CJTF-HOA Welcomes New Command Senior Enlisted Leader
U.S. Marine Corps Sgt. Maj. Bonnie Skinner took responsibility as the Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa command senior enlisted leader from U.S. Marines Corps Sgt. Maj. Gary Smith during a ceremony at Camp Lemonnier, Djibouti, July 1, 2013.
Skinner says she is honored to take the reins from such an "amazing leader as Sgt. Maj. Smith."
"His footprint is going to be in the sands of Djibouti and the HOA for years to come because of the impact he has made on Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa," she said.
As the CSEL, Skinner serves as the principal advisor to the CJTF-HOA commander on all issues affecting health, morale, welfare and professional development of more than 1,800 joint service personnel throughout several countries in Africa.
"It's truly humbling to assume the position as the senior enlisted leader for the combined joint task force and one I do not take lightly ," said Skinner. "The CJTF-HOA has been making a significant impact since it began in 2002 and the mindset has always been that of making a difference every day in every way."
U.S. Army Maj. Gen. Terry Ferrell, CJTF-HOA commander, personally selected Skinner to take over the position, pointing out that she is a superb example for others to follow.
"She is a fine role model for each and every service to emulate, want to be like and strive to achieve the same as she has," said Ferrell during the ceremony.
Skinner noted the diversity of services that make up CJTF-HOA. "We are all proud of the service we joined and we should be. But as we are here in a joint environment, working together as one team, we can benefit by learning and respecting one another's culture and service and by doing that, we will grow from each other's strengths and backgrounds. From this we will be an even more elite force," she said.
Prior to being selected for this assignment, Skinner was the Station Sergeant Major for Marine Corps Air Station Miramar, San Diego.