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Minnesota National Guard
Minnesota National Guard Joint Communications Platform supports exercise

Joint Communications Platform DULUTH, Minn- The 148th Fighter Wing's Joint Communications Platform (JCP) was on-scene at the Duluth Entertainment Convention Center (DECC), Duluth, Minn Aug 25 2015 to support the Red Cross as part of Vigilant Guard 2015, a National Guard Bureau-US Northern Command initiative that is intended to foster and enhance cooperation between National Guard and state interagency partners

"We're here to support and demonstrate what our capabilities are It [the JCP] provides data and radio, telephone communications, and we also have army and civilian internet," said Master Sgt Tom Walden, 148th Fighter Wing information technology specialist "We're demonstrating it to the people that are coming down here to check out the Red Cross' exercise, so they know that the capabilities are there and they can ask for our support if they need it"

One of Red Cross' objectives for Vigilant Guard is to simulate a mass sheltering scenario within the DECC facility -- a situation they have trained for in the past, and one a JCP could provide communications support for as needed

"We've opened shelters before, and partner-shelters are what we're really working on," said Tony Guerra, Red Cross Disaster Program manager "We love having the partners in the shelters because they know the community much better than the Red Cross folks -- that's one of the benefits Today we have a great opportunity to make some mistakes and learn from them -- we'd rather do it here than during an actual disaster"

One of three JCP's in the state of Minnesota, the 148th's vehicle is equipped with generators to provide back-up electrical power and the ability to conference and connect or bridge multiple telephone and radio systems

The JCP is among the most valuable assets the Minnesota National Guard can bring to a domestic emergency It provides the ability to connect the communication platforms of the wide variety of agencies that respond, helping to ensure a coordinated and efficient response among all agencies

Initially brought into service in 2006, the JCP's have provided critical back-up to efforts such as flood relief in the southeast part of the state, remote north woods connectivity for annual sled dog races, fighting fires in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area and in support of the Republican National Convention in St Paul September 2008

Story by Tech Sgt Scott Herrington
Aug 25, 2015



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Month of the Military Child recognizes contributions of military kids

Posted: 2018-04-07  01:54 PM
Minnesota National Guard FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 7, 2018

ST. PAUL, Minn.- The month of April is designated as the Month of the Military Child to recognize the contributions and sacrifices military children make so their family members can serve. An estimated 15,000 children in Minnesota have been affected by the deployment of a parent.

"Military children bear a lot while their family members serve," said Maj. Gen. Jon Jensen, Adjutant General of the Minnesota National Guard. "It is up to us to support these resilient kids and help to lessen their burden."

An event to honor military kids in Minnesota will take place April 13, 2018, at the Mall of America rotunda from 2:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. Activities will include appearances by the Teddy Bear Band and meet and greets with Nickelodeon characters.



Forging a path to career success

Posted: 2018-03-16  08:45 AM
Col. Angela Steward-Randle ST. PAUL, Minn. - Col. Angela Steward-Randle grew up in a military family - her father served in the Army on active duty - but it was a chance encounter with a friend at college that led her to want to make the military a career.

"My story is no different than many others," Steward-Randle, the Director of Human Resources, Manpower and Personnel for the Minnesota National Guard said. "I was in college and looking for financial resources to help pay for it."

Her college friend suggested they attend a summer training with the Reserve Officer Training Corps that had no obligation and could earn them some money. The friend never ended up going, but Steward-Randle did. After earning recognition as the top honor graduate and receiving an offer of a scholarship, she was hooked.



Minnesota Guardsman Receives Award for Combating Drugs in his Community

Posted: 2018-03-09  03:13 PM
Counterdrug WOODBURY, Minn. - Staff Sgt. Benjamin Kroll, an analyst with the Minnesota National Guard's Counterdrug Task Force who is assigned to work with the Hennepin County Sherriff's Office was recognized for his achievements as the Analyst of the Year during the 2018 Minnesota Association of Crime and Intelligence Analysts Training Symposium in Woodbury, Minnesota, March 7, 2018.

Through a partnership with Minnesota law enforcement agencies throughout the state, the Minnesota National Guard Counterdrug Task Force (MNCDTF) supports the anti-drug initiatives to counter all primary drug threats and vulnerabilities through the effective application of available assets, said Maj. Jon Dotterer, Counterdrug Coordinator for the State of Minnesota. The goal for the program is to support federal, state, tribal, and local agencies in the detection, disruption, interdiction, and curtailment of illicit drugs.

Kroll is one of sixteen service members on the Counterdrug Task Force that provides this force-multiplying service to our communities against illicit drug-use. With the information that law enforcement provide through their patrols and daily operations, Kroll and his colleagues across the state assist by putting together a figurative picture with all of the gathered information which aids in identifying how to move forward with legal action to deter or prevent the sale or use of illegal narcotic drugs.



Women Opened Doors in Minnesota National Guard

Posted: 2018-03-08  09:05 AM
Minnesota National Guard ST. PAUL, Minn. - "The battlefront is no place for women to be," said Command Sgt. Maj. Earl Kurtzweg, 125th Field Artillery, in an article published in 1976. "There are certain jobs girls say they can do, but they just can't do ... the battlefront is no place for women to be. Other countries in the world use women in combat, but the U.S. has not come around to that way of thinking." Kathy Berg, a New Ulm reporter summarized at the time. "So women in the New Ulm unit take care of personnel files and pay records and leave the fighting to the men."

The Minnesota National Guard has "come around to that way of thinking" since those early days of gender integration. In the last 44 years women have made momentous strides toward inclusion and acceptance. Their accomplishments are testimony to their fortitude and the progressive development of the Minnesota National Guard.

When an accomplished female Soldier is credited with breaking barriers she will often pass that honor to the women that preceded her. Brig. Gen. Johanna Clyborne is such a leader. She acknowledges that she is one of the first females in the Minnesota National Guard who has held key leadership roles, however she sees it differently. "I feel responsible for all women in uniform," said Clyborne. "Women before me opened the door, now I've cleared the room. It's up to the women behind me to hold the room."



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