/*********************************************** * 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 ***********************************************/
Minnesota National Guard
210th Engineering Installation Squadron marks 45 Years of operational excellence and community involvement

210th EIS ST. PAUL, Minn. - There are many jobs in the Air Force that are vital to the mission but are not always visible. However, just because something isn't visible doesn't mean that it isn't important. Take for instance the ability to communicate with one another. The fundamentally simple process of making a phone call or sending an email is much more involved than just dialing a phone or clicking a computer mouse.

Enter the job of the 210th Engineering Installation Squadron - the unsung hero of connectivity. Although they work on the network, the 210th Airmen are not to be confused with those in the communications career fields. Their mission is different. For 45-years strong, they have been the hardline of communication between buildings and the wire between the web.

"We do all of the backbone infrastructure for the installation of communication equipment," said Lt. Col. Brian Winter, the unit's 12th commander. What that means is anything that transmits over fiber optic or copper cabling - or anything that goes into the ground or inside of a building - it is the unit's job to bring it to the back end of the equipment in a server room. Additionally, the 210th has the capability to install airfield equipment that controls the take-off and landing equipment that communicates with aircraft.

The mission of the 210th Engineering Installation Squadron is to train and deploy qualified personnel to engineer, install, and restore Command, Control, Communication, Computer, and Intelligence (C4I) systems in support of theater and tactical force commanders.

"When you join you really don't know what to expect," said Senior Airman Sarah Walz, a cable and antenna systems journeyman. "But if you're willing to work hard and you're willing to do some of the dirty work, it really pans out."

Walz has been with the unit and the 133rd for just over two years and is the recent recipient of the Wing's Unit Integrity Award for her work on tower-climbing and safety procedures.

"My favorite part of the job is the variety," said Walz. "You can be inside, outside, on towers or in the ground [underground cable installation] - that's what keeps it interesting. But seeing the impact my job has on the entire Air Force is what tops it off; you realize the impact of what communications has on the Air Force and how vital it is to everyone, it puts it all into perspective."

Forty-five years ago the rotary-dial telephone, connected to a switchboard, was one of the hardware end-states that the 210th linked up to the networked system; an elemental lineage that is depicted in their unit crest still to this day. Current operations support a much more expansive means of hardline networking along with wireless transmission capabilities that connect Airmen and equipment across the globe to one another.

Operationally, the 210th EIS is a geographically-separated unit that falls under the command of the 251st Cyber Engineering Installation Group out of Ohio. For administrative control, they are under the Mission Support Group at the 133rd Airlift Wing in Minnesota.

"Although we operate under a different command, we are still very much a part of the fabric that makes up the 133rd and the Minnesota National Guard," said Winter. "Our people are just amazing and their love of the mission and our base is really what I think distinguishes us from other units in the Guard, and I'm constantly amazed by what our folks do."

One of the key aspects of the 210th's mission is their mobility. A highly sought-after and deployable unit, they have engineered and installed infrastructure for the Department of Defense in more than 36 U.S. States, including Alaska and Hawaii, and have deployed to more than 26 foreign countries to set up or assist in the installation of landing systems and communications infrastructure.

In addition to their active role in the global mission, the 210th also takes a very active role in its involvement here in the communities of Minnesota, something that the unit's 45-year history proudly reflects. From base activities, such as the Starbase program to assisting at local veteran's homes, community service is something that the 210th has been a part of since the beginning.

The 210th is located on-base at the 133rd Airlift Wing - the same place they have called home since 1979. With communication requirements being ever more critical to the mission, the unit looks forward to continued excellence from the men and women that make up the squadron.

December 14, 2016
by Tech. Sgt. Paul Santikko
133rd Airlift Wing Public Affairs

Download best photos

Articles archive

In The News archive

Media Advisory archive

Latest News

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."

Securing the Bold North: Minnesota National Guard supports Super Bowl LII

Posted: 2018-02-02  10:45 PM
Super Bowl 52 MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. - More than 400 Minnesota National Guardsmen are supporting security efforts in Minneapolis ahead of Super Bowl 52.

"This is what we do," said Maj. Gen. Jon Jensen, Adjutant General of the Minnesota National Guard. "When the local community can't meet the public safety needs, they come to the Guard. We're their normal partner, we're a natural partner, and we're their preferred partner when it comes to filling in the gaps that they can't fill."

At the request of the city, Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton authorized the Minnesota National Guard to provide support to security efforts leading up to and during Super Bowl 52. The Guardsmen are providing direct support to and working alongside law enforcement officers from across the state. Like their civilian law enforcement partners, Minnesota Guardsmen are focused on ensuring a safe experience for the residents and visitors who are attending the Super Bowl festivities.

Article archive