As in the case of many of us, whose enlisted beginnings took us to a point where we had a career decision to make about our future, After nearly 17 years, I had to decide whether to pursue a SGM/CSM pathway, or apply to the Warrant Officer program, or consider retirement at 20 years. As a senior Counterintelligence Agent (E8), the SGM/CSM path would have required me to leave the “field work” I enjoyed, and I wasn’t ready for that, but I also couldn’t see myself as a retiree. And although I have and will always be, very proud of my NCO years, I knew that I still had something to give to the Army; as a Leader, a Trainer, a Mentor and a Technically qualified CI Agent. So I opted for the WO Program. Clearly, in my mind and in my heart, I had always known that I wanted to be one of those “Quiet Professionals”. And so of course, I joined the USAWOA upon graduation from WOCS.
In fact, even after six years of retirement, I still feel the same way. And so I still “proudly” consider myself and loudly proclaim to others, that I am and will always be a US Army Warrant Officer, albeit retired,… with a duty to represent, assist and support those WOs who have filled my shoes and the shoes of countless others before and after me. Moreover, I humbly submit that we all owe such a duty to those WOs currently carrying on the fight, those WOCs who are being trained to assume the mantle, and to the widows, orphans and other dependents of those WOs who have fallen in service to our country.
To that end, I suggest that there is no better vehicle for “professional Warrant Officers”, through which we can jointly fulfill our duty to them – and to ourselves, than through our membership in the US Army Warrant Officers Association.
FOR THE CORPS
CW4(R) Cesar A. Blanco