Yesterday I had the honor of co-hosting our 3rd annual Sexual Assault Awareness & Prevention Month(SAAPM) 5k Color Run/Walk Event at Rickenbacker (Columbus), Ohio. This was a joint operation that involved four branches of services.
Reference my post: SAAPM 2018 for additional information about Sexual Assault Awareness & Prevention Month.
This event was designed to bring awareness to sexual assault survivors, sexual harassment, and prevention/bystander intervention. I want to personally thank the victim advocates, chain of command, volunteers, the participants (100+), and most importantly, my friend and mentor, Captain J. Green (121 ARW SARC).
I can honestly say, the entire month was a huge success. The In Their Honor event on the 20th was truly unique, we had tons of participation for National Denim Day on the 25th. The culminating event was the 5k Color Run/Walk Event on the 27th of April.
Again, I want to thank everyone for this amazing journey and I am positive the 2019 events will be even better.
“We are the force behind the fight to achieve culture change.”
Note: The photo used for the cover is from the 2017 5k Color/Walk Run Event. The official photos have not been published, yet.
In May of 2019, I will retire from the military. This will be the conclusion to a very important chapter of my life that started on 30 July, 1997.
This journey has been an amazing experience, specifically due to the people I’ve had the honor of serving with. Without these people, my experiences would not be the same and more than likely, I would forget about them.
I joined the U.S. Army at the age of 18 and if I’m being honest, I was very naive about the real world. I grew up in a very small community so my perception of the world was very limited. I always remind myself: where you came from is extremely important but it doesn’t have anything to do with where you’re going.
I would love to list all the courses I attended during my 20+ years but I don’t want to bore people with the names of 50-60 courses. Instead, I will focus on the 2 courses that had a major impact in my life:
SHARP Foundation Course
Master Resilience Trainer (MRT)
Sexual Assault Response Coordinator (SARC): Due to completing the SHARP Foundation Course, I eventually became the SARC for my Brigade, along with my role as a Victim Advocate (VA). I also perform advocacy for my Contingent SARN Advocate position (non-military). I’ve been working in this field for approximately 8 years. Equality is incredibly important to me and I hope to pass on this passion to my children.
Master Resilience Trainer (MRT): Without question, this is the best course I’ve ever completed. Because of this course (certification) I’ve had the pleasure of certifying over 150 Resilience Trainer Assistants (RTA).
This training is a huge contributing factor to how I managed to turn my life around. I can’t wait to share some new processes that I created for my upcoming book: The Best Version of You. It will be finished in 2018 and will be my 3rd book. This will be my first Self Help book.
In conclusion: I want to thank everyone that has helped me along this journey. I never deployed to support Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) or Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) so to some people, my 20+ years might not mean very much. I believed that for almost 10 years.
But that’s not true. As a leader, my job was to take care of people regardless of the location. Therefore, I still contributed to the Army’s mission. I do not regret anything about my career because everything contributed to the person I am today. For that, I love the military and I will truly miss it and the amazing people.