For the first time in over a year, there was a feeling of near normalcy in Tampa, Florida as the Global SOF Foundation hosted its annual SOF Symposium at the Grand Hyatt in downtown Tampa, a venue that last month had hosted one of the teams for the Super Bowl. 

With about 30 sponsors and exhibitor tables, attendees were able to network with each other and the exhibitors, something that has been missing throughout the past year due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. 

While the threat of the coronavirus remains, the Hyatt was chosen, Global SOF’s President and CEO Stuart Bradin said, because it meets the high standards that the government requires. Plus the warm Tampa weather allowed for networking among members outside in the warmth. So, while there were people wearing masks, (many of the vendors and exhibitors offering their own, with logos) and social distancing rules were exercised, it felt almost normal.

Bradin welcomed the well-attended, extremely well-organized event. Many members of the SOCOM community were present as well as military Special Operations professionals from many of our allies including, but not limited to, Germany, France, the Netherlands, the Czech Republic, Chile, Norway, Japan, and Armenia.