2-77 The FA’s top leaders earn badges – Fort Carson Mountaineer
By Sergeant. Gabrielle Pena
2nd Stryker Brigade Combat Team 4th Infantry Division Public Affairs
FORT CARSON, Colo. — The United States Army has created several special skill badges for soldiers serving in specific branches over the years. Infantrymen have the Expert Infantryman badge. Soldiers serving in the medical branch can test and earn their expert medical badge in the field.
However, a badge to identify all other soldiers as experts did not exist.
The U.S. Army announced on June 14, 2019 the Expert Soldier Badge, a proficiency badge designed to recognize soldier lethality and expertise outside of the infantry and medical fields.
On May 20, 2022, Lt. Col. Adam Ropelewski and Command Sgt. Maj. Jesus Robles, commanding officer and senior enlisted adviser of the 2nd Battalion, 77th Field Artillery Regiment, 2nd Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, stood with soldiers in their formation to receive their ESB at Fort Carson.
The “Mountain Warrior” Brigade Field Artillery Battalion Command Team underwent the same two weeks of one-week training and trials with all other EIB and ESB candidates .
They were intended to demonstrate that earning this badge was as crucial as an infantryman or medic earning their respective badges.
“We are setting a good example, setting a precedent for the rest of the non-EIB eligible population,” Robles said. “It’s an important thing for our army.”
Both Ropelewski and Robles found that the turnout of BSE earning senior leaders in their battalion was much higher than in previous training and testing iterations when they expressed their desire to go out and earn the badge. themselves.
“We had a battery commander and a few platoon sergeants (being tested),” Robles said.
About 18 other members of the battalion, including themselves, participated in the training and testing.
“We have set the conditions for the future,” Ropelewski said. “That should be the expectation for the future: create expert soldiers and take the time to dedicate the opportunity to execution.”