Tsantles Assumes Command of USAISR Company
The U.S. Army Institute of Surgical Research welcomed 1st Sgt. Natasha M. Tsantles as the USAISR Company first sergeant Sept. 8. Tsantles takes her new role just six months after reporting to the USAISR Burn Center where she served as the senior clinical non-commissioned officer.
"I am truly humbled to be the ISR first sergeant," said Tsantles. "I am extremely excited to be leading and serving alongside Soldiers at one of the most innovative and forward-thinking platforms the Army has in its inventory."
Tsantles enlisted in the Army four months after graduating high school because at the time she was unsure of what she wanted to do for a career or how to get into college. So she decided to enlist in the Army for a four-year stint to become a practical nursing specialist.
"And here I am almost 17 years later, and I cannot see myself having it any other way," she said.
Tsantles said that she looks forward to being a first sergeant because she gets the opportunity to lead and train Soldiers every day.
"Being able to professionally develop the future leaders of our Army is an honor that I do not take lightly," she added. "Taking care of Soldiers and their families is more than a job, it's a privilege."
With a nursing background, the newly-appointed 1st Sgt. personally understands the challenges of having the Company Soldiers working two different schedules. Half of the Soldiers work on research and the other half on the clinical side where Soldiers and staff run 24-hour operations.
"As the first sergeant you want to ensure that Soldiers feel your presence at all times and that includes Soldiers working on night shifts," Tsantles said. "This is a leader challenge that can be easily overcome."
Tsantles said that the ISR staff can expect to always have an energetic and charismatic leader who truly wants what's best for them in their personal and professional lives.
"I will foster a climate where Soldiers can develop the attributes of a leader -- character, presence and intellect -- so they can be the most confident and agile Soldiers and leaders possible," she said.
In return she expects the Soldiers to give 100 percent in everything that they do and to be competent in their jobs. Tsantles believes that there is no task that is too small because everything contributes to the accomplishment of the USAISR mission.
"Whether a Soldier is taking the APFT, working on a research protocol or administering patient care, each and every Soldier is vital member of the team," Tsantles added. "Without their training, knowledge and skill set our mission would greatly degrade.
"Most of all, I want the ISR staff to know that I believe that we have the best organization in Army Medicine," she added. "We are the tip of the spear for combat casualty care and burn trauma, and I am amazed daily by what we accomplish."
On a personal note, Tsantles goal is to eventually retire from the Army as a sergeant major or command sergeant major. Meanwhile she is working on completing her master's in sports management with a concentration in coaching theory and strategy and hopes to have it completed by November.
Tsantles also shared that she is a huge New York Giants football fan and enjoys sports in general. She also enjoys all outdoor activities, physical fitness, reading, traveling and spending time with family and friends. "I would also like to run in the San Antonio Rock N Roll half marathon in December," she said.