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NEWS | Aug. 25, 2022

Planting the seeds of victory: 75th Innovation Command Soldier competes in Interallied Confederation of Reserve Officers Military Competition

By Staff Sgt. John Carkeet IV 75th Innovation Command

U.S. Army Capt. Justin Weeks embraced the full spectrum warrior philosophy by integrating his U.S. Army special forces training with his Fortune 500 project management skills as he and his fellow U.S. Army Reserve Soldiers competed in the 2022 Interallied Confederation of Reserve Officers Military Competition (CIOR MILCOMP) hosted Aug. 1-5 at the Helenic Military Academy in Athens, Greece.

The CIOR MILCOMP is a three-day team competition consisting of NATO and Partnership for Peace nations in Europe. Since its inception in 1957, the CIOR MILCOMP has challenged the minds, bodies and spirits of hundreds of service members across dozens of countries in a series of grueling, graded events. From water obstacle and land navigation courses to hand grenade tosses and combat casualty care, this annual competition pushes the physical and mental limits at the individual and team level.

"I've always enjoyed competitions and was surprised to see that I could compete at the international level," said Weeks, who serves an innovation officer for the Seattle Team, Mountain View Group, 75th Innovation Command. "It was truly fantastic to train, compete and share stories with fellow U.S. Army Soldiers and our NATO allies who are both skilled warriors and accomplished civilians."

The bonds formed among Weeks, his teammates and NATO partners opened the possibility of integrating a cyber element to future competitions.

"My experience in the 75th and my civilian occupation prepared me to have conversations with other members of CIOR regarding the cyber domain," said Weeks, who, when not wearing the uniform, serves as a senior project manager at Microsoft. "There is a desire to have more partnership and cooperation regarding cyber during the next CIOR. The background I have allowed those conversations to happen."

Weeks also sees opportunities to use the CIOR MILCOMP as a template for competitions hosted by the 75th IC.

"I think the real value for the 75th IC resides in the competitions we support and put on such as hackathons," Weeks explained. "Similar to CIOR MILCOMP, hackathons brings unique perspectives and capabilities to solve problems and test our allies' mettle. We have the access and placement within innovative areas of expertise to enable and participate in our own competitions."

The 75th Innovation Command drives operational innovation, concepts and capabilities to enhance the readiness and lethality of the Future Force by leveraging the unique skills, agility and private sector connectivity of America's Army Reserve. Learn more at