/*********************************************** * Chrome CSS Drop Down Menu- (c) Dynamic Drive DHTML code library (www.dynamicdrive.com) * This notice MUST stay intact for legal use * Visit Dynamic Drive at http://www.dynamicdrive.com/ for full source code ***********************************************/
History
Minnesota National Guard
Minnesota National Guard promotes its first female general

BG Sandra Best MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. - Minnesota achieved another historical milestone as Brig. Gen. Sandra L. Best was promoted during a ceremony Thursday, becoming the first female general in the history of the Minnesota National Guard.

The official pinning ceremony took place February 25, 2016, at The Woman's Club of Minneapolis, where Best was joined by her family, friends, colleagues and many Airmen and Soldiers from the Minnesota National Guard. Several distinguished guests and elected officials, to include Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton, Lt. Governor Tina Smith, and Maj. Gen. Richard. C. Nash, Minnesota National Guard Adjutant General, were also in attendance.

Maj. Gen. Richard. C. Nash and Gov. Mark Dayton pinned the general officer rank on Brig. Gen. Best, and the governor administered the oath of office. The rest of the formal ceremony concluded with the traditional presentation of the general officer's flag, belt and pistol, and remarks from state leadership.

"General Best has shown me and the other senior military people in Minnesota, in our state, and our federal government, that she is passionate, inspiring, intelligent, decisive, persuasive and always optimistic, which are all attributes of a visionary leader," said Nash.

Throughout her 32-year career in the military, Best has served the country and state of Minnesota in a variety of leadership roles. She joined the Minnesota Air National Guard's 133rd Airlift Wing in 1984 as a personnel specialist, and after progressing through the enlisted ranks to technical sergeant, she became a commissioned officer in 1991 through the Academy of Military Science at McGhee Tyson Air National Guard Base in Tennessee.

Best fondly reflected on her military journey through the years, sharing her memories from her very first drill weekend with the 133rd Airlift Wing, to her two recent command positions. "I treasure my memories of my first command, 133rd Logistic Readiness Squadron, which was blessed with so many dedicated and just plain awesome Airmen culminating in recognition of the best logistics support squadron in the Air National Guard!"

In addition to her leadership, scholastic and post-graduate achievements, Best attributed her greatest accomplishment as being a voice for Airmen and working with the great men and women of the Minnesota National Guard to achieve the mission and priorities.

"The Guard has always and continues to be blessed with inspirational, courageous and intelligent leaders. The Army and Air have always and continue to be populated by selfless, determined, heroic Airmen and Soldiers who understand the vital role they play in mission accomplishment, are prepared to make the sacrifices necessary to achieve the mission and remain continually alert and ready for the call to arms. Truly the Guard's most valuable assets are its members."

Though Best is a trailblazer as the first female general officer in the state of Minnesota, she likely won't be the last, as one of the priorities of the Minnesota National Guard is diversity of the force. According to Nash, the Minnesota National Guard has increased the number of women serving in ranks from 16.2% to 18% since 2011, and that number continues to grow.

"This increase reflects the importance of promoting great, talented and qualified female candidates such as General Best. They all nurture personal and professional development, and they increase resiliency and promote retention, inclusion and diversity," said Nash. "The face of Minnesota's workers is changing, and Minnesota needs to create conditions where everyone has the opportunities and resources to shine. Governor, today General Best is our shining example of your vision."

Dayton praised the Minnesota National Guard for its commitment to excellence and commitment to talent. "General, you really are the best. You worked your way all the way up from the very beginning, 32 years, through your own excellence and through your own hard work."

Best will serve as the Chief of Staff of the Minnesota Air National Guard, responsible for command supervision, oversight and leadership of the 133rd Airlift Wing and 148th Fighter Wing, for all matters pertaining to manning, operations, readiness, training, and equipping these units.

"I fully recognize that as a flag officer I have been entrusted with much. I am honored and accept it as my charge to boldly, judiciously and generously execute my responsibilities in the best interest of the Minnesota National Guard, Minnesota and our Nation," said Best.

February 26, 2016
by Maj. Georgette Danczyk
133rd Airlift Wing Public Affairs



Download best photos

Download all photos




Articles archive

In The News archive

Media Advisory archive

Latest News

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.



Article archive
 
top