"Thoughts from the Running Trail" – Thanksgiving

We are coming into that time of the year of good tidings and festivities across the world and we have a lot to be thankful for in CJTF-HOA. The SgtMaj and I could not be more proud and thankful for the hard work and dedication to our mission and for serving our great nation, without question and without failure. We are thankful for your families and loved ones back home and all the sacrifices they make everyday also so that we can focus on our mission and its success. Most of all, we are thankful for YOU! Without you and this strong and awesome team, our continued accomplishments to help enable our partners and build stronger relationships would not be possible.

Your commitment to service and country allows our Nation to enjoy the blessings of Thanksgiving and all the freedoms that come with in which we continue to cherish so much.   It can be difficult being away from our loved ones but the SgtMaj and I are humbled to be able to serve with such an incredible team of professional service members, partners and civilian teammates like we have here at CJTF-HOA.

You hear the SgtMaj and I, discuss being perfect, with each and every one of you on a daily basis and this is the time of year that every Soldier, Airman, Marine, Sailor, Coastguardsman should strive that extra mile to meet our core values. You are our blood and treasure, you are the life blood of CJTF-HOA and just like with our gear, we need to do preventive maintenance to ensure we are always at our best.

Remember, you are your brother and sisters' keeper. We can all be excellent battle buddies, wingmen, and shipmates by looking out for each other in uniform or out of uniform if we strive to follow three main things.

Be a leader:

We're a family here at CJTF-HOA, and we are the epitome of the profession of arms, we engage leaders at all levels and look them straight in the eyes. We represent the best of our country. It's important we treat one another with dignity and respect always... You must lead your subordinates and your peers, to accomplish the mission, but also checking on their welfare as we know it can be difficult being away from loved ones.  Being engaged is our duty and knowing each of your people is our responsibility.  With small unit leadership, we can ensure our members are getting the support they need to accomplish the mission effectively.

Be competent in your craft:

Being competent in our craft and seeking self improvement is something we should all strive for.  Continue to build upon your knowledge of your duties as a representative to our services, to this country and our great organization. This is also continuing to develop us as better leaders.  You can never stop educating yourself and others on what you do here at CJTF-HOA and the difference this organization is making regionally.

Be a good teammate:

Our service members are our most precious asset.   One of the greatest things we can give to someone is our time.  Taking time to talk to someone and letting them know they are not alone is priceless.   Every single one of us has that obligation.  That is why we are such a great organization who based on character, shared understanding and trust.  If one of our teammates isn’t 100% in the game, then it will affect our entire organization. Remember “Ubuntu” which we know to mean “I am because we are”   Just like sticks in a bundle, they are stronger when in a bundle and weaker when alone.  We all have our days, and even I look to my battle buddy SgtMaj who helps mentally steer me in the right direction to ensure the mission gets accomplished.   I try to stay balanced by visiting my CARE team members and all that they have to offer.  We have many services to provide our members here on Camp. Please make sure that we are giving our time to one another you are looking out for each other.

SgtMaj and I convey our admiration and gratitude for all you do.  We wish you, your families and loved ones a happy Thanksgiving.

Ubuntu… See you on the running trail.


Commander Senior Enlisted Leader

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CJTF-HOA welcomes new commander, senior enlisted leader

Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa welcomed U.S. Army Brig. Gen Kurt L. Sonntag and said farewell to U.S. Army Maj. Gen. Mark Stammer during a change of command ceremony April 13, 2016, at Camp Lemonnier, Djibouti. U.S. Army Gen. David M. Rodriguez, commanding general for U.S. Africa Command, presided over the ceremony.

CJTF-HOA welcomes new CSEL

U.S. Army Command Sgt. Maj. Butler Kendrick Jr. assumed responsibility as the Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa command senior enlisted leader, succeeding U.S. Army Sgt. Maj. Claudell Taylor, during a Relinquishment of Authority ceremony at Camp Lemonnier, Djibouti, June 19, 2015.

Secretary Kerry visits CJTF-HOA service members

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry recently visited Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa headquarters at Camp Lemonnier, Djibouti, during a series of stops with several partner nations throughout Africa.

Grigsby leaves Legacy at CJTF-HOA

Former U.S. Army General Douglas McArthur once said, “A true leader has the confidence to stand alone, the courage to make tough decisions and the compassion to listen to the needs of others.” For more than a year, Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa has been privileged to be guided by such a true leader.

Thoughts from the Running Trail - "In Honor of Martin Luther King"

SgtMaj and I always say it is a Leadership factory at CJTF-HOA and we build Leaders first. We do so and we are so successful because this command is the most diverse we have seen. It is a melting pot of each of our services; active duty, reserves, and our coalition and civilian partners. We embrace each other’s culture, and, SgtMaj and I challenge each of you to learn from one another’s service culture and service traditions. While being in the countries of our East Africa Partners, share a little of your culture and learn about the culture of the country you are in. In turn, this will make our organization and our mission stronger and more successful.