1st Battalion, 161st Field Artillery
Mission: Destroy, neutralize, or suppress the enemy by cannon fire in support of a maneuver commander utilizing the M109A6 self-propelled Paladin howitzer. Maintain personnel, equipment and operational readiness in support of foreign contingencies. On order, provide domestic support operations for disaster response, humanitarian relief, and homeland defense activities.
Command Leadership and Unit Structure
The battalion commander is Lt. Col. Jeffrey Mann
The senior noncommissioned officer is Command Sgt. Maj. Danny Sullivan.
The 161st is composed of the following units:
- Headquarters and Headquarters Battery, Hutchinson
- Battery A, Dodge City
- Battery B, Abilene
- Battery C, Newton
2022 Unit Highlights
The 1st Battalion, 161st Field Artillery was tasked to support the 35th Infantry Division missions to U.S. Army Central for Operation Spartan Shield and Operation Inherent Resolve in 2022-23.
More than 80 Soldiers were tasked to support the mobilization of the 2nd Battalion, 130th Field Artillery for their mission to the U.S. Army Central's and Central Command's areas of responsibilities for Operation Spartan Shield, Operation Inherent Resolve and Operation Enduring Freedom.
The battalion conducted its annual training July 9-23 at Fort Riley. The focus was on certifying/qualifying five howitzer crews from the three firing batteries and two fire direction centers through Artillery Table VI section certification. Following that, the commander pushed to train the crews through Table XII platoon certification to further develop the available crews with an emphasis on special munitions, coordinated illumination, coordinated smoke mission and direct fire missions.
Five howitzer crews from the three firing batteries conducted over 200 fire missions and safely fired 500 high explosive rounds, 76 illumination rounds and 40 smoke rounds.
The battalion continues to prepare for their Modified Table of Organization and Equipment change in late training year 2023, increasing the battalion's number of Soldiers and weapons systems to meet the Army needs.
Much of this year's training was focused on enhancing personnel and equipment readiness. The battalion exceeded the assigned retention goal of the assistant adjutant general- Army by 12%. Soldiers of the battalion participated in 11 community out-reach events, greatly enhancing local community partnerships. The battalion also fostered a new partnership with 1st Battalion, 7th Field Artillery at Fort Riley.