We’d like to take a moment to welcome 1SG Gamio to our panel of subject matter experts. He runs a site of his own called Chemical Dragon which provides free resources available to Soldier’s like you. As part of his introduction to the team, we asked 1SG Gamio to tell him a little about himself.
1. 1SG Gamio, Tell us a little bit about yourself?
I am from Los Angeles, California. I enlisted in the Army in October 1995, as a Chemical Operations Specialist.
2. We noticed you have a website called ChemicalDragon.com can you tell us a little bit about that site and its purpose?
I am the sole editor and starter of Chemicaldragon.com website. I started it while I was stationed in Korea, six years ago. I initially started it as a study group page for the Sergeant Audie Murphy Club. I was in charge of the battalion SAMC study group, but was getting ready to PCS soon. In order to keep the information updated and relevant, I decided to start the webpage. From there I started adding products from my time in different positions in Army. The purpose was to share information and tools that has made me successful throughout the years and make it readily available.
3. Can you tell us something about your most memorable leadership experience while in the Army?
My most memorable leadership experience was from my first deployment to Iraq. I had an amazing group of Soldiers while I was the Platoon Sergeant for the Battalion’s Personal Security Detachment. During that time we conducted over 200 combat missions.
My platoon was also landowners and directly assisted three separate villages. We helped with water supply, schools, and any issues they may have had. It was very satisfying to see your direct actions helping so many needy people.
4. What skills do you bring to the ASKTOP.net Subject Matter Expert (SME) panel?
I bring my vast knowledge of running CBRN Rooms. I was an instructor as the US Chemical Corps school, where I help start and instruct the first CBRN Room operations lesson plan for IET Soldiers. I have been assigned to every echelon of CBRN Room operations from Company to Army level. I have also been on the 1ID IG Inspection team, tasked with inspecting all CBRN Rooms on Fort Riley.
5. What are you hoping to achieve as part of the ASKTOP.net SME panel?
I hope to just make our Soldiers and Leaders stronger and more proficient in CBRN operations and provide my mentorship to whoever is in need.
6. At ASKTOP.net we focus on Mentoring Soldiers/Leaders, can you share with us the most memorable Mentoring session you received from a senior leader and how it helped you grow as a leader?
This was during my last tour in Korea, six years ago. I was working directly for the 8th Army Chemical SGM. I had just come from serving as a Platoon Sergeant and some First Sergeant time as a senior SFC. I felt very confident in my knowledge and work ethic. I was put in a MSG position where the SGM challenged my knowledge and my physical stamina like it had never been before. I had someone who worked harder than me, someone who always went the extra mile, and someone who had better attention to detail than me. No one ever “red marked” my paperwork more than him. He made me read regulations that I thought I knew. I knew I could not ever slack on anything. He always treated me with dignity and respect, but corrected me with tact and questioning techniques.
I took his challenge and gave me the room to grow and perform above his high standards by the time I left. It brought me to a different level of professionalism and commitment to an organization and leaders.
7. What is the most significant leadership lesson learned of your military career?
Treat every Soldier like your little brother or little sister. For example, if your brother was going to the qualification range, would you go support or help him? If your sister failed her APFT, would you invest the time to help her pass? The answer should be, yes. Be firm and fair across the board…no matter the rank.
8. Is there anything specific you would like to share with our ASKTOP.net readers?
It is an honor to be brought into this All-Star team of SMEs. I am here to provide mentorship to all ranks and MOSs. I look forward to interacting with our future leaders.