KILLEEN — Hundreds of representatives of the Central Texas Fort Hood Chapter of the Association of the U.S. Army are in Washington, D.C., for the annual AUSA conference.
The three-day conference, which allows AUSA chapters from around the world to meet with Army leadership and learn what’s new and upcoming in the Army, began Monday morning.
The mayors of Killeen, Belton and Temple, along with members of the city councils, are also in attendance to show their support for Fort Hood and to speak with members of Congress about what is most needed to care for the soldiers and their families in the Central Texas region, said Killeen Mayor Jose Segarra.
“It’s doing great, and I always enjoy it out here at AUSA,” Segarra said. “I’m really looking forward to the Hall visits.”
Segarra said the representatives of Killeen in attendance would be visiting with Senators John Cornyn and Ted Cruz, along with U.S. Reps John Carter, R-Round Rock, and Roger Williams, R-Austin, to speak about the importance of Fort Hood to the surrounding communities and for the nation’s military capabilities.
“They know that already, but it’s good that they see us here advocating on behalf of Fort Hood,” the mayor said.
Early Monday morning, the Central Texas Fort Hood Chapter was recognized as AUSA’s largest chapter, and the 1st Cavalry Division from Fort Hood was recognized for having the largest active-duty membership with AUSA, Segarra said. Also, Belton resident retired Command Sgt. Maj. Frank Minosky was awarded the Sergeant Major of the Army William G. Bainbridge Medal for his contributions to the Army noncommissioned officer corps.
AUSA is a nonprofit educational and professional development association serving America’s Army and supporters of a strong national defense, according to ausa.org. AUSA provides a voice for the Army, supports the soldier and honors those who have served in order to advance the security of the nation.
The conference continues today with seminars involving the Sergeant Major of the Army Michael A. Grinston’s Professional Development forum; a military family forum on military housing and permanent change of station moves with speaker retired Lt. Gen. Karen E. Dyson, the first female finance officer to achieve the three-star rank; and a homeland security forum with keynote speaker David P. Pekoske, who is currently performing the duties of the deputy secretary of Department of Homeland Security.
The annual conference concludes Wednesday.