State of the SFMC - May 2014
April was a pleasant end to the nastiness of winter weather here in the Midwest. Like all of you, I have been greatly concerned for our fellow members through the killer storms that have swept through the Midwest and South. I am really hoping that May shapes up into a warm, and reasonably dry, month for us all.
Let's get down to business...
The following awards were approved in the month of April and were presented prior to this report:
SFMC Achievement Award
I also have the privilege of presenting an SFMC Service Commendation to Julie Rickard.
Finally, I'd like to offer my congratulations to COFORCECOM Jari “Gato”
James on her recently announced promotion to Brigadier General.
It has also come to my attention that BGN James has also been recognized for her efforts in saving the life of an elderly lady in her community.
She recognized that this lady was suffering the very earliest onset stages of a stroke and took charge of the situation. She managed to get the lady and her sister situated in the beauty shop and calmed down. She also called 911 and summoned medical help, waiting with the two ladies and keeping them both calm and under control until that medical help had arrived on scene. At this past weekend's 5^th Brigade Muster, for her efforts in this incident, BGN James was also awarded the Comet Award by 5^th Brigade OIC Bobbie Baxter.
Congratulations one and all! Well done and well deserved!!
Well, I can finally announce that we have a new motto. The new motto is three words, “Virtus, Vis, Decretum” (VIR-toose, VEESE, Day-CRAY-tum).
In its basic form it means “Strength of Mind, Strength of Body, Strength of Purpose” in Latin. It has been brought to my attention, however, that these three words also have some nuanced meanings that are also appropriate. I will quote Jerry Stoddard, who knows much more about Latin than I, in explaining some of these more subtle meanings:
“...I realized with a grin that sometimes having Latin words that
carried specific shades of meaning that didn't easily cross to
English could HELP.
Virtus implies a strength of will or character - in other words
moral and mental strength
Vis is more about physical strength, might, power...
...Decretum is a strong conviction to an ideal, resolve, a code to
live by - I rather like all these meanings and more to stand for
Strength of Purpose."
Now that we have a motto, we'll start swapping it in on all of our sites and publications. I want to thank everyone who sent in their motto ideas and everyone who offered help, support, and suggestions.
This past month I spoke to the marines of the Twelfth Brigade at their Muster in Tulsa, OK. We had a great time even though tech limitations kept us on speaker phone, for the discussion. We did have an engaging conversation and I thoroughly enjoyed it.
If any other Brigade would like to arrange a via Skype visit with me, or other members of the General Staff, please feel free to contact us the addresses listed below. Speaking for myself, I enjoyed it and am willing to do so again any time.
A couple of items from last time that bear repeating:
It is important to remember that Email Addresses no longer appear on the STARFLEET Database. This being the case, it is of vital importance that marines check and double check the email address entered on any form being sent to the SFMC for any reason. If your email address is entered incorrectly, servicing whatever request you are making, SFMCA Course, Award Certificate request, etc., will be *significantly* delayed.
Suggestions and Ideas
People, the General Staff exists to make the SFMC a better place to be.
That being said, we never claim to have all the answers. If you have an idea or suggestion of benefit to the SFMC please, by all means, send it to one of us. I'll give the addresses below:
Mike McGowan, Commandant: firstname.lastname@example.org Jim Monroe, Deputy Commandant: email@example.com Jerry Stoddard, Sergeant Major, SFMC: firstname.lastname@example.org Barry Jackson, COFINCOM: email@example.com Jari James, COFORCECOM: firstname.lastname@example.org Mark Anderson, COINFOCOM: email@example.com Travis Littou, COTRACOM: firstname.lastname@example.org
The SFMC continues to grow and its the marines of the SFMC that make the Corps an attractive option to more and more STARFLEET members each month. We're getting to the time of year, at least here in North America, where the temperatures are more and more welcoming to the kinds of activities we enjoy doing, both for fun and to help our communities.
I look forward to reading about the things you do.
Finally, there is a little saying that I'd like you all to remember from here on out. It goes like this: “If you don't report it, we can't reward it.” It really is just that simple. And this isn't a concept just for OICs or even just for officers. If you do something that merits recognition of some type, you MUST take some responsibility and let your OIC and DOIC know about it. Unit officers, you must take that information and pass it up the chain. If you know that your marines are doing something of note but don't have all the information, call them up or email them! Get the information and put it in your report.
Remember that we need who, what, where, when, and why. If you've tried something new and different, 'how' is a great thing to pass up the chain as well. The details you include can help another unit do better for their communities as well.
When I get complaints, the one I hear most often from marines is that they don't feel they have been recognized for their work. During the conversation, however, it normally comes out that they simply didn't tell anyone what they had done. There just isn't any way that the officers of the Corps, at any level, can report and arrange recognition for actions about which they know nothing.
We, as an organization, can get better about recognizing the efforts of our members, but its going to take a concerted effort by all levels of the Chain of Command from the General Staff all the way to the individual marine.
Have a great month! Enjoy yourselves and stay safe!
OIC, 225th MSG