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Minnesota National Guard
Minnesota National Guard Gets Lean on Process Improvement

Minnesota National Guard ST PAUL, Minn- The end of the war in Iraq and the budget constraints of the military have begun a time of trimming the fat, getting lean and maximizing more with less The Minnesota National Guard has been training Soldiers and Airmen in process improvement for years using Certified Process Improvement (CPI) courses as a way of creating the mindset of continuous improvement In January, eight more members of the Minnesota National Guard attended a Certified Process Improvement course at the 133rd Airlift Wing, Fort Snelling

"The training prepares the students to solve complex problems," said Reed Mick, Lean Six Development Director, Minnesota National Guard "This problem solving allows the organization to conserve resources, achieve strategy, and provide improved services to leaders and Soldiers"

According to Army G1, Lean Six Sigma is a process improvement methodology that focuses on eliminating waste and reducing variation 'Lean' refers to removing non-value added steps, or cutting out steps that provide no benefit The "Six Sigma" portion is statistically-based and represents an occurrence rate of only 34 defects per million opportunities When you combine the two, the result is a process that saves time and money and improves customer satisfaction It is appropriate to apply the principles of LSS when working with a repeatable process

Within the LSS world, there are varying levels of certification Similar to martial arts, LSS uses the belt system to distinguish between different levels of knowledge The highest-ranking belt is a Master Black Belt, while the lowest ranking belt is a White Belt

Sgt Stephanie Malm, Administrative Non-Commissioned Officer, 34th Infantry Division, attended the Intro to Certified Process Improvement course at the 133rd in November and was highly impressed with what she took away from the training

"CPI, to me, isn't just a onetime project where you collaborate with co-workers and spend hours upon hours trying to fix massive issues," said Malm "CPI is a way of thinking and can, and should, be implemented with day-to-day processes to - this is my favorite - do less with less!"

CPI/LSS can be used in all processes of the military from deployments to the motor pool The Minnesota National Guard and the military overall is using CPI/LSS training to transform its business processes to become more streamlined, agile and efficient For this to be the most effective, it needs to gain commitment and dedication from each and every member across the organization

"This really is about developing a culture of continuous improvement throughout the organization," said Mick "The training then, provides the adequate skills to do that"

"While the fiscal challenges facing the Department of Defense are great, I am convinced that the Minnesota National Guard can provide maximum effects while minimizing costs," said Maj. Gen. Richard C Nash, Minnesota National Guard Adjutant General

January 16, 2014
by Sgt John Angelo
Minnesota National Guard Public Affairs



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Governor Mark Dayton installs new Minnesota National Guard Adjutant General

Posted: 2017-11-04  04:16 PM
TAG installation ST. PAUL, Minn. - Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton administered the oath of office to Maj. Gen. Jon A. Jensen, installing him as the Minnesota National Guard's 31st Adjutant General during a ceremony in St. Paul, November 4, 2017.

"General Jensen has been a tremendous leader of the Minnesota National Guard throughout his years of dedicated service," said Governor Dayton. "He has served in two top leadership positions, as the Commanding General of the 34th Red Bull Infantry Division, and also as the Chief of Staff at the Guard's Joint Force Headquarters. I am confident that he will continue to provide the same outstanding leadership as his predecessor, General Rick Nash."

Jensen most recently served as the Commanding General of the 34th Red Bull Infantry Division. He previously held positions as Deputy Commanding General, United States Army Africa and Southern European Task Force, Minnesota National Guard Director of the Joint Staff and Minnesota National Guard Assistant Adjutant General - Army.



Guard Heritage Suffers with Loss of Artillery Unit

Posted: 2017-10-04  11:22 AM
ETAB ANOKA, Minn. - The Minnesota National Guard lost one of its most historically significant units when the 151st Artillery's E Battery, (Target Acquisition) cased its colors in a ceremony at the Anoka High School Aug. 19, 2017.

The Target Acquisition Battery (ETAB), 151st Field Artillery is one of the oldest and most decorated units in the Minnesota National Guard and the 34th Infantry Division. "Both Minnesota and the Division lose the proud lineage that goes back to Civil War days, through WW1 and WW2, and had a significant amount of battle streamers," said 151st Field Artillery Battalion Commander, Lt. Col. Patrick Cornwell.

The 151st Field Artillery draws its lineage from the 1st Regiment, Minnesota Heavy Artillery of 1864 which fought two major campaigns in Tennessee during the Civil War.



In one month: Minnesota Guardsmen support Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria

Posted: 2017-09-29  02:25 PM
Minnesota National Guard ST. PAUL, Minn. - In the span of a few weeks, three major hurricanes hit different parts of the southern United States, causing widespread damage and destruction and requiring the response of agencies around the country. The Minnesota National Guard is one of the many organizations that have responded, sending Soldiers and Airmen to Texas, Florida, the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico.

"This is the most gratifying deployment of my career," said Capt. Jeremy Maxey with the 133rd Airlift Wing who was called back from his vacation early to go to the Virgin Islands. "It means a lot to be able to actually directly help people. It's why I serve. Throughout my career I've deployed numerous times, but this is the one where you actually see the people you serve."

The start of the month brought the first request for assistance. On Sept. 1, two CH-47 Chinook helicopters and 11 personnel from the St. Cloud-based B Company, 2nd General Support Aviation Battalion, 211th Aviation Regiment left for Texas following Hurricane Harvey to transport personnel and equipment in support of response efforts.



Finding fellowship in the sacred mission

Posted: 2017-09-26  12:02 PM
Minnesota National Guard CAMP RIPLEY, Minn. - One of the most difficult, most sacred, honorable duties in the military is one that people don't often think about. It takes compassion, empathy, care, and requires great resilience. It is one that when called upon to train for, they hope to rarely perform because it means another Soldier has been lost. It is the duty of casualty notification officer and casualty assistance officer.

About 45 Minnesota Army National Guard Soldiers came to Camp Ripley, Minnesota, on September 21-22, 2017, for a Reset Seminar to find fellowship in one specific thing they have in common: delivering the worst news in the Army.

When a Soldier dies at home or overseas, CNOs and CAOs must notify and help families through the process, including paperwork, benefits, and funeral arrangements.



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