U.S. Army Europe Commander Lt. Gen. Donald Campbell made his first visit to Stuttgart April 4 since his arrival to Germany last December.
The purpose of the visit was initially to attend the U.S. Africa Command change of command, but Campbell decided to arrive early to spend time with the U.S. Army Garrison Stuttgart personnel to learn about local programs and best practices.
“I wanted to meet the team and dialogue with them about the great services they provide here,” Campbell said.
During the visit, Campbell visited Panzer Kaserne, and Patch and Kelley Barracks to meet with garrison personnel on a variety of topics such as sponsorship, physical fitness and Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation programs.
The visit focused on programs that support themes associated with the Department of the Army’s new “Ready and Resilient” campaign, which rolled out in March. The intent of the new program is in its name, ensuring readiness by strengthening resiliency, according to Campbell.
“The more we can do to promote resiliency, the better,” said Campbell. “Stuttgart has a number of programs available to service members and their families that highlight this.”
One program that Campbell was particularly interested in was the Stuttgart Warrior Pride Challenge, which he said he believed would be a fit for other garrisons in Europe. The program, a USAG Stuttgart Army Substance Abuse Program initiative, promotes resiliency and wellness through alcohol-free events that build social connections.
“I got a briefing on the program when I first arrived in Europe, but to talk to the people behind it and see the impact it’s had on the community was very powerful,” Campbell said.
Programs that emphasize resiliency are critical, as they support service members who have served in a period of prolonged combat operations in Iraq and Afghanistan for more than 12 years, added Campbell.
“As things are beginning to wind down, it gives us an opportunity to take a step back and look at what we can continue to do to support the great men and women who serve this country along with the families that support them,” Campbell said.
Col. John P. Stack, the USAG Stuttgart commander, welcomed the opportunity to introduce Campbell to the garrison and its programs, and get a fresh perspective from senior leadership.
“He understands the mission of the garrison is challenging and requires teamwork to be successful,” Stack said. “His guidance was to continue to work together and communicate with our installation partners to solve issues that arise.”