The New TRANSCOM Enlisted Chief Began Out As a Troubled Airman

On June 13, the Pentagon introduced Chief Grasp Sgt. Brian P. Kruzelnick, the highest enlisted member of Air Mobility Command, had been chosen as the following command senior enlisted chief for U.S. Transportation Command, which oversees the motion of troops and gear around the globe.

The celebrated task is the most recent in a collection of management roles stretching again over Kruzelnick’s 29-year Air Power profession. However the Airman didn’t all the time present such promise—Kruzelnick had a troublesome begin in life, which contributed to robust begin in service.

“I got here from the imply streets of New Jersey, struggling to outlive on this planet through which I lived,” Kruzelnick, a local of Passaic, wrote in a weblog submit about his early army profession on The Mobility Discussion board after taking up his present function at AMC in 2020. 

“I lacked primary bodily and psychological wants, from shelter to a sense of belonging,” he stated. 

On the advice of a buddy, Kruzelnick enlisted within the Air Power as an plane maintainer, however the early years have been a problem.

“It was arduous to appropriate my undisciplined and unstructured background to satisfy army expectations, which led me to be a less-than-desired Airman,” he wrote. “Residing in ‘survival mode’ for therefore lengthy made me combative and stopped me from creating wholesome relationships. Though I did have a powerful work ethic, my habits was not acceptable.”

Particularly, the chief advised Air & House Forces Journal that he would “discover myself in altercations with others and have my First Sergeant choose me up on the Safety Forces Squadron, and I had issues with authority as I felt every thing was a private assault or I needed to all the time present ‘energy.’”

As time went on, Kruzelnick finally discovered solace, delight, and acceptance within the teamwork and accomplishment wanted to generate plane on a flightline. He was additionally impressed by deployments in assist of Operations Deny Flight and Present Promise, each of which have been associated to ethnic conflicts in Bosnia and Herzegovina within the mid-Nineties. These deployments allowed Kruzelnick to “[witness] AMC flat out delivering hope to these in want,” he wrote.

Over the following a number of a long time, Kruzelnick grew “as an Airman and as an individual on each flightline around the globe,” he added.

As he climbed by means of the ranks and mentored youthful troops, Kruzelnick discovered his background, previously a hindrance, had turn out to be a energy.

“I really feel very snug main Mobility Airmen as a result of I had comparable experiences and may relate to their trials and tribulations in addition to their successes,” he wrote.

Leaders who wish to assist Airmen from many walks of life succeed should take the time to get to know their tales, Kruzelnick stated.

“In our ranks are these pushed and meek, robust and weak, carefree and overwhelmed,” he wrote. “As leaders, we will determine what issues however by no means who issues as a result of everybody does. We should have a curious nature to create alternatives to bond with each other.”

Chief Grasp Sgt. Brian Kruzelnick, command chief of Air Mobility Command, takes a selfie with Airman Management College college students at Misawa Air Base, Japan, December, 2019. (Courtesy picture)

Kruzelnick isn’t the one senior enlisted chief who reinvented himself within the Air Power. Chief Grasp Sergeant of the House Power Roger A. Towberman recounted his personal rocky highway to service on the AFA Warfare Symposium in March.

“I tousled my life in each approach possible between 17 and 22,” he stated. “I’ve stolen meals to feed myself. It doesn’t matter what I do—I don’t assume my debt with the USA Air Power, and now House Power, will ever be paid.”

The highest enlisted Guardian believes sharing these tales is a key a part of how the Division of the Air Power can meet a nationwide recruiting disaster, the place polls present fewer younger Individuals have an interest in serving within the army. He stated the service ought to spotlight “actual tales of teamwork, love, second possibilities, of late bloomers.”  

Kruzelnick has actually bloomed throughout his time within the Air Power. Based on his official biography, he served because the senior enlisted chief on the squadron, group, wing, and Numbered Air Power stage earlier than reaching AMC. His items have tasked with coaching, mobility, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance, digital assault, command and management, and house operations.

Kruzelnick emphasised empathy and endurance in his recommendation for Airmen who battle with psychological wellness, relationships, or understanding the “why,” as he as soon as did.

“Don’t hand over, have grace and preserve an open coronary heart,” he advised Air & House Forces Journal. “Most individuals actually do have your finest curiosity in thoughts. For people who lead these Airmen, have grace and don’t hand over on them. See these people for who they’re, previous life experiences and all. You may’t assist them get to a greater vacation spot if you happen to don’t know the place they’re ranging from. Meet them the place they’re and assist them get to a greater place.”