Two Moc Battalion Cadets Commissioned as Officers

Dec 17, 2013

by Cary McMullen | Publications Editor

Challenged to become “doers and dreamers” by a senior officer and Florida Southern alumnus who once stood in their place, two members of FSC’s ROTC Moccasin Battalion received their officer’s commissions in a ceremony in Annie Pfeiffer Chapel on Dec. 13.

Cadets Nancy Glesil Akers and Jose Antonio Mascorro were commissioned as second lieutenants in the U.S. Army. Akers, who graduated the day after her commissioning, will enter the Army Reserves with her duty yet to be determined. Mascorro, a Southeastern University student who trained with the Moccasin Battalion, will enter the military intelligence service of the Florida Army National Guard in Miami.

The guest speaker at the commissioning ceremony was U.S. Army Col. Richard Root ’89, who is the executive officer to the army’s chief of legislative liaison in Washington. Prior to assuming that post, he served in Afghanistan on the staff of Gen. John Allen as the director of legislative affairs for the International Security Assistance Force. Root has 24 years of military service, and he has been awarded the Meritorious Service Medal, two Bronze Stars, and the Purple Heart, among other decorations.

In his remarks, Root recalled he had last been in Annie Pfeiffer Chapel 25 years before when he was married. He expressed confidence that Akers and Mascorro would have “long and distinguished careers of service to our nation” and quoted retired Gen. Colin Powell.

“Leadership is not about your rank, it’s about people. … I challenge you now to energize people to become doers and dreamers. I challenge you to pledge yourselves to something greater than yourself,” he said.

Root was introduced by Lt. Col. Scott LaRonde, FSC battalion commander. He told Akers and Mascorro, “From childhood, your task has been to learn. Now you are expected to lead. I hope I have taught you that leadership is not about physical ability but mental agility.”

Prior to the ceremony, LaRonde announced that MBA student Todd Kuzma had received a two-year ROTC scholarship, and Kuzma was sworn in as a cadet.