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U.S. Army Spc. Miranda Pressley
BOSS Representative Enhances Unit’s Morale
By Capt. Lyn Graves
133rd Mobile Public Affairs Detachment
KIRKUK, Iraq, July 18, 2006 — Keeping up a deployed unit’s morale is vital to sustained operational readiness, and one 101st Airborne Division soldier, who helps keep morale in Iraq high, is the morale “BOSS.”

Spc. Miranda Pressley is the battalion Better Opportunities for Single Soldiers, or BOSS, representative for Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 426th Brigade Support Battalion, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division.

The BOSS program provides an organized outlet for single soldiers to interact in positive, constructive activities. While deployed, BOSS expands to allow married soldiers to enjoy the program.

U.S. Army Spc. Miranda Pressley “Everyone can participate while deployed; it’s a great morale booster,” said Pressley.

Pressley was her company’s BOSS representative prior to being assigned as the battalion BOSS representative. This is quite an accomplishment for a specialist and a recent high school graduate.  Her high school career, at Western Guilford High School in Greensboro, N.C., prepared her for this job as she was involved in a variety of activities, including: cheerleading, band, yearbook editor, volunteer activities and Beta Club.

“I think it’s fun, I like to stay involved,” said Pressley.

Pressley involves herself in almost every aspect of planning morale events for her battalion, from making up flyers to preparing sign-up sheets.  She puts out schedules for events and coordinates with company representatives to make the best plan for the entire battalion. 

“We all get out our calendars and look to see what the best time is for everyone,” explained Pressley.

Pressley said one frustration is that she cannot always plan a time that works with everyone’s schedule.

“We are at war, and so missions come first, but we always try to make a schedule that works for as many people as possible.”

Soldiers race to finish their glasses of milk in the “Bust a Gut” morale event sponsored by the 426th Brigade Support Battalion, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division. U.S. Army photo by Spc. Miranda Pressley

Pressley plans at least two morale events every month, usually more.  Events include softball or ping-pong tournaments, volleyball, game nights, and movie nights.

Pressley said that she tries to come up with different activities to keep things fresh.  One recent event was the “Bust a Gut” competition, an eating contest where soldiers ate hot dogs or hard boiled eggs and won prizes based on who ate the most in a timed competition. 

“People donate goods and gift packages, and these usually go to the chaplain’s assistant, so we can use these gifts as prizes for the events to make it more fun for everyone.  Some of the gifts have included video game systems, CDs and DVDs as well as all kinds of games,” said Pressley.

More than 150 people from the United States have “adopted” Pressley’s battalion and sent gifts.

“Someone donated a karaoke machine and a popcorn machine, so one time we had karaoke and popcorn night,” said Pressley. “That was very popular.”

Pressley, who comes from a military family, said providing morale events for deployed soldiers is fulfilling.

“Being a BOSS representative is very rewarding, you get to see people enjoy doing things they like to do.  It’s amazing to work together, to see what you can accomplish.”

Last Updated:
07/18/2006, Eastern Daylight Time
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