• Current, former Lamp staffers reunite

  • It’s professional and personal.

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    • Former Lampie reflects

      Adrian Lugo | Former Staff Writer


      I wanted to take a moment to thank the Fort Leavenworth Lamp and the Public Affairs Office for hosting a great and memorable reunion for us old Lampie...

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      Former Lampie reflects

      Adrian Lugo | Former Staff Writer



      I wanted to take a moment to thank the Fort Leavenworth Lamp and the Public Affairs Office for hosting a great and memorable reunion for us old Lampies!



      Bob, Prudy, new and old staff, you are all amazing!



      A lot has changed in the 14 years since I last wore a "green suit" and roamed around the old U.S. Disciplinary Barracks and Bell Hall looking for stories as a young reporter. In fact, both are now long gone in that short span of time!



      The only thing that hasn’t changed is the very important role Fort Leavenworth plays in securing, innovating and educating future leaders. As an educator, I marvel at the opportunities available for officers in the Command and General Staff College to enroll in ivy-league cohorts and am even more impressed with the state-of-the-art facilities at the Lewis and Clark Center that replaced Bell Hall.



      My friends and colleagues were very fortunate to get a behind-the-scenes tour of the center courtesy of Jerry Hansen. We are very appreciative of the historical knowledge and current insight he shared; and the middle-schooler in me was also excited to see the center’s little-known, yet awesome, historical G.I. Joe collection!



      While it was nice to reminisce with colleagues, it was more comforting to see that "The Army Goes Rolling Along" into the future by continuing to create innovative educational opportunities for its future leaders.



       

  • Christopher Burnett | Staff Writer
    It was great to meet everyone who attended the first-ever reunion of the Fort Leavenworth Lamp newspaper staff June 30 through July 2.
    As the “new guy,” it was nice to meet some of the people associated with the names I have heard spoken of fondly by longtime staff members.
    The nickname “Lampie” is a play on the name of the publication we produce each week. Lamp Editor Bob Kerr remembered the nickname being used when he was the Lamp’s uniformed editor more than 25 years ago.
    Lamp Photographer Prudence Siebert organized the event, producing the itinerary, planning group activities and managing all logistics. She also wrangled all of the former soldiers, Army civilians and contractor employees she could find by telephone and e-mail, resulting in a pretty nice turnout.
    An objective measure of the cultural environment of an organization includes how well the people get along with each other during off hours when they technically don’t have to associate with one another.
    The Lampies, old and new, who were able to attend the reunion got along great together. Old friendships renewed, and new Facebook friends were found during the three days of collegial activities.
    Among the activities I enjoyed was a canoe race that included paddling around a course on Smith Lake, then shooting a basketball at the end — while still in the boat on the lake.
    It was my first time in a canoe. I had no idea what I was doing. And, come to find out my teammate, Katie Peterson, our current Lamp production assistant, was a first-time canoeist as well.
    Normally, I would not have remotely done the race because, although I can swim, I rarely swim for recreation or fun. Confession — I only learned to swim proficiently as an adult and primarily to be able to save my children when they were young pool-goers.
    However, with encouragement from my wife, Terri, I broke through a personal barrier, let my inherently formal personality be more spontaneous than usual, and just did it. It was fun. I would do it again, even without the racing part.
    Our team came in last by about two laps during the canoe race. I think we would have been more competitive if we had split Katie and me up, then teamed us with one of the more experienced rowers in the other tandem on our squad. Ultimately, I don’t think it mattered to anyone who won, and that attitude set a collegial tone.
    In retrospect and consideration of the reunion as a whole, I learned a couple of things about myself once again.
    Over the years it seems we all develop our routines and find individual comfort zones, often when we don’t think we have done so. That was the case with me regarding this reunion because I consider myself a pretty open person. But, I have a propensity to choose to work in solitude and anonymity. Or, simply be with my family. I think the acclimation to isolation comes from practicing and writing music for most of the years of my life and to this day.
    Page 2 of 2 - So, although I am a professional musician who has no problem performing in front of hundreds or thousands of people, playing music on radio or television, or speaking and lecturing publicly for hours on end, I am an introvert socially.
    Since I regularly see superficial stage personas in play among people in the entertainment world, it naturally takes a protracted vetting process for me to become friends with others. I have to check other people out for a while before letting down my self-preservation instincts.
    All of this to say, I found all of the alumni Lampies to be great people. The current Lampies have been welcoming to me since my first day as the staff writer for the newspaper. I like them too.
    The slogan on the back of the reunion T-shirt: “That didn’t suck as bad as last time” — a back-handed compliment that every Lampie has heard at least once — says a lot about the organizational culture.
    The workplace environment is healthy and even humorous at times. Fun. Rewarding. It is one where excellence is a matter of course and the quality of the product we produce each week is our collective passion. It’s professional and personal. The people are great humans. I feel welcomed and mentored here. So, I guess I am now officially a Lampie — and proud of it.
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