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Senior Assistant Secretary of the Army Reginald Brown Retired January 28, 2005

By Eric Cramer
Army News Service

WASHINGTON (Army News Service Jan 31, 2005) -- Reginald Brown, assistant secretary of the Army for Manpower and Reserve Affairs, retired in a Jan. 28 ceremony.

Brown had served as assistant secretary, a position next in the chain of command after the Undersecretary of the Army, since July 12, 2001.

During his time as assistant secretary, he served as a member of the Department of Defense National Security Personnel System Overarching Integrated Product Team, helping transform the DoD civilian personnel system. Brown helped design, develop and implement NSPS.

Brown joined the Army after graduating from West Point in 1961, and served in the Army until 1971. During his time in the Army he earned a master’s degree in public administration from the Kennedy School at Harvard

Following his military service, Brown held a variety of positions in and out of government service.

“The biggest change I’ve seen during my time is the volunteer Army,” Brown said. “The volunteer Army is head and shoulders above the draft Army. It’s more motivated, better educated and trained, and I don’t think it has an equal out there. I couldn’t always say that.”

As for his own accomplishments, Brown singled out his work in 1979 with the President’s Commission on Military Pay.

“That helped us see the difference between the tools people use for recruitment and retention in the real world, and the tools we use here in the Department of Defense,” Brown said.

He also learned to see the “big picture.”

“It helped me set my mind for working here. A lot of people focus on solving just their own problems, without realizing that fixing their problem might affect someone else – that was a powerful lesson I took from that experience,” he said.

Brown also served with the U.S. Agency for International Development during the President George H. W. Bush’s administration.

“It taught me the importance of foreign aid,” Brown said. “ I got to see the many facets of how our government accomplishes its foreign policy objectives. Sometimes an effective foreign aid is worth four combat brigades.”

He said this lesson served him well in a number of situations, and the Army as a whole has learned the same lesson.

“The Army itself recognized the value of aid-like things,” Brown said. “In this asymmetric warfare today, we have to deal with the full spectrum; people, families, food – its not just taking out combat units anymore.”

Brown said he is still evaluating what he will do in retirement, but he has no regrets.

“I’ve enjoyed my service here. It’s been a rare privilege to serve the way that I have.”

Upon his retirement, Brown received the Army decoration for Distinguished Civilian Service, the Department of the Navy Distinguished Public Service Award and the Department of Defense Outstanding Public Service Award.














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