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Minnesota National Guard
City, county will go 'Beyond the Yellow Ribbon'

Submitted by Brent Schacherer on April 8, 2011 - 4:59pm

Helping soldiers readjust to life after service on foreign soil is the aim of the Beyond the Yellow Ribbon initiative created by the Minnesota National Guard

This week, Litchfield and Meeker County governmental units signed on to be part of the effort

"We're looking at trying to take resources across the community and county level to create awareness to serve service members and their families," 2nd Lt Seth Goreham, Yellow Ribbon outreach coordinator, told the Litchfield City Council Monday night "There's a lot of issues that go on 90 to 120 days after they come back"

Beyond the Yellow Ribbon does not seek financial support from communities, Goreham said Instead, it seeks services - everything from mental health counseling to volunteers who can mow the lawn or shovel the sidewalk for the family of a service member who has been deployed

Goreham, along with Jeffrey Gay of the Minnesota Military Family Assistance Center, and Carmen Brunsvold of the Military Public Services Corp, visited the Litchfield City Council Monday, and Goreham continued his awareness campaign Tuesday by addressing the Meeker County Board of Commissioners

He asked both bodies for a vote of support for Beyond the Yellow Ribbon and for both to appoint a member to a steering committee that would help establish a local Yellow Ribbon organization Goreham explained that the steering committee should include one or two representatives from about 16 areas, including education, health care and law enforcement Once the steering committee is established, its members would become the "go-to" people when a soldier or soldier's family needs assistance

"The Guard comes in to help set it up, and you run with it They (the steering committee members) run the show," Goreham said "They decide what we're going to want to do"

Currently, there are 27 individual cities that have been proclaimed Beyond the Yellow Ribbon communities, some of them joining the program in cooperation with other communities The first Yellow Ribbon city, Goreham said, was Farmington, which was proclaimed in 2005

The goal is to extend the Yellow Ribbon effort to every community in the state that has an active armory

Though initially unsure of exactly what was required of the city, the City Council offered unanimous support for the Yellow Ribbon request

That was followed up by approval from the Meeker County Board Tuesday

"It's important to take care of these people," Mayor Keith Johnson said Monday "You know, these people come home and nobody thinks about them We need to continue to support them"

Ward 1 council member Barb Altringer volunteered to be the city's representative on the Yellow Ribbon steering committee

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Month of the Military Child recognizes contributions of military kids

Posted: 2018-04-07  01:54 PM
Minnesota National Guard FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 7, 2018

ST. PAUL, Minn.- The month of April is designated as the Month of the Military Child to recognize the contributions and sacrifices military children make so their family members can serve. An estimated 15,000 children in Minnesota have been affected by the deployment of a parent.

"Military children bear a lot while their family members serve," said Maj. Gen. Jon Jensen, Adjutant General of the Minnesota National Guard. "It is up to us to support these resilient kids and help to lessen their burden."

An event to honor military kids in Minnesota will take place April 13, 2018, at the Mall of America rotunda from 2:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. Activities will include appearances by the Teddy Bear Band and meet and greets with Nickelodeon characters.

Forging a path to career success

Posted: 2018-03-16  08:45 AM
Col. Angela Steward-Randle ST. PAUL, Minn. - Col. Angela Steward-Randle grew up in a military family - her father served in the Army on active duty - but it was a chance encounter with a friend at college that led her to want to make the military a career.

"My story is no different than many others," Steward-Randle, the Director of Human Resources, Manpower and Personnel for the Minnesota National Guard said. "I was in college and looking for financial resources to help pay for it."

Her college friend suggested they attend a summer training with the Reserve Officer Training Corps that had no obligation and could earn them some money. The friend never ended up going, but Steward-Randle did. After earning recognition as the top honor graduate and receiving an offer of a scholarship, she was hooked.

Minnesota Guardsman Receives Award for Combating Drugs in his Community

Posted: 2018-03-09  03:13 PM
Counterdrug WOODBURY, Minn. - Staff Sgt. Benjamin Kroll, an analyst with the Minnesota National Guard's Counterdrug Task Force who is assigned to work with the Hennepin County Sherriff's Office was recognized for his achievements as the Analyst of the Year during the 2018 Minnesota Association of Crime and Intelligence Analysts Training Symposium in Woodbury, Minnesota, March 7, 2018.

Through a partnership with Minnesota law enforcement agencies throughout the state, the Minnesota National Guard Counterdrug Task Force (MNCDTF) supports the anti-drug initiatives to counter all primary drug threats and vulnerabilities through the effective application of available assets, said Maj. Jon Dotterer, Counterdrug Coordinator for the State of Minnesota. The goal for the program is to support federal, state, tribal, and local agencies in the detection, disruption, interdiction, and curtailment of illicit drugs.

Kroll is one of sixteen service members on the Counterdrug Task Force that provides this force-multiplying service to our communities against illicit drug-use. With the information that law enforcement provide through their patrols and daily operations, Kroll and his colleagues across the state assist by putting together a figurative picture with all of the gathered information which aids in identifying how to move forward with legal action to deter or prevent the sale or use of illegal narcotic drugs.

Women Opened Doors in Minnesota National Guard

Posted: 2018-03-08  09:05 AM
Minnesota National Guard ST. PAUL, Minn. - "The battlefront is no place for women to be," said Command Sgt. Maj. Earl Kurtzweg, 125th Field Artillery, in an article published in 1976. "There are certain jobs girls say they can do, but they just can't do ... the battlefront is no place for women to be. Other countries in the world use women in combat, but the U.S. has not come around to that way of thinking." Kathy Berg, a New Ulm reporter summarized at the time. "So women in the New Ulm unit take care of personnel files and pay records and leave the fighting to the men."

The Minnesota National Guard has "come around to that way of thinking" since those early days of gender integration. In the last 44 years women have made momentous strides toward inclusion and acceptance. Their accomplishments are testimony to their fortitude and the progressive development of the Minnesota National Guard.

When an accomplished female Soldier is credited with breaking barriers she will often pass that honor to the women that preceded her. Brig. Gen. Johanna Clyborne is such a leader. She acknowledges that she is one of the first females in the Minnesota National Guard who has held key leadership roles, however she sees it differently. "I feel responsible for all women in uniform," said Clyborne. "Women before me opened the door, now I've cleared the room. It's up to the women behind me to hold the room."

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