≈ MESSAGE FROM LEADERSHIP ≈
I am honored to be the next Vermont National Guard State Command Sergeant Major and senior-enlisted advisor for our force. I first want to thank Command Sgt. Maj. Toby Quick for all of the work he performed in the position to do what is best for our Soldiers and Airmen.
I have two major aspects I want our enlisted Soldiers and Airmen to focus on: developmental leadership and training. A priority for the Adjutant General is military education, and developing our force has always been one of my priorities as a non-commissioned officer. We need to ensure our Guardsmen are prepared and able to train.
Our Soldiers and Airmen need basic and advanced leadership courses to progress their military careers, but they also need additional skills-based training to be the best technical experts in their career fields. With the increased OPTEMPO we have had throughout the last few years, this can be extremely difficult and is asking a lot from our Guardsmen.
However, we need our enlisted leaders to prepare and assist our junior-enlisted members with timelines for training. We need to balance civilian employment, family care plans, and Vermont National Guard commitments with the time needed to reach members' benchmarks of military education.
The bottom line, Soldiers and Airmen must be ready for their primary military education and technical requirements within their military careers. We need to ensure they are ready and able to meet and exceed the high demands of their professions. It is on us to give them the tools and guidance to successfully reach those requirements.
Stay Fired Up!!!
- CSM Nathan Chipman, State Command Sergeant Major
≈ VERMONT SOLDIERS TACKLE VORTEX EXTREME ≈
DOUGLAS, Wy– For the first time, two Vermont Army National Guard Soldiers teamed-up to compete in the Vortex Extreme shooting competition held in Douglas, Wyoming, August 10, 2019. As part of Vermont’s Competitive Marksmanship Program, U.S. Army Sgt. Conner Norton and U.S. Army Spc. Michael Kerr assigned to Charlie Troop, 1st Squadron, 172nd Cavalry Regiment, 86th Infantry Brigade Combat Team (Mountain), participated in the ten-mile shooting trek that hosted a combined 77 buddy-teams.
The competitors checked in Friday evening to review event procedures, rules, and safety awareness. The next morning Kerr and Norton commenced the single day 10-mile sniper endurance test.
The course consisted of ten separate shooting stations with four targets per station. The competitors were allotted 80 rounds or two per target. The shooters were graded on their performance with 70-percent of the score based on shot accuracy, and 30-percent based on course time completion.
“This match was difficult because of the elevation of the race…and that everything was subject to time,” said Kerr. “Even with generous amounts of time at the shooting stages, your cumulative course time started with everything packed on your back from start to finish. You had to make a game plan, build a shooting position at each stage, and engage the targets all under time restraints, tons of fun.”
U.S. Army Chief Warrant Officer 5 Lawrence Grace, Small Arms Readiness Training (SART) officer in charge, estimated that the course started at 5,000 ft. of elevation and ended closer to 9,000 ft. Distance for targets varied in range from 200-yards, to 1,300-yards.
“We can’t shoot in these conditions anywhere in Vermont,” said Norton.
Both Vermont Guard snipers secured a sixth place finish out of the 77 teams, finished frouth in their division, and won the second stage of the competition outright.
Norton also utilized his Army-issued sniper rifle and ammunition throughout the competition while other competitors utilized customized civilian rifles. According to Norton, he has significant confidence in the quality of equipment used throughout the Vermont National Guard, and trusts he can take his equipment and perform with it anywhere.
Story by U.S. Army National Guard Sgt. Denis Nuñez
≈ VERMONT PROMOTES A NEW BRIGADIER GENERAL ≈
≈ LIGHTNING INBOUD: VTANG CONTINUES PREP FOR THE F-35 ≈
U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Joseph Mailloux and Master Sgt. Darren Adams, both assigned to the airfield management section of the 158th Operations Group, 158th Fighter Wing, inspect the flightline to ensure it meets all applicable requirements at the Vermont Air National Guard Base, South Burlington, Vt., Aug. 4, 2019. Inspections are done on the flightline daily as a prerequisite to flying, and are done alongside preparations ramping up ahead of F-35 Lightning IIs arriving at a future date. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Tech. Sgt. Ryan Campbell)
Story by U.S. Air National Guard Tech. Sgt. Garth Dunkel