| Emmy for AU instructor
An Air Force Officer Training School instructor from the Iowa Air National Guard has won an Emmy for videography in Afghanistan
Capt Peter Shinn was a key part of the team that put together “Iowa Soldiers Remember Afghanistan,” which aired on Iowa Public Television on Veterans Day in 2011 The program won the 2012 Emmy for best Military Program in the Upper Midwest Region
The program, produced by David Miller, chronicled the 2010-2011 deployment of Iowa National Guardsmen with the 2nd Brigade Combat Team and 734th Agribusiness Development Team and documented their feelings about the deployment after returning home
Shinn served as the ADT’s public affairs officer, producing the on-location portions of the program and providing Miller with footage of the team’s work in Afghanistan
“Captain Shinn was integral to this production,” Miller said “Without his video of the 734th ADT, I would not have been able to properly tell the story about Iowans serving in Afghanistan”
The Army general who commanded the ADT also praised Shinn’s work
“Captain Shinn told the ADT story superbly,” said Brig Gen Craig Bargfrede, who now is the assistant adjutant general for the Minnesota National Guard “I’m not surprised to hear he won this award”
Shinn reacted to news of his Emmy by lauding the Soldiers and Airmen of the Iowa National Guard with whom he served in Afghanistan
“‘Iowa Soldiers’ was about the men and women of the ADT,” Shinn said “They risked their lives every day to improve conditions for ordinary Afghans, and the real honor was working with them”
Shinn is a student squadron commander at OTS on Maxwell In addition to leading young men and women through their training to earn a commission, he actively participates in the professional development of his fellow staff and faculty at the Air University
According to the US Army website, the Army National Guard has employed the Agribusiness Development Team concept successfully in Central America for approximately 20 years The National Guard Bureau completed significant planning to transfer this successful model to Afghanistan
Composed of citizen-soldiers with farming and agribusiness expertise, team members put themselves in harm’s way to offer practical training and advice to Afghan universities, provincial ministries and local farmers Through daily community engagement, the teams helped improve Afghan farming practices, leading to more sustainable food production
Col Edward Vaughan
Air University Air National Guard Advisor
Maxwell Gunter Dispatch
Woman's Veterans Initiative Shows Major Muscle with Habitat for Humanity Build
Posted: 2015-11-25 09:37 AM
ST. PAUL, Minn. - The Minnesota Women Veterans Initiative (WVI), a group orientated toward networking Minnesota women military members and veterans brought 16 service(wo)men from all services, ages and backgrounds together, November 12, to assist in a Habitat for Humanity build. Eleven of the 16 women are current or former Minnesota National Guardsmen.
"We started celebrating Veterans Day this way in 2008 with Habitat for Humanity and enjoy coming back each year to build," said Trista Matascastillo, program officer for Veterans Voices and chairman for the WVI. "We learn new skills, build our own confidence and make new friends. There are 27,000-plus women vets in Minnesota and so often we hear that women veterans feel isolated and alone and having events like this is just another way to bring us out and together."
The group started in the morning with a brief on the tasks for the day and quickly got to work, going above and beyond by organizing the work-site and making sure there was a high attention to detail.
Empowering Girls and Influencing the Next Generation
Posted: 2015-11-17 10:51 AM
ST. PAUL, Minn. - The Minnesota Air National Guard and the Soroptimist International of the Twin Cities partnered together to present the documentary film 'Girl Rising' at the 133rd Airlift Wing on Saturday, Nov 7 2015.
The event featured a C-130 tour for any of the attendees, which included girls as young as nine. Following the tour, the documentary film 'Girl Rising' was featured and ended with a panel discussion. Topics included overcoming obstacles, mentors and people who have inspired them along the way.
"I think events like this are essential in opening our doors to the community and raising awareness about important issues not only local, but around the world - often these are places many of our wing members have deployed to," said Master Sgt. Theresa Mensinger, Diversity and Inclusion Senior Non-commissioned officer.
Duluth's 148th Fighter Wing has new leader
Posted: 2015-11-16 07:47 AM
DULUTH, Minn. - With the handing-off of the 148th Fighter Wing's flag on Saturday, Col. Jon Safstrom has become the new wing commander.
The Duluth native assumed the leadership role from Col. Frank Stokes, who is leaving Duluth after leading the 148th for more than six years to become chief of current operations at the National Guard Bureau in Arlington, Va.
During Saturday's Change of Command Ceremony at the Minnesota Air National Guard base in Duluth, Stokes passed the flag of the 148th "Bulldogs" to Brig. Gen. David Hamlar, who then passed the flag to Safstrom, symbolizing the accepting of the command.
133AW and Best Buy Corporate join together to support Operation Gratitude
Posted: 2015-11-12 12:51 PM
BLOOMINGTON, Minn. - Airmen from the 133rd Airlift Wing and employees from Best Buy Corporate joined forces to support Operation Gratitude at the Best Buy corporate headquarters in Bloomington, Minn., Friday, Nov. 6, 2015.
Operation Gratitude is a 501(c)(3) non-profit, volunteer-based corporation, funded entirely by private donations. Every year, Operation Gratitude sends more than 150,000 individually-addressed care packages to Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Marines deployed overseas.
On Friday, more than 30 members from the 133rd Airlift Wing worked side-by-side with employees of Best Buy Corporate to pack bags filled with snacks, small electronics and other items to be shipped to deployed military members overseas. The efforts paid off and the group packed nearly 1,800 bags in under an hour.