Where I’m From: It’s About Being a Marine

Major Gen. Ronald L. Bailey.

The U.S. Marine Corps is using Black History month to launch its national campaign: Where I’m From, which showcases Marines and their hometowns.

Major General Ronald Bailey is a St. Augustine, FL  native and currently the Commanding General of the Marine Corps Recruiting Command and based in San Diego.

Bailey was a football star and member of the Army ROTC at Austin Peay State University when the Marine selection officer convinced him in 1977 to give the Corps a try.

“I fell for that old macho, ‘it’s too tough for you’ trick,” Bailey said. “After I got in the Marine Corps, I realized my personality and my goals and what I wanted to do in life and what I wanted to become were in line with the United States Marine Corps.”

He met  African American role models in the Corps who convinced him to make it his career. He said the military offered him opportunities and he agreed that the military has been in the forefront of social change such as dealing with desegregation after WWII.

“Work hard, do your job, be the best, then you’re going to be okay,” Bailey said. “You know as I and many in America understand the difficulties we’ve traveled, but we’ve grown from it and we’ve gotten past those and we still are getting past those.”

Major Gen. Ronald Bailey, center.

“Even when I look at the ‘Where I’m From’ Campaign, it’s a success story,” Bailey said. “You have individuals from their community showing that you too can be successful in life and you too can be a U.S. Marine.”

The campaign’s goal is to initiate a conversation with the American public not just the African American community. So, the multi-media campaign will continue beyond this month with TV and radio ads as well as internet banners. The “Where  I’m Fromwebsite shows a map with photos of Marines near their hometowns.

Initially, the Marine Commandant testified against lifting the “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” policy regarding military service members’ sexual orientation. But, Bailey said the commandant now says it’s a “leadership issue” and is “stepping forward and carrying out the policies of our nation.”

“The environment that I’m establishing on my base and the recruiting command is one of acceptance,” Bailey said. “To insure that every Marine will have the opportunity to reach his or her potential regardless of age, race, sexual orientation. It’s about being a Marine and Marines do the right thing.”

To learn more about the U.S. Marine Corps “Where I’m From Campaign”, click here.

One Response

  1. Thank You for your service!

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