/*********************************************** * 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's recruiting command finds success in diversity, inclusion

Recruiting Battalion MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. - Minnesota is the 21st largest state in population, but the state has the 6th largest National Guard organization in the country. With more than 13,000 Soldiers and Airmen in communities throughout the state, recruiting and retaining the best individuals is important to ensuring the Minnesota National Guard remains always ready to answer the call to the state and nation.

"Each year we provide the opportunity for approximately 1,700 people to join the Minnesota Army National Guard and serve their great state and country," said Lt. Col. Michael Pazdernik, commander of the Minnesota National Guard's Recruiting and Retention Battalion.

This year, as in past years, Minnesota Army National Guard recruiters have set individual and team goals for the number of new Soldiers to bring into the organization. These goals help keep the organization on track to maintaining the correct balance of personnel as normal attrition takes place through retirements and separations.

"We are on track and the way we continue to have our success is we get out and get in front of as many people as we can, educate them on the opportunities that we have here in Minnesota in the national guard and ask them to join," said Pazdernik.

With 83 recruiters in 58 communities around the state, the Minnesota National Guard can reach out to under-served communities in both the metro and rural areas.

"Our recruiters are assigned to every zip code in the state," said Maj. Ryan Kelly, deputy commander of the Recruiting and Retention Battalion. "We get in front of those young Minnesotans regardless of their economic or ethnic background and expose them to the opportunities that service in the National Guard brings."

The benefits of military service can have a significant impact on those who might not otherwise have the means or opportunities to pursue their goals in life.

"For us the focus is not on the diversity, it's on inclusion," said Pazdernik. "It's on getting out there and finding anyone who is eligible, who has a desire to serve, and then giving them that chance. And then you watch people grow; you watch people excel; you watch what happens when you provide them resources and tools that maybe they didn't have access to before."

In recent months, all positions in the Minnesota National Guard have been opened to women. Female recruiters are now more important than ever in reaching out to women who are interested in filling positions that might not have been available to them in the past.

"I had the opportunity in the 1990s to see what it was like not to be able to progress your career because you were stuck in an MOS or a job that you couldn't move forward in," said Staff Sgt. Carinda Horton, a Duluth recruiter whose daughter has also just enlisted in the Minnesota National Guard. "Now this new group of people who are able to join are going to have all those opportunities and that way they can choose a job that they want. They can find something in a line unit that they can do that will allow them to progress their career."

According to Pazdernik, the success of the recruiting battalion comes not just from having great recruiters, but also from living in a state where so many citizens are willing to step forward to serve.

"In the National Guard there's something that really distinguishes us from our active duty counterparts," said Pazdernik. "We live here, we work here, we serve here. We are members of our community; we take a lot of pride in our organization and we believe people want to be part of something great."

March 25, 2016
by Master Sgt. Blair Heusdens
Minnesota National Guard Public Affairs



Download best photos





Articles archive

In The News archive

Media Advisory archive

Latest News

34th Inf. Div. Commander Re-Dedicates Intersection to Fallen Massachusetts WWII Red Bull

Posted: 2017-09-20  08:33 AM
Winthrop WINTHROP, Mass. - Settled in 1630, Winthrop is one of the oldest communities in the United States. Service members of all branches of the military from this seaside town just north of Boston have fought on behalf of their state and nation since the Revolutionary War. On Saturday, Sept. 16th, Maj. Gen. Jon Jensen, the commanding general of the Minnesota-based 34th Red Bull Infantry Division, participated in a ceremony that honored one of Winthrop's own: Pvt. 1st Class Andrew Biggio.

Like so many young men of his era, 19-year old Winthrop native Andrew Giovanni Biggio raised his hand to volunteer for service in 1944. He was assigned to B Company, 135th Infantry Regiment of the 34th Infantry Division. An infantryman, Biggio fought valiantly with the Red Bulls, liberating the Italian towns of Viterbo, Cecina and Liverno. His heroic actions in combat earned Pvt. 1st Class Biggio a Bronze Star Medal.



Minnesota National Guard to highlight diversity and leadership development at Women's Leadership Forum

Posted: 2017-09-15  10:45 AM
Minnesota National Guard FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 15, 2017

MAPLEWOOD, Minn.- Nearly 650 soldiers and airmen are scheduled to attend the Minnesota National Guard's third annual Women's Leadership Forum at the 3M Corporate Headquarters Saturday, Sept. 16, 2017.

"The Minnesota National Guard continues to diversify our force and grow strong leaders," said Brig. Gen. Sandy Best, chief of staff of the Minnesota Air National Guard. "Strong leaders are able to self-manage and channel emotions to produce desired behaviors and results."

The forum is part of an overall effort to promote an inclusive culture, diversify the organization, grow strong leaders and provide professional leadership development for both women and men. The topics will focus on emotional intelligence, leadership, high performing teams and creating a championship culture.



Minnesota Guardsmen tasked for support to Hurricane Irma relief efforts

Posted: 2017-09-11  02:20 PM
133 AW FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 11, 2017

ST. PAUL, Minn.- This past weekend the Minnesota Air National Guard sent 41 Airmen to support response efforts for Hurricane Irma. Six Soldiers from the Minnesota Army National Guard also departed this morning to support relief efforts.

"I thank Major General Nash for his leadership, and the brave Minnesota National Guard soldiers who will provide assistance in Hurricane Irma response and relief efforts," said Governor Dayton. "I encourage all Minnesotans who are able to contribute to qualified relief efforts. Minnesota stands ready to assist those affected by Hurricane Irma in any way we are able."

The 41 Airmen come from the 133rd Airlift Wing based in St. Paul and have a variety of skillsets. Fourteen of the Airmen are with the unit's Aeromedical Evacuation Squadron and specially trained in emergency medical evacuations. They are currently on standby at Scott Air Force Base in Illinois where they will support potential missions in the Caribbean or Southern United States. The remaining personnel comprised of Airlift Control Flight, Logistics Readiness and Security Forces, arrived today at St. Thomas in the Virgin Islands where they will assist in recovery operations. The Airmen can support airports with skills and equipment to re-establish operations after disasters, secure aircraft and load and unload equipment.



Minnesota National Guard to send aviation assets to support Hurricane Harvey

Posted: 2017-09-01  10:42 AM
Minnesota National Guard FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 1, 2017

ST. PAUL, Minn.- Governor Dayton has approved 11 soldiers from the Minnesota National Guard's 34th Combat Aviation Brigade to support response efforts for Hurricane Harvey. The soldiers will depart today from St. Cloud via CH-47 chinook helicopters to conduct aviation operations in Texas.

"I am glad that Minnesota will be able to assist the victims of the terrible tragedy in Texas, with 11 Minnesota National Guard soldiers accompanying two Chinook helicopters to join in relief efforts," said Governor Dayton. "I thank Major General Nash for his leadership, and the brave Minnesota soldiers, who will travel to Texas to provide this critical relief. I encourage all Minnesotans, who are able, to donate to the qualified relief efforts. Minnesota stands ready to assist in any way we can."

The Minnesota National Guard's 34th Combat Aviation Brigade is an Army National Guard unit that supports disaster response operations by providing aviation capabilities - both UH-60 Black Hawk and CH-47 Chinook helicopters.



Article archive
 
top