TAG Line May 3, 2019

Educators' Day

On April 27, about 30 civilian educators boarded UH-60 Black Hawks bound for Camp Grafton Training Center near Devils Lake. The flights originated from Dickinson, Williston, Minot, Fargo, Jamestown and Bismarck. The purpose of Educators' Day was to provide these "centers of influence" within our educational system a day of military experience, which included everything from a tour of the 164th Regional Institute's training facility and observing military classes in session, to rappelling from the tower; to firing Mk-19 grenade launcher and other simulators to eating military field rations, better known as MREs. Most of this group of civic leaders are educators and school counselors. (Top photo: Principal David Nowatzki, Carrington High School, rappels under the watchful eye of Staff Sgt. Joshua Peterson).

Top left: Educators learn to inspect and don rappel seats. Top Right: Melissa Spelchen, Assistant Professor of Criminal Justice, Minot State University, operates the MK-19 simulator. Educators that participated in the day of familiarization and training pose with Army Guard aviators that transported them to Camp Grafton Training Center.

The educators were hosted by members of our Army Guard Recruiting and Retention Battalion and were supported by members of the 164th Regional Training Institute as well as our Army Guard aviators.

Bridge Builder Award - North Dakota Broadcasters Association

The North Dakota Broadcasters Association (NDBA) was presented the N.D. Guard's Bridge Builder Award. The Bridge Builder award consists of a panel pin, which is used to connect sections of the U.S. Army Bailey Bridge. Like the bridge pin, this award represents the bonds between our organizations and the bridges built together ensuring readiness and enduring success of the North Dakota National Guard.

North Dakota Army Guard Recruiters and broadcasters from the Fargo area pose with the Bridge Builder Award which was accepted by Beth Helfrich on behalf of the NDBA.

Our Army Guard recruiters meet monthly with members of the NDBA at various locations around the state. These engagements allow the participants to discuss recruiting and build on the great relationships between the broadcasters and our recruiters. The NDBA is committed to helping our recruiting effort through the broadcast of National Guard advertising. Recruiters can use these relationships to tell the North Dakota National Guard story and highlight outstanding recruits across the state.

9th Annual Camp Grafton Boy Scouts Merit Badge Week-end

Over 70 Boy Scouts from all across North Dakota descended on Camp Grafton Training Center near Devils Lake April 27-28, to partner with instructors from the 164th Regional Training Institute (164 RTI). The 164th RTI instructors taught five Merit Badge classes to the Boy Scouts; cooking, plumbing, home repair, fire safety and orienteering.

Left: Sgt. 1st Class David Weber assists scouts with their stair risers. Top: Staff Sgt. Chris Eppler shows a young Scout how to install an electrical outlet for his Home repair Merit Badge. Right: Sgt. 1st Class Jason Runquist provides an overview of plumbing to Liam Sondeland, Troop 73.

POW / MIA Flag Raising Ceremony

Members of the North Dakota National Guard participated in a ceremony raising the POW/MIA flag at the state capital on May 1. Legislation was enacted that decreed that this flag always accompany the U.S. Flag on the flagpole at the visitor entrance of the North Dakota capital building. May we never forget those who have served before us, and those who are yet to come home.

The honor of raising the POW / MIA flag for the first time fell to retired Air Force Colonel Vern Huber who was a POW for 16 months during the Korean War.
National Guard members salute as the POW / MIA flag was raised on the state capital building grounds for the first time on May 1.


The Command Staff of the state Multi-Agency Coordination Center (MACC) held its first meeting on May 1 at Fraine Barracks in Bismarck, to assist flood-affected communities through the recovery process. While much has already been done to assist those suffering losses and damages, the MACC provides a framework for coordination of state, federal and non-governmental agencies.

Members of the Multi-Agency Coordination Center include Maj. Gen. Al Dohrmann, adjutant general; Cody Schulz, director of Homeland Security; and members of other state agencies.

Utilizing public and private partners and disaster recovery processes to address agriculture, residential and economic issues, MACC is poised to meet the needs of our citizens during disasters as much as possible.

Briefing with the Boss

The 119th Wing, also known as the Happy Hooligans, teamed up with Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR) to host approximately 30 employers for the annual Briefing with the Boss.

Employers, ESGR volunteers and Airmen from the 119th Wing gather after a successful Briefing with the Boss event in Fargo.

The event welcomed employers to the Air National Guard base to showcase the capabilities of the 119th Wing, to explain the mission of ESGR and to thank the employers for their support to the North Dakota National Guard.

Top - Left to right: Delton Steele, N.D. ESGR State Chairman; Eric Mickelson, High Point Networks; Capt. Kris Schiele, 119th Wing; and Dave Johnston, N.D. ESGR Vice Chair. Mickelson received the ESGR Patriot Award for his outstanding support of Capt. Schiele's National Guard service. Bottom Left: Col Darrin Anderson, 119th Wing commander, provides an overview of the 119th Wing's missions. Bottom right: Capt. Jason Augdahl, 119th Security Forces Squadron commander, provides a weapons overview during the Briefing with the Boss.

North Dakota Guardian Earns Third Place in DoD Media Contest

The North Dakota Guardian, the official publication of the North Dakota National Guard, won third place in the 2018 Defense Media Merit Award program.

Winning entry "North Dakota Guardian Fall 2018" edition

According to the Defense Media Activity, the Defense Media Awards program honors excellence among military and civilian broadcasters, graphic artists, journalists, photographers, public affairs practitioners, mass communication specialists and videographers. The annual awards program is open to military units, military personnel and civilian employees of the DoD and the Military Services including active-duty, Reserve, and National Guard. While the North Dakota Guardian previously has placed at National Guard-level competitions, this is the first time it has been recognized at the DoD level. Staff Sgt. Eric W. Jensen serves as the magazine's editor.

Click here to read the winning edition.

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NDNG Public Affairs