Rochelle talks USFK quality of life changes
Stars and Stripes June 9, 2007
SEOUL — Quality of life, service retention and promotions were among topics discussed Thursday by the Army’s top experts on personnel issues during a visit to South Korea.
In an American Forces Network-Korea radio broadcast, Deputy Chief of Staff for Personnel Lt. Gen. Michael Rochelle and his top enlisted adviser, Sgt. Maj. Michael Croom, highlighted changes soldiers can expect to see in the near future.
Rochelle said the push to station more command-sponsored families in South Korea will be good for force stability and the impression the U.S. Army makes on the host nation.
For decades, South Korea has been considered a “single” soldier billet, meaning married soldiers left their families behind in the United States while they served one-year tours.
Many soldiers, however, elect to pay out of pocket to move their families to South Korea to avoid the separation.
“We can do better as an Army to take care of those families, many of whom are here non-command sponsored,” Rochelle said.
Those spouses provide input on whether soldiers stay in the service or get out, he explained.
As for the issue of keeping soldiers in the ranks, Rochelle said the Army is trying to offer a menu of incentives and options.
One option is the “Officer Critical Retention Bonus,” which Rochelle said targets junior captains with an offer of $20,000 to extend their service.
Among other issues discussed: