MADISON, Wis. — It’s been a year of firsts for Command Sgt. Maj. Georgett Hall. In January she was selected to be the first senior enlisted leader to the Wisconsin Army National Guard chief of staff. The following month, she was selected to be the first senior enlisted advisor for the Wisconsin adjutant general.
“When I started my career, I would have never imagined this is where I would be today,” Hall said.
Hall’s career began in 1993 as an intelligence analyst in the U.S. Army Reserve. She transferred to active duty, spending three years at Fort Hood, Texas. She joined the New York Army National Guard, where she applied her intelligence analyst skills to their drug interdiction operations on the U.S. northern border. She joined the Wisconsin Army National Guard in 2001, taking a full-time position in 2002. She deployed to Camp Arifjan, Kuwait with the 32nd Infantry Brigade Combat Team in 2005, and to Camp Basrah, Iraq with the Minnesota National Guard’s 34th Infantry Division in 2009.
Hall’s position as senior enlisted leader to the chief of staff is full-time, while her position as senior enlisted advisor to the adjutant general is a traditional drill weekend role. Because these are both new positions, Hall has had to figure out the parameters of her jobs as she goes. She said the knowledge and experience gained during her 28-year career helps her provide sound advice from the enlisted perspective to both the chief of staff and adjutant general.
“Both are advisor roles, so I have to maintain a level of situational awareness over a broad range of topics,” Hall said. “The biggest difference is that for the chief of staff, I’m still focused on the [Wisconsin Army National Guard]. For the adjutant general, I need to focus up the chain and out to our external partners. I’m still building that focus.”
The DeForest, Wisconsin resident also represents both Army and Air National Guard enlisted concerns to the adjutant general, which adds to the learning curve.
“I didn’t think the Air Force terminology would be that different,” she admitted. “It’s only been a few months, but I’ve really enjoyed it. I have the flexibility to talk to Soldiers and Airmen about issues and educate them on processes or upcoming challenges. I also have the opportunity to set the state up for future command senior enlisted leaders, both Army and Air, with our partner organizations and at the national level with other command senior enlisted leaders. It’s a lot of work, but extremely fulfilling.”
She also coordinates with state Command Sgt. Maj. Curtis Patrouille and state Chief Master Sgt. Meredith Conn, each the full-time senior enlisted advisors to the deputy adjutants general for Army and Air, respectively.
“We are working through the responsibilities and priorities for each of us,” Hall explained. “They cover down on quite a few responsibilities when the adjutant general is traveling. I hope to eventually find the balance so the next command senior enlisted leader can fall in on a normal battle rhythm.”
Her duties as senior enlisted advisor to the adjutant general — the commander of the Wisconsin National Guard — include recommending courses of action related to the organization, training and equipping of Wisconsin National Guard elements; support the adjutant general’s established objectives by providing joint command leadership with strategic planning and recommendations on effective use of programs and resources; actively support leaders’ efforts to improve enlisted readiness and training opportunities; challenge enlisted members and leverage their skillsets by integrating talent management concepts into Wisconsin National Guard programs, policies and initiatives; and support the development of the state partnership program.
Hall said it may sound cliché, but her career has prepared her for this new role.
“Helping Soldiers with issues since becoming a noncommissioned officer and learning how to advise my commanders, as opposed to just doing the work, as a first sergeant and command sergeant major taught me everything that I’m applying here,” she said. “It just comes with experience.”
Hall said it would be an understatement to say it is an honor to be chosen for this assignment.
“The adjutant general and the rest of the organization have placed a great deal of trust in me to figure out how a new duty position — and one of this caliber — fits into the existing structure,” Hall said. “As I get more involved and talk to more people, it is truly humbling to meet with the troops, hear their stories and frustrations, and know I’m in a position to help.”