A new Association of the U.S. Army event is coming to the Crown Complex this month. The AUSA Warfighter Summit and Exposition is a two-day, in-person summit to teach leadership and professional development.
The theme this year is “America’s Response Force: Ready Today, Ready Tomorrow.”
Retired Brig. Gen. Jack Haley is the Vice President, Membership and Meetings for the AUSA. He says they have wanted to host a big event at Fort Bragg for a while and is excited to kick this event off as it’s aimed at the everyday soldier.
“We wanted to do an event that was focused purely on the soldier, the warfighter,” Haley said. “We have been wanting to do this for a long time, and it’s finally coming together.”
The summit will feature presentations by Army senior leaders and commands based at Fort Bragg, as well as experts from industry and academia. Topics will span the seven warfighting functions and highlight the way Army operational forces can sharpen their capabilities to win on the future battlefield.
There also will be discussions on best practices to sustain foundational readiness and modernization and promote installation resilience.
But it won’t be all lectures and panels. On the other side of the Crown Complex will be an obstacle course called the Battle Challenge Area.
“We will run soldiers through the obstacle course and reward top male and top female over the two days,” Haley said.
The keynote speaker on the first day of the summit will be Gen. James C. McConville, the Chief of Staff of the Army. The keynote speaker on the second day of the summit will be Sgt. Maj. of the Army, Michael A. Grinston.
One speaker Haley thinks will excite people will be former NFL Player and Army Captain Alejandro Villanueva. Villanueva will deliver a PRIME Talk on People, Readiness, Innovation, Modernization and Education.
“He’s going to talk to soldiers about leadership, morals and ethics that he learned when he was deployed in Afghanistan,” Haley said. “I also think he will run the battle course with a couple of troops and do a physical training session with some of the soldiers at Fort Bragg.”
Gen. Andrew Poppas, the new commander of United States Army Forces Command, will also have a chance to talk to Fort Bragg soldiers during a town hall on the second day of the summit. Poppas and Grinston will hold a discussion on building readiness through cohesive teams that are highly trained, disciplined and fit.
In addition, a session dedicated to the spouses and families of servicemembers will be held. That panel called Community Grit: Building Family Support Readiness will take place on the first day of the expo.
For those who can’t make it to all of the panels, many of them will be live-streamed on AUSA’s website and social media.
Online registration is open until July 20. The event itself will take place on July 27 and July 28. There is no cost for military and government civilian personnel.
All attendees, exhibitors and speakers are to be vaccinated against COVID-19. Masks are optional. To register, go to https://meetings.ausa.org/warfighter/index.cfm.