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Minnesota National Guard
Minnesota National Guard holds first Pride month celebration

Minnesota National Guard ST PAUL, Minn- The Minnesota National Guard celebrated LGBT Pride Month with a presentation discussing diversity and equality in the current military climate, June 8, 2014 The discussion was led by Rebecca Waggoner, Anti-Violence Program Director for OutFront Minnesota Topics included LGBT language, the current climate for LGBT service members and the next steps moving forward

OutFront Minnesota's mission is to create a state where lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people are free to be who they are, love who they love, and live without fear of violence, harassment or discrimination

"This isn't a morality issue This is a making a better military issue" said Waggoner With the repeal of the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy on January 28, 2011, Service members were no longer subjected to administrative separation based solely on their sexual orientation Also, since the repeal, military members and retirees with same-sex partners are now qualified for housing, medical and dental benefits

Col John Kolb, Minnesota National Guard Chief of Staff, expressed the importance of discussing diversity and inclusion in today's military

"This is a really important day and we have an opportunity now to look at inclusion," Kolb said "Twenty-seven years ago, I never imagined that I would have a commander, at the Adjutant General level, saying that this is a definite priority across the state"

Same-sex marriage has only been legalized in Minnesota since August 1, 2013 All of the policy change surrounding Service member's sexual orientation has happened in less than three years This rapid shift in military climate does require educating military members with events like today's celebration of LGBT Pride Month "I know many gay and lesbian Soldiers that I've served with over parts of my career," stated Kolb "They were tremendous Soldiers, they served proudly, but they were stifled by a policy that was unfair to their individuality"

In the end, a Service member is a Service member, regardless of race, ethnicity, gender or sexual orientation

"We are committed to fostering an environment that truly represents the demographics of the communities in which we serve," said Maj. Gen. Richard C Nash, Minnesota National Guard Adjutant General "We must reflect those whom we lead, serve and protect"

June 9, 2014
by Sgt Dajon Ferrell
Minnesota National Guard Public Affairs



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Minnesota Guardsmen learn survival skills, train with Norwegian counterparts

Posted: 2018-07-03  01:36 PM
NOREX 45 Over the course of 10 days, 100 Soldiers and Airmen from the Minnesota National Guard who traveled to Norway June 17-26, 2018, for the 45th Norwegian Reciprocal Troop Exchange learned valuable survival skills and shared their knowledge with members of the Norwegian Home Guard. This year's exchange was the second to take place during the summer months in the history of the longest-running military partnership between two nations.

"It was a great experience for both the Minnesota National Guard and the Norwegian Home Guard," said Capt. 'Kiwi' HorgA�ien, the senior Norwegian instructor. "A cultural exchange, a social exchange and military exchange all packed into one."

The 45th exchange got off to a late start, with flight delays causing the trip to be shortened from its normal length of two weeks. The delay meant that the Minnesota Guardsmen jumped right into training, heading out to the field after just a few hours of sleep.



133rd Airlift Wing Emphasizes Combat Readiness Training

Posted: 2018-06-29  10:48 AM
Alpena ALPENA, Michigan - Approximately 300 U.S. Air Force Airmen from the 133rd Airlift Wing participated in a readiness exercise at the Alpena Combat Readiness Training Center, Alpena, Mich.

The exercise, tagged as Iron Ore, was designed test the Airmen abilities to set up operations at an unfamiliar location and receive in depth training on Ability-To-Survive and Operate (ATSO) principles while supporting airlift and aeromedical flight operations.

To ensure mission success and readiness, Airmen had to complete training at home station prior to leaving for Alpena. Some of this training included weapons qualification, gas mask fit testing, Mission Oriented Protective Posture (MOPP) familiarization, self-aid and buddy care and career field training.



Red Bulls Kickoff Division Warfighter

Posted: 2018-06-13  01:38 PM
DIV WFX CAMP ATTERBURY, Ind. - "A Warfighter is an exercise that allows the Division to evaluate their ability to maneuver assets in a battle," said Master Sgt. Greg Weaver, the Operations Non-Commissioned Officer in Charge for the Division Headquarters and Headquarters Battalion. "It is designed to focus on particular areas and specific objectives to be evaluated or tested."

The Division has geared its' planning and training efforts in preparation for Warfighter since July 2017. Coordinating transportation for Soldiers and equipment was often on the mind of Maj. David Johansson, the logistics officer for the 34th ID. With the coordination of Johansson and his team, troops and equipment all converged on Camp Atterbury, enlisting the help of 89 railcars, 280 tractor-trailers, and nearly 50 buses for the movement.

"I like to say my job is to 'quiet the noise'". Johansson continued, "The noise being a real life logistical problem that could impede the exercise."



Minnesota-based aviation unit takes part in Warfighter Exercise

Posted: 2018-06-08  11:59 AM
34ECAB WFX CAMP ATTERBURY, Ind. - More than 150 Soldiers of the Minnesota National Guard's 34th Expeditionary Combat Aviation Brigade are here participating in a multi-echelon training event, Warfighter Exercise 18-5, May 30 to June 15.

The exercise, which is part live and part virtual, is testing the St. Paul, Minnesota-based aviation unit's ability to conduct operations and mission command in a high-intensity, complex operating environment. Soldiers are being challenged to take decisive action as they focus on air-ground operations -- or synchronizing and integrating aviation operations into the scheme of maneuver planned and conducted by forces on the ground.

In this case, the units on the ground are being commanded by the Rosemount, Minnesota-based 34th Red Bull Infantry Division, which is also participating in the exercise.



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