State of INFOCOM December 2012

State of INFOCOM December 2012

Seasons Greetings from INFOCOM!

This has been a very long year for INFOCOM.. we’ve had several staff
changes, two major website revisions, several publication updates, and a
whole lot more.All these changes have, for the most part, been for the
best and we’ve had very little problems with the changes.That has made
the jobs of all those involved much easier and we are all thankful for that.

With the holiday season coming up, INFOCOM is closing our doors starting
this Saturday December 22nd.We will not be re-opening our doors till Jan
10th 2013.This is to give everyone a chance to decompress, enjoy time
with family and most importantly enjoy the holiday season with their
loved ones.

2013 is shaping up to be a very busy year for INFOCOM.We have several
more publication updates to work on, and our G3 staff will be gearing up
for some big projects throughout the year.We’ll be continuously updating
our websites to provide the latest/greatest to the corps as a whole and
try our best to meet the needs of the corps.We can’t do it without you,
the members of the SFMC, supporting us.Starting next year, we will be
publishing a brand-new version of the ATTENTION ON DECK publication,
once every quarter.To make the AOD a great thing again, we need your
help, marines.The only way to do this is to send us your
submissions.These can be anything from a after-action-report from a
convention, MSG event, Brigade Muster, or even the International
Conference.In fact, we’ll welcome all these submissions and much, much
more.The final issue has shaped up to be an AMAZING issue by the sheer
number of submissions we have received.I’m completely beside myself with
the number we’ve received, and I sincerely hope we continue to get more
for subsequent issues.

I’m not going to bore you with more details about INFOCOM’s plans for
2013, nor am I going to bore you with what we have accomplished.A lot of
the work that has been done was done behind the scenes, and we’ve all
worked very hard to accomplish what we have.2012 is winding down quickly
(And with a bang apparently.. I’m going through what looks to be the
biggest blizzard in the area for the year.. lol) and I’m finding myself
thankful for all the support I’ve had over the last year.I want to thank
the past COINFOCOM’s for their hard work, Wade Hoover, Sean Neimeyer,
and Mike Timko.All three of these gentlemen have served INFOCOM with
distinction and I thank them for their service.I especially want to
thank Wade and Mike for having me on board as their DCO’s.Thank you to
the General Staff for the vote of confidence when they installed me as
the latest COINFOCOM.I hope I can continue to accomplish the goals we
set out to do in the same fashion that I have in the past year.

Finally, to all you marines out there.Please remember during this
holiday season that we still have members of the military serving
overseas.Please keep them in your prayers and your thoughts, and wish
them a very Merry Christmas when you get a chance.Most importantly,
THANK THEM for their service to their country, regardless of which
country they served.Their sacrifice to their country is what keeps our
countries safe.Never forget them.

Happy Holidays, STARFLEET!!!See you in 2013!

BGEN Joe “Wolfpack” Brouhard
Commanding Officer, Information Command (COINFOCOM)
STARFLEET Marine Corps


infocom at

State of the NCO Corps December 2012

State of the NCO Corps December 2012

Greetings Marines!

Please join me in the booth in the back in the corner in the dark of my local NCO club, where the latest sign over the bar reads “Land of Cotton” (because old times here are not only not forgotten, they are generally discussed at great length) and the bartender occasionally has to remind someone that it’s “Service before Self” and NOT “Serve Yourself” .

Since this is the “State of the NCO Corps”, let’s take a moment to discuss that as 2012 winds down. I have been continuing to track a sample representing approximately 40 percent of the SFMC, and that sample still supports an estimate of about one Marine in four holding an enlisted rank. These Marines serve in billets at all levels of the Corps, from their local units to their BN or BDE all the way up to the General Staff, and not always in exclusively enlisted positions like NCOIC. They range in age from elementary school aged cadets to septuagenarians, and include those who have served as NCOs in their real world armed forces, and those who have simply and whole heartedly embraced the traditions of NCOs stretching back to the centurions of Rome. But, across the board they tend to exhibit the enthusiasm, pride, and professionalism expected of an SFMC NCO. For the most part, they have chosen to remain in the enlisted ranks in an organization where being an officer is the more common path, sometimes politely but firmly refusing promotion out of the ranks because that choice is important to them on a personal level.

Their motto is “Service before Self”, and many take that to mean that getting the job before them done is more important than whatever personal recognition they may receive. But, thanks to the efforts of many fine officers in the Corps, that recognition comes whether they were looking for it or not. This past year has seen enlisted Marines receive awards for service ranging from the Leaders Commendation all the way up to the SFMC Distinguished Service Cross.

Get the picture? Enlisted Marines are still, and most probably always be a minority in the SFMC, but they are active and thriving, and I take great pride in representing them at the GS level.

Another duty assigned me is promoting community service activities throughout the Corps. But, since the SFMC is a part of STARFLEET, let me direct your attention to the Fleet Admiral’s Challenge. You can read all about it at the CQ Online using the link below:

To sum up, Fleet Admiral Dave Blaser would like to ask that all chapters start a food drive collecting non-perishable food items for donation to your local food bank. Keep a tally of how much food you’ve collected in pounds and send that periodically to the Annual Campaign Director, Brian Schreur, at campaign at Brian will track the information, and the three chapters who donated the largest and send them an award certificate. The program will be accepting donation counts through to January 31, 2013.

As I’m fond of reminding you- no matter how small your local community is, if you look around you’ll probably find a way to put in a couple of hours or so every once in a while giving someone who needs it a hand, and from where I sit, that’s the essence of community service.

Speaking of recognition for community service, I would like to give a BIG tip of Top’s eight point to CDT SGT Benjamin Mabbit of the 380th MSG. On November 30, CDT SGT Mabbit participated with his martial arts school in a demonstration of karate forms that raised a combined total of over £1200 (over 1900 US dollars) for the “Big C” cancer charity. I am pleased to note that CDT SGT Mabbit took something he did for fun, and used it to benefit a good cause, and that my official response when I learned of this was “ OUT-Freaking-STANDING!”

Please remember that the SFMC General Staff needs your input and ideas in order to properly do our jobs. Don’t hesitate to contact the appropriate GS member with your questions, comments and ideas. You can find all the email addresses at the SFMC website, and, of course, we monitor the Corps-l list, and the SFMC Facebook group.

Now it’s time for Top’s History Lesson. In 1919, a unit of the Gendarmerie d’Haiti (the government forces fighting against the Caco rebellion) welcomed their new commander – a USMC corporal brevetted to Lieutenant in their forces. Unlike the earlier USMC campaign in Haiti, where Marines fought in their own units, during what has become known as the Second Haiti Campaign, they were posted in command positions over the Gendarmerie, and this wasn’t the only enlisted Marine serving in an officer’s role. But, this particular Marine was a pretty good fit for his billet.

Born in Virginia in 1898, he grew up listening to stories from Civil War veterans, and, since he idolized “Stonewall” Jackson, he was probably very pleased when he was accepted to Jackson’s old school, the Virginia Military Institute. A voracious reader and student of history, he would have likely done very well at VMI, but, we’ll never know. Declaring that he wanted to “go where the guns are”, and inspired by the actions of the Marines at Belleau Wood, he dropped out of school after his first year, and joined the USMC as a private. He didn’t get to see any action in World War I, but he did rapidly make it through NCO school, and then OCS, and was commissioned a 2LT in June of 1919, He had been an officer all of ten days when a reduction in forces forced a decision. He could be an inactive reserve officer, or he could stay on active duty as an enlisted Marine. For him, the choice was obvious, and it was as a corporal that he was soon shipped to Haiti.

He served there for nearly five years, seeing a fair amount of fighting (over 40 engagements against Caco forces) as he rose through the ranks and gained the experience in jungle fighting and small unit tactics that would serve him and the USMC so very well in the future. Although a fine NCO, shortly after his return to the States in 1924, he finally rejoined the officers’ ranks, but his time as an enlisted Marine would always be with him, and in later years, he would be known for his understanding and concern for the enlisted ranks. In fact, there probably isn’t a member of the USMC that hasn’t mentioned him a time or two even today.

So who was this “reverse mustang” who wanted to be an active Marine so badly he became an NCO and worked his way back up? Well, would it help if I told you that one person who met him described him as having “a back straight as a board and a torso built like a barrel“, and that physique led to a nickname that stayed with him all his life?

To the USMC in 1924 he was officially Service Number 03158, but he will be forever be known with respect and even affection by Marines by that nickname: “Chesty”.

Lewis Burwell Puller became one of the most famous US Marines in history, rising to the rank of LT General. His personal courage earned him a staggering FIVE Navy Crosses, an Army Distinguished Service Cross, and a Silver Star, and his tough, aggressive leadership served the Marines well during both World War Two and the Korean War. It’s hard to find a collection of Marine anecdotes or quotes that doesn’t include a few “Chesty” stories,

He is deservedly a legend and an icon to Marines, but remember- at one time – he was just a Marine NCO doing a thankless, dirty job that had to be done because that was where the guns were and that’s where he wanted to be.

Semper Fi!

MGSGT Jerome A. “ Gunny Hawk” Stoddard
Sergeant Major of the Starfleet Marines

State of the SFMC December 2012

State of the SFMC December 2012

Greetings to all Marines

Very shortly we herald the end of another year for the SFMC and hopefully, bring with it the promise of an improved 2013.

Thus it is once again timely to continue to remind all those involved in the Commandant’s Campaign, that this year’s campaign will
come to close at the end of the month, and you will need to ensure you have your activities reported through the Chain of Command (CoC).
You have the February reporting cycle to ensure this is done

The 2013 Commandant’s campaign will commence as of 1 January and will this year include the following:

* United States Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots program (or its equivalent elsewhere in the World)

* Special Olympics

* March for the Disabled

If there are other worthwhile activities that you feel should be reviewed for inclusion, please get in contact with me – quickly

In review, 2012 has been a disruptive year for this General Staff (GS). The impacts of having to deal with the our real lives had seen
the resignation of the Deputy Commandant and the CO InfoCom, as well as the shuffling of other GS staffs bought about as a consequence
to the movement of these senior people.

All of this has created small waves of interference to plans and objectives as we have had to establish new personnel with new ideas
and new goals and objectives, making it a little difficult to maintain solidified consistency of outcome.

But despite these interruptions we have also managed to put together several excellent incentives that have proven worthwhile and of value
to Marines, including a range of uniform accoutrements and a reincarnation of the Recruiting Award. We have also recently seen the release
of a new website and the continued focus of attention to our many, most important NCO’s, by the SFMC SGM.

We have seen the celebration of the commencement of our 30th Anniversary year an achievement that not many other international fan
groups can lay claim to, especially any group similar to ours

And we look to forward to the expectation that in 2013, this GS will certainly take some value from the two previous year’s experiences
gained and be able to throw out some fun and motivationally-valued ideas to lead us through the next year

We started this year with a membership base of around 1,103 Marines , spread over 147 Units and, at time of writing, look to end this year
with a net membership gain of an additional 50/60 Marines and 15 new activated Units. In terms of continued growth a 5% increase must
be considered not too shabby at all!

We will obviously need to continue to keep growing and expanding and every effort that can be made to add just that “extra Marine” to any
roster will certainly help to ensure the SFMC continues to move forward.

But the age-old issues that have always flowed about the SFMC still continue to haunt us and like any fan organization, the means to motivation
and improve inter-action with members is always difficult. Apathy can most definitely kill and we must all take every possible measure we can
to keep interest; value; services; fun elements and rewards for effort, as high as we possibly can.

We might be reflecting continued growth but we must make sure that the shadows of apathy are keep at bay. The GS needs your help to identify
areas of interest that can be expanded and built upon so that we can all work together to keep the Corps right at the top, exactly where it should be.
We will always value your input and ideas that may help the Corps to continue to grow

No doubt there will be many messages of Seasonal goodwill that will soon swirl amongst us all, but such greetings can never be said too often and with that,
all of us within the SFMC General Staff and our own staffs, wish that every ounce of happiness and pleasure that can be derived from the Christmas Holiday Season is passed amongst you all,
and that we look forward to a happy, healthy, safe and most prosperous 2013.

Bruce O’Brien
Brigadier General, SFMC
Commandant, STARFLEET Marine Corps