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Minnesota National Guard
Minnesota recruiters exceed recruiting goals

Minnesota National Guard ROSEMOUNT, Minn- For the Minnesota National Guard Recruiting and Retention Battalion, 127% isn't just a number, it's about people - Minnesota Army National Guard Soldiers, recruits, to be specific

Fiscal year 2013 was a very good year for the recruiting battalion Nearly 1,600 Soldiers enlisted into the Minnesota Army National Guard, 26 percent over the projected goal According to Command Sgt Maj David Eustice, recruiting battalion noncommissioned officer-in-charge, "Involvement in the community was key to making Minnesota top in the nation for recruiting Not only did we make the top percentile, we did it in the shortest period of time"

After nine years in the recruiting command, Eustice has seen his share of recruiters The qualities that come to mind when he thinks of a good recruiter are initiative, an outgoing personality, articulate, caring about the Guard, a good problem solver and the ability to listen He says this year's top recruiters have all those qualities and more

Sgt 1st Class Christopher Popelka out of Monticello, Minn, reached his goal of 22 recruits by March 20 As the senior member of his recruiting team, he credits his team members, his mentors and the support of his wife with helping him attain his goal His philosophies are to get involved in the community, so people can get to know the person behind the uniform and to be professional at all times Helping the soldier into a positive future is his motto

For two years in a row, Staff Sgt Michael Beelow out of Owatonna, Minn, has stood out as a top recruiter This year, he reached his mission of 25 recruits by March 28 His secrets of success? He tries to match the goals of the recruit for the long term, listen and let the recruit know that there is some give and take involved with reaching their goals and to seek continuous improvement He says that being successful as a recruiter is very similar to owning your own business, it takes a lot of initiative and perseverance

For ten years the Minnesota National Guard Recruiting and Retention Battalion has met their goal of 100 percent or more Team training and high standards helped the organization contribute to creating the optimal force structure to ensure the future success of the Minnesota National Guard

September 27, 2013
by Russ Gamache
Minnesota National Guard Public Affairs



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Operation Future Warrior, rain or shine

Posted: 2017-05-24  01:12 PM
Operation Future Warrior More than 900 recruits from the Minnesota National Guard came to Camp Ripley Friday through Sunday for Operation Future Warrior.

Young men and women who volunteered to join the Minnesota Army National Guard got to experience a small taste of basic training and military training during the three-day event.

"The intent of Operation Future Warrior is removing the mystery of the training recruits will experience when attending Basic Combat and Advance Individualized Training," said Lt. Col. Eduardo Suarez, recruiting and retention battalion commander.



St. Paul-based Combat Aviation Brigade welcomes new senior enlisted leader

Posted: 2017-05-23  08:03 AM
Hellkamp ARDEN HILLS, Minn. - The Minnesota National Guard's 34th Combat Aviation Brigade welcomed a new senior enlisted leader during a change of responsibility ceremony, May 21, 2017, at the Arden Hills Army Training Site.

Command Sgt. Maj. Mitchell Hellkamp assumed duties as the unit's senior noncommissioned officer (NCO) from Command Sgt. Maj. Stephen Cunnien, who served in the position for the past two years and will be retiring from the military later this year.

"Command Sgt. Maj. Cunnien is one of the finest leaders that I have worked with in my career," said Col. Shawn Manke, commander of the 34th CAB. "He sets the example for all noncommissioned officers and Soldiers to emulate. He is a true professional, as a visible leader and teacher for the Soldiers of the combat aviation brigade. We're grateful for his many years of service, and we wish him well as he closes out his military career and enters the next chapter in his life."



Families recognized for sacrifices during Guard deployment

Posted: 2017-05-22  10:57 AM
Welcome Home ST. CLOUD, Minn. - Soldiers of B Co., 2-211th General Support Aviation Battalion were welcomed home May 20, 2017, at the River's Edge Convention Center in St. Cloud, Minnesota. During the ceremony, families were recognized for their sacrifices during the year-long deployment.

"I often tell Soldiers and truly believe that as hard as our jobs are at times, our families have the harder job at home," said Lt. Col. Kevin O'Brien, commander of the 2-147 Assault Helicopter Battalion. "Because Army family members have a unique burden that many of their friends and families cannot understand, they form family readiness groups, or FRGs, to share information and provide support to one another."

The company's FRG leader, Rhiannon Knutson, wife of Chief Warrant Officer 2 Tom Knutson, was in constant contact with the unit's families and went above and beyond what is normally expected of FRG leaders, said the unit's readiness non-commissioned officer, Sgt. 1st Class Mark Wood.



Camp Ripley's Training Support Unit keeps the base running

Posted: 2017-05-16  12:41 PM
Camp Ripley CAMP RIPLEY, Minn. - The Camp Ripley Training Support Unit is designated to the care, upkeep and assistance to the installation and those utilizing the facility.

"The Training Support Unit's (TSU) primary focus is to support unit training requirements and ensure smooth operations here on Camp Ripley and the Arden Hills Army Training Site in the metro," said Sgt. 1st Class Terry Clabo, Training Support Unit Readiness NCO.

Camp Ripley features numerous ranges and state-of-the-art training facilities to support military, law enforcement, first responder and inter-agency partner training requirements. The installation is structured to have a full complement of automated small arms and large caliber weapon ranges as well as several specialized training facilities.



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