History
Minnesota National Guard
The Minnesota National Guard Celebrates Women's History Month

The Minnesota National Guard honors its women in uniform as part of Women's History Month. Women in the Minnesota National Guard have contributed greatly to the success of missions over the years. From the beginning of women's entry into the military, through the Women's Army Auxiliary Corps in 1941, to the full integration of women into the National Guard, women have continually met and exceeded standards and helped shape the mold of modern-day Minnesota National Guard Soldiers and Airmen. Many women worked through stereotypes in everything from training to uniforms to operations, and paved the way for the current role of women in the Guard.

Through the years, women continually made the same sacrifices that men made. They made these sacrifices not only with aspirations of earning an equal status with men, but more importantly, with the goal of completing all missions with a standard of excellence. Today, women's roles are still being reviewed and expanded. Changes are continuing to occur for women in the military and they will continue to make huge strides towards equality on the home front and in combat.

In total, more than 2.5 million women have served in defense of our nation since its beginning over 230 years ago. Presently, women continue to be a vital component in the military. With 1,971 in the Minnesota National Guard, women account for 17.2% of the Minnesota Air Guard and 15.1% of the Minnesota Army Guard. The Minnesota National Guard recognizes Women's History Month in recognition for the more than 405,600 Active Duty, Guard and Reserve women who serve today around the globe--professional, capable women leaders--who are making a difference for themselves, their communities, the nation and the world.

Women in Combat Units

The Department of Defense announced several policy changes in 2013 regarding women who serve in the military, including rescinding the Ground Combat Exclusion Rule which prevented women from being assigned to combat units below the brigade level. The Minnesota National Guard's 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team volunteered to be one of the test brigades to incorporate women into positions within units at the headquarters level of combat arms battalions that were previously unavailable to them.

This process does not involve opening prohibited specialties up to women, but rather enabling women to serve in jobs that are already available to both genders in units that once did not allow females. This effort is part of a larger, phased implementation plan to remove gender-based barriers to service in all of the armed forces.

At the direction of the National Guard Bureau, mid-grade females in the officer and enlisted ranks were considered first to begin the transition. Prior to implementation, the Minnesota National Guard asked for volunteers to consider either moving into positions that were already vacant or exchanging positions where the move benefited Soldiers of each gender. Future vacancies will be filled through the Enlisted Promotion System, allowing the best-qualified individual - male or female - to be considered for the position.

The units involved in this process received specific training prior to personnel assignments taking place. The training addressed equal opportunity, sexual harassment and sexual assault response and prevention to prepare for the transition.

Nationally, formerly male-only specialties in combat engineering will be available for women in summer 2014; and field artillery, armor and infantry jobs are expected to be open to females in summer 2015. Full gender-neutral availability is anticipated by 2016.

Download photos


Minnesota National Guard Senior Enlisted Advisor position changes hands
09/27/2014

First Female Takes Command of Previously All-Male Unit
09/18/2014

Minnesota National Guard Hosts Women's Equality Event
08/05/2014

Steak send-off for deploying troops
05/23/2014

Minnesota National Guard promotes career development for females
03/10/2014

Minnesota Guardsman takes pride in her cultural heritage
02/19/2014

Minnesota National Guard female leaders speak about helping military families, working and raising children
12/02/2013

Milaca girl soldier inspires students
11/21/2013

Habitat For Humanity Builds Home in Crystal for Woman in Minn. National Guard (video)
10/19/2013

Operation Agriculture: Minnesota Guard assists Afghan farmers
05/15/2013

Aspiring pilot gets first-hand look at military aviation
04/26/2013

Lt. Tara Robertson - A Story of Service
03/27/2013

Women in combat: Minnesota National Guard helps pave the way
01/25/2013

Serving Her Community And Country
09/12/2012

Zabul Agri-business Development Team assists in opening of slaughterhouse in Afghanistan
08/12/2012

Women help carry VFW's torch as older vets pass away
08/09/2012

Army combatives tourney offers arena for gender-equality fight
07/27/2012

Twins show appreciation for Armed Forces with annual game celebration
07/01/2012

Women Vets honored at golf tournament
06/18/2012

Honoring Our Women Veterans (video)
06/18/2012

Gov. Dayton is scheduled to proclaim June 18 as Minnesota Women Veterans Day
06/01/2012

Female competitor trains for All Army combatives tournament
05/29/2012

Awards pile up for local female guard member
05/07/2012

March's Veteran Of The Month: Capt. Andrea Bond
02/28/2012

Minnesota military wives meet Army Wivesť
02/24/2012

Minnesota Army wives win trip to Army Wives studio
01/11/2012

Kallberg assumes responsibility as first female Senior Enlisted Advisor
12/03/2011

Women Veterans Group Changes a Paradigm
08/25/2011

Minnesota Guard awarded for Excellence in Sexual Assault Response
04/15/2011

Go Home can be toughest order
11/28/2010

NGB Command Chief Master Sgt. Denise Jelinski-Hall visits the 148th Fighter Wing
11/22/2010

Struggling to serve women vets
11/17/2010

Military Women- from Boot Camp to Veteran
05/22/2010

Military Mom
05/08/2010

North Hudson woman has busy life as civilian and soldier
03/07/2010

New Senior Enlisted Leader Brings Passion for National Guard to Position
11/24/2009

Women Veterans of Minnesota
10/11/2009

65 years later female WWII test pilots finally recognized
08/13/2009

Betty Strohfus: A Tale of Love at First Flight
07/28/2009

Mothers Day in Iraq; When Mommy wears combat boots
05/10/2009

For this Minnesota family, love is a battlefield
08/19/2008

The Face of Today's National Guard
03/10/2008

Parents on the front lines
03/10/2008

We're Pilots-No Problem
02/24/2008

Sadar City from a Minnesota Woman's Helicopter
01/14/2008

Women take to the skies on Christmas
12/29/2007

Hermantown woman to become command chief of the 148th Fighter Wing
11/17/2007

From Soldier to Stylist: Woman Relishes Return to Civilian Life
09/17/2007

Fellow Soldiers Respect Woman Who Can Do Job
07/01/2007

Celebrating Mother's Day With A Child In Iraq
05/13/2007

Minnesota National Guard women deploy
04/10/2007

Women's History Month honored in the Minnesota Guard
03/27/2007

Race for the Cure raises $15,500 for breast cancer research
12/18/2006

Guard wives bond remains as strong as ever
10/03/2006

A Mom on a Mission for Mothers Day
05/10/2006



Helpful Links

Women's Military Service Memorial

National Women's History Project

Defense Advisory Committee on Women in the Services (DACOWITS)

Federally Employed Women

U.S. Department of Labor: Women's Bureau

U.S. Office of Personnel Management: Women in the Federal Government



Articles archive

In The News archive

Media Advisory archive

Latest News

Bearcats toast mission success

Posted: 2014-10-23  12:31 PM
Bearcat MAHNOMEN, Minn.- Soldiers, families and friends of the 2nd Combined Arms Battalion, 136th Infantry Regiment attended the unit's annual Bearcat Dinner, October 18, 2014.

The dinner, a tradition for the battalion, celebrated the proud lineages of the unit, as well as highlighted the accomplishments they have made over the past year.

"We have devoted a great deal of effort to pay attention to our unit readiness," said Sgt. 1st Class Shane Haugen, admin NCO for the battalion.



114th Transportation Company Welcome Home Ceremony

Posted: 2014-10-22  03:53 PM
Minnesota National Guard CHISHOLM, Minn.- The Minnesota National Guard's Chisholm-based 114th Transportation Company is scheduled to hold their 30-day reintegration event and welcome home ceremony Saturday at Chisholm High School after a nine-month deployment to Afghanistan.

"A priority of the Minnesota National Guard is to improve the wellness and resiliency of service members and their family members," said Army Capt. Ryan R. Koester, 114th Transportation Company Commander.



Minnesota Military Radio talks Veterans Voices, sequestration

Posted: 2014-10-22  09:00 AM
Minnesota Military Radio SAINT PAUL, Minn. - The Minnesota Humanities Center honored 30 Minnesota Veterans who have gone above and beyond the call of duty with the 2014 Veterans' Voices awards, September 11, 2014. Two of these veterans - Dennis Schulstad, an Air Force veteran and retired brigadier general, and Capt. Amber Manke, a current member of the Minnesota Army National Guard - recently spoke about their community involvement on Minnesota Military Radio.

The Minnesota Humanity Center's veterans voices program draws on the power of humanities to call attention to the stories and contributions of veterans. It empowers Minnesota veterans to speak in their own voices through plays, art, discussion groups and the veterans voices award.

Also this week on Minnesota Military Radio, Col. (Ret.) Don Kerr warned listeners of the coming effects on the Minnesota National Guard due to congressional gridlock. Kerr, the president of the Vessey Chapter of the Association of the United States Army, reminded listeners that the coming automatic budget cut, known as sequestration, has returned and will mean a loss of about 80,000 Soldiers across the Army nationwide.



1/34th Brigade Special Troop Battalion Reorganizes; The Army of 2020

Posted: 2014-10-18  10:31 AM
334th BEB CAMP RIPLEY, Minn.- The 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team, 34th Infantry Division (1/34th ABCT) completed its official reorganization of the 1/34th Brigade Special Troops Battalion (1/34th BSTB) to the 334th Brigade Engineer Battalion (334th BEB), Oct. 18, 2014.

"This unit reorganization lays the groundwork for meeting the Army's 2020 vision in which brigades are self-contained combined arms formations," said Col. Robert Intress, 1/34th ABCT Commander.



133rd Airlift Wing Welcomes home Security Forces Squadron members from deployment

Posted: 2014-10-16  09:34 AM
Minnesota National Guard ST. PAUL, Minn.- Thirteen airmen from the Minnesota National Guard's 133rd Airlift Wing Security Forces Squadron are scheduled to return Friday to Minnesota following a four-month deployment to Southwest Asia.

"During this deployment, the 133rd airmen melded with their active duty counterparts and utilized their citizen-airmen experiences and training to help fight the war on terrorism in an overseas environment," said Col. Terrance Sieben, the security forces squadron commander.



MPD Sgt. Blackwell: 'We're human, we have hearts, we care about people'

Posted: 2014-10-15  08:42 AM
Minnesota National Guard MINNEAPOLIS, Minn.(KMSP)- Talking with Minneapolis police Sgt. Katie Blackwell, it's clear she truly cares about her job and the people who live and work in the first precinct.When a man was sexually assaulting women in Ramp C downtown last week Sgt. Blackwell took it personally, making his arrest a top priority. The suspect was in custody within 48 hours.

"We just won't tolerate predators walking through our city and our communities, so yeah, I took it pretty personally," Sgt. Blackwell said.

To understand why she cares so much, one has to know where she's coming from, and it's quite a story. She grew up one of 10 kids in northeast Minneapolis, something Sgt. Blackwell says helps her connect with her community.



Article archive
 
top