”

So whether he’s a heavy equipment operator or now an infantry soldier, James said dedicated leadership is the MOS for the Garrison Sergeant Major and James said that he looked forward to serving alongside his unit’s new Senior Enlisted Advisor.

“This assignment will test the Sergeant Major’s flexibility and ability to adapt to a new operating environment, where the need to influence and build teams ‘is’ the essential skill set. Sergeant -Major Holschbach has done an outstanding job meeting this challenge and I know Sergeant Major Brasher will adapt quickly to meet this challenge as well.”

Date taken: 09.11.2019
Date posted: 16.09.2019 13:53
Story ID: 341118
Site: FORT BLISS, Texas, USA

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