CAMP RIPLEY, Minn. - Col. Johanna P. Clyborne assumed command of the Roseville-based 347th Regional Support Group from Col. Steve S. Hanson during a ceremony at Camp Ripley, September 7, 2013.
Hanson, who works full-time as a financial analyst at Camp Ripley, took command of the 347th in 2011.
"In the past two years, the 347th RSG has improved personnel readiness across all elements," said Maj. Gen. David Elicerio, commander of the 34th Infantry Division. "[Hanson] oversaw the mobilization, deployment and redeployment of multiple units. All served honorably; bringing home accolades from the units they served with and supported."
During the ceremony, Hanson took time to recognize the Soldiers of the 347th RSG for their contributions during his time in command.
"I'm pleased to acknowledge the Soldiers, NCOs and officers in the RSG for all the hard work you have done," said Hanson. "Your readiness ratings have never been higher."
Elicerio offered high praise of Hanson's performance over the past three years and observed that one's time in command, while rewarding, can also be fleeting.
"In my 33 years of service in this Army, I have never met a more tenacious, dogged individual than Steve Hanson," said Elicerio. "He understands the importance of standards; he realizes that results matter and that despite obstacles, his units must perform."
Clyborne, a Minnetonka native and founding partner at the law firm of Brekke, Clyborne and Ribich, LLC, joined the National Guard in 1989 and served in several positions of leadership throughout her 23-year career.
"We are given rank to serve, not to be served," said Clyborne. "I fully recognize that I have been given and entrusted with America's most prized asset: her sons and daughters. I promise that I will be a good steward of our assets and our resources. We will not break America's trust in us."
"You are being provided a unique opportunity at a very challenging time in our force's history," said Elicerio. "You are required to be flexible, creative, focused, determined, intelligent and compassionate at the right times and in the right manner. I can think of no one better to accept this challenge at this time."
Clyborne accepted the challenge and made a promise to her Soldiers about what to expect in the months ahead.
"We will be flexible, we will be creative, we will work hard, we will train hard, we will continue to grow and we will develop together," said Clyborne. "And we are going to have fun doing it. So buckle up, 'cause it's going to be wild ride the next three years."
Posted: 2015-03-25 08:45 AM CAMP RIPLEY, Minn. - "A Gold Star family member is a person who has lost a loved one who was serving our nation in the armed forces regardless of the circumstances of the death," said Survivor Outreach Services provider Amy Garber.
Bill Smith, father of Sgt. 1st Class Paul Smith, and Richard Cauley, father of Spc. George Cauley, two Gold Star dads, recently spoke about their sons and what it means to be a Gold Star father.
"Everyone's greatest fear is the thought they'll say something awkward [to a Gold Star family member]. We want to talk about our loved ones. The greatest sadness would be that no one would remember," said Bill Smith.
Posted: 2015-03-22 01:39 PM BLOOMINGTON, Minn. - Soldiers of Headquarters, Headquarters Company of the 334th Brigade Engineer Battalion took time away from training to celebrate Women's History Month with a look at the history of women in the Minnesota National Guard from someone who lived it.
Invited to speak at the event was Geraldine Longfellow. In 2008, Longfellow retired from the Minnesota Army National Guard at the rank of lieutenant colonel. She has since been brevetted to the rank of colonel.
Posted: 2015-03-18 03:40 PM CAMP RIPLEY, Minn. - For many Service members of the Minnesota National Guard, dedication to the community is as high of a priority as any other mission.
"We feel it is our duty, in our own communities, to ensure that our friends and neighbors are taken care of," said Chief Warrant Officer 2 Ryan Ross.
Ross, who has been an active member of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Minnesota for over three years, as well as a member of the Minnesota National Guard, was recently recognized by the agency as "Big Brother of the Year" for the State of Minnesota.
Posted: 2015-03-17 01:26 PM
CAMP BUEHRING, Kuwait - Soldiers join the National Guard for many different reasons. Some are seeking the adventure and experience, some are looking for career opportunities and school benefits, and some soldiers simply want to serve their country.
At some point in a soldier's enlistment, he or she will be asked, are you going to re-enlist? Enlistment contracts for the National Guard often are an eight-year obligation with four or six years of active drilling service. Some soldiers leave the Army, and others decide to take the opportunities they've been offered and make a career.
Sgt. Brittany Grams, Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 34th Combat Aviation Brigade medical noncommissioned officer, and Spc. Freddie Williams IV, HHC 34th CAB human resource specialist, are making careers, and the transition from enlisted soldier to officer. Article archive