***image1***The BOSS program in most Army communities stands for Better Opportunities for Single Soldiers; however, in the KMC, it stands for Better Opportunities for Single Servicemembers.
The Army founded BOSS in 1989, and over the years it has grown to a three pillared organization that helps single and unaccompanied Soldiers with recreation and leisure, community service and well-being issues.
The name was changed locally in 1997 because the 415th Base Support Battalion’s program wanted to open its doors to other military services, particularly the Air Force, because of the unique KMC demographics. The program here can’t address well-being issues for its airmen members, but it can still offer them opportunities for recreation, leisure and community service.
Changing the name worked because a dozen or so single Air Force members have off-and-on joined BOSS and about two years ago the vice president was an airman, according to Army Staff Sgt. Bennie Kirk, the current BOSS president, 415th BSB.
However, the BOSS president and the 415th BSB Command Sgt. Major Olga Martinez want to increase their airmen membership.
“It’s important to have airmen as a part of BOSS because we are an Army and Air Force community,” said Command Sergeant Major Martinez. “And, it’s very important that we can work, spend leisure time and volunteer together.”
With that in mind, Command Sergeant Major Martinez and Sergeant Kirk recently discussed BOSS opportunities with 1st Sgt. Steve Conners and Airman 1st Class John Ulyak, from the 435th Medical Squadron, the only Air Force squadron located at Landstuhl Regional Medical Center.
“I was happy to find out that the folks from BOSS were coming here to talk to us about the opportunities they can provide for our single airmen,” said First Sergeant Conners. “I only knew BOSS as an acronym. When I found out what it stood for, I knew we had airmen who were willing to be a part of that program.”
The meeting came about through email traffic between Sergeant Kirk, who wanted to make BOSS a stronger program, and Airman Ulyak, who wanted to offer more recreation and volunteering opportunities for single and unaccompanied airmen in his squadron.
“Our intentions were to try and open a conduit between both commands,” said Airman Ulyak, who is the president of the 435th Medical Squadron dormitory, which houses 35 single airmen.
The meeting ended with information sharing, and both sides agreeing that airmen and Soldiers can benefit through the BOSS program.
“Airmen have always been part of our program, but we are trying to make it stronger and bring them into the program on a more fulltime basis,” said Sergeant Kirk. “We want to get the whole KMC area of single and unaccompanied airmen so we all have more options and opportunities.”
For more information on the BOSS program, call Sergeant Kirk at 489-6833 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.