A new chain of command

From left: Milana Taylor, Kathryn Hendricks and Mandy Grogg became the Army ROTC Stonehenge Battalion’s first all-female chain of command. Photos submitted

When Milana Taylor, Kathryn Hendricks and Mandy Grogg were appointed to lead the university’s Army ROTC Stonehenge Battalion last fall, the trio became the battalion’s first all-female chain of command.

Watch the Change of Command Ceremony:

Taylor, from St. Robert, Mo., was selected for the position of cadet battalion commander — the highest post a student cadet can hold. Hendricks, a senior in engineering management from Bozeman, Mont., accepted the position of cadet command sergeant major while Grogg, a senior in English from Rolla, Mo., became the cadet battalion executive officer.

From left: Mandy Grogg, Milana Taylor and Kathryn Hendricks lead the university’s Army ROTC Stonehenge Battalion.

A specialist in the Army, Taylor is currently serving in the chemical brigade at Fort Leonard Wood. She’s seeking an Army officer commission and hopes to continue her career in the human resources field in the Medical Corps. She credits her success in part to the cadre and civilian staff’s tireless assistance.

“Being selected as the cadet battalion commander has been a humbling experience,” Taylor says. “Working with the cadet executive officer, Cadet Grogg, and the cadet battalion command sergeant major, Cadet Hendricks, has been quite the experience — in a good way. We work very well together as a command team.”

Hendricks joined the Army ROTC program at the end of her freshman year. As command sergeant major, she provides Taylor with personal, professional and technical advice.

“What started out as intimidating — and at times seemingly impossible — turned out to be the best decision of my life,” Hendricks says. “I can honestly say the work that I have done as a cadet in S&T’s ROTC program has been the greatest accomplishment in life thus far.”

Grogg joined the Stonehenge Battalion in fall 2011, after serving for a few years in the Missouri Army National Guard. She says although the Army ROTC requires hard work, the rewards have been “the absolute best.” As executive officer, she serves as Taylor’s principle staff officer and supervises all tasks assigned to the staff. She expects to be commissioned in May as a second lieutenant.

“The instructors effectively trained and prepared not only myself, but my military science class, to excel at Leader’s Development Assessment Course (LDAC) last summer,” Grogg says. “Every morning during our spring semester (and most weekends), we pushed ourselves physically and mentally to ensure we did our best at our assessment camp. I’m thankful that I chose this battalion and school to accomplish my goals.”

Story by Mindy Limback
Video by Terry Barner