Major General Michael Terry '79, current commanding general of the U.S. Army Tank Automotive and Armaments Command (TACOM) Life Cycle Management Command, returned home to speak with the cadets and cadre of the Royal Warrior Battalion. More than 60 cadets and cadre from the Army ROTC program recently gathered at the Armed Forces Reserve Center in Throop, just outside Major General Terry’s hometown of Dickson City, for a two-hour leader professional development forum.
Major General Terry, who has 33-plus years of service to the Army and nation, shared with cadets his thoughts on leadership and the challenges leaders in today’s Army face. He challenged cadets to be lifelong learners, be fair and impartial leaders, learn to be flexible and adaptable, as well as be on guard against toxic leadership. He also shared with cadets the importance of being honest and building trust within the team they lead, reminding those in attendance that, “Diversity is the strength of our Army.”
Finally, he talked about where the Army is headed in the coming years and the emphasis on returning to our basic principles such as counseling, mentoring and coaching both leaders and soldiers. A focus on education across the force and a return to fieldcraft.
"Major General Terry gave our battalion one of the most important briefs we could have received," said Military Science Level IV Cadet Carina Hanks, who will commission in May and serve in the Pennsylvania Army National Guard. "He talked about leadership philosophy, highlighting how we as officers can best take care of our soldiers physically and mentally, as well as what we can expect when we get to our first units. One of his most important lessons was to not be afraid to make mistakes and ask questions. That's how we learn, no one is perfect. We must be humble in the things we do, that is when we will truly succeed because we are there to "serve our soldiers, our soldiers do not serve us."
Major General Terry’s extensive leadership experience includes: Company Command in the 3rd Infantry Division (Mechanized) in Germany; commander of the Support Squadron, 3rd Armored Cavalry Regiment at Fort Carson, Colorado, and the 64th Corps Support Group based out of Fort Hood, Texas. While commanding the 64th, he deployed his brigade to Iraq during the opening phase of that conflict during Operation Iraqi Freedom One. As a general officer, Major General Terry commanded the 13th Corps Support Command at Fort Hood, Texas, later redesignated as the 13th Sustainment Command Expeditionary, where he deployed, first to Louisiana in support of operations following hurricanes Katrina and Rita, and then to Iraqi during Operation Iraqi Freedom Rotation 06-08 during the Surge operation. He then commanded the U.S. Army Security Assistance Command, Fort Belvoir, Virginia, which is responsible for the Army’s Foreign Military Sales program. Prior to assuming his current position, Major General Terry was the commanding general of the 8th Theater Sustainment Command, Fort Shafter, Hawaii, responsible for providing theater sustainment support to the U.S. Army throughout the Pacific.
This marks the second time this academic year that Major General Terry has taken time out to visit the Royal Warrior Battalion and share his ideas on leadership.