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Minnesota National Guard
Minnesota National Guard to receive Cyber Protection Team

Cyber Protection Teams ST. PAUL, Minn. - The Minnesota National Guard will receive one of 13 additional cyber units by the end of fiscal year 2019, the National Guard announced in early December. The new Cyber Protection Team will bring an additional 39 Soldiers to the state who will be dedicated to training for cyber operations.

Minnesota was selected among all states that submitted a cyber protection stationing plan, explaining why the state thought it could support, recruit and retain cyber force structure. In recent years the Minnesota National Guard has exceeded readiness standards while continuing to support both state and federal missions.

"The advantages really came down to the remarkable history the Minnesota National Guard has in readiness and mission accomplishment," said Col. Stefanie Horvath, the Minnesota National Guard Chief Information Officer. "Also, when you look at the state of Minnesota as a whole, we have an amazing cyber ecosystem."

That ecosystem includes six educational institutions that are accredited as Centers of Academic Excellence Institutions by the National Security Agency and the Central Security Service as well as high rankings on the State Technology and Science Index in human capital investment and technology and science workforce. Coupled with the high density of Fortune 500 companies that call Minnesota home, Minnesota provides a large and talented pool to draw from to recruit a high-tech workforce.

The Minnesota National Guard maintains close relationships with the academic and industrial sector in Minnesota, as well as with local government. Horvath co-chairs Minnesota's Information Security Risk Management Governance Committee and the Minnesota National Guard collaborates with the state's annual Cyber Security Summit. The Minnesota National Guard also benefits from the support of Governor Mark Dayton and the Minnesota Congressional delegates who helped to advocate for additional cyber assets in the state.

"All of our operations in Minnesota are by with and through state agencies or with our state partners," Horvath said.

The Cyber Protection Team will be comprised of 39 Soldiers with a large number of the positions being warrant officer and enlisted Soldiers. Cyber Soldiers require more training than many conventional military occupational specialties and that additional training will provide the Soldiers with certifications in the Information Technology field that will also translate to the civilian sector.

"I think this presents more opportunities and greater career progression for not only signal and military intelligence, but all of the National Guard Soldiers who have either experience or education in information technology," Horvath said.

The Cyber Protection Team will focus on protecting the Department of Defense information network. The Soldiers will also be able to coordinate, train, advise and assist state partners in order to share technical information for securing local networks.

It's important to note that the Cyber Protection Team, and the Minnesota National Guard as a whole, will not conduct offensive network operations or monitor any network that is not part of the Department of Defense.

"The threat is more sophisticated and the call to serve in the cyber domain in certainly increasing," said Horvath.

December 18, 2015
by Master Sgt. Blair Heusdens
Minnesota National Guard Public Affairs



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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.

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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.

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