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TAG Line November 20, 2020

1st Lt. Crystal Telling, 119th Wing, working with Sgt. Casey Gourde, 141st MEB, to help support execution of command and control of the NDNG’s COVID-19 missions as a members of Task Force Hooligan at the Fargo Armed Forces Center in Fargo, N.D., on Oct. 28, 2020. (U.S. Air National Guard Photo by David H. Lipp)

BLIZZEX Exercise 2020

Over 40 N.D. National Guard Members participated in a blizzard response exercise (BLIZZEX) at the Raymond J. Bohn armory in Bismarck, N.D. on Nov. 15, 2020. The Guard partnered with the N.D. Department of Emergency Services and local emergency managers from Morton and Burleigh Counties, as well as the city of Bismarck. This event, which enables the Guard to ensure readiness in case they are called to duty, exercised the relation between the National Guard and the support provided to civilian authorities in the response to a paralyzing blizzard. Due to COVID-19 restrictions this year's exercise only featured the soldiers from Joint Force Headquarters. (Story and photos by Sgt. 1st Class Charles Highland, N.D. National Guard Public Affairs Office)

Lt. Col. Mark McEvers, Joint Force Headquarters, led the blizzard response exercise by describing how the exercise would proceed at the Raymond J. Bohn armory in Bismarck, N.D. on Nov. 15.

Lt. Col. Grant Larson, Domestic Operations Planning division, helps guides the support that each staff section and directorate is responsible for during a blizzard response exercise at the Raymond J. Bohn armory in Bismarck, N.D. on Nov. 15.

Senior Master Sgt. Luke Gardiner, Joint Force Headquarters, discusses his responsibilities during a blizzard response exercise at the Raymond J. Bohn armory in Bismarck, N.D. on Nov. 15.

Lt. Col. Mark McEvers, Joint Force Headquarters, leads an after action review of the blizzard response exercise on Nov. 15.

N.D. Guard Reaches Milestone in COVID Support

The N.D. National Guard reached a new milestone in domestic support operations on Nov. 18 when COVID-19 support exceeded the efforts of the 2011 state-wide flood support mission. The N.D. Guard was activated for duty on March 16 and has conducted support operations for 248 consecutive days. The 2011 flood response saw Guard members on duty for 142 days. Today, about 270 Soldiers and Airmen remain on COVID-19 duty.

North Dakota Guardsmen have supported, and will continue to support the response to this pandemic with a myriad of tasks. These include administering COVID-19 tests, strategic response planning, and deep cleaning at long-term and congregate living facilities. Guard members have also aided in the transportation of test specimens and provided other support to the state laboratory in Bismarck. In total, over 680 North Dakota Soldiers and Airmen have performed COVID-19 response duty.

TASK FORCE HOOLIGAN

Members of the 119th Wing, North Dakota Air National Guard, assumed command and control of the North Dakota National Guard’s (NDNG) COVID-19 related missions and operations on Oct. 26, 2020. (U.S. Air National Guard story and photos by David H. Lipp)

Members of Task Force Hooligan, led by Lt. Col. Allen Albright, lower left, work command and control of the N.D. National Guard's COVID-19 missions on Oct. 28.

Happy Hooligan Airmen have effectively worked jointly with N.D. National Guard Soldiers from across the state to ensure successful execution of COVID-19 support missions since March. These missions include facilitating testing operations, cleaning of long-term care facilities and transport of medical supplies. Now, the Hooligans are actively executing command and control of the statewide COVID-19 missions, while working jointly with their Army colleagues. They’ve been dubbed, Task Force Hooligan. This task force will control operations until its 45-day rotation ends in early December, at which time an Army Guard unit will assume control.

Photo - Tech. Sgt. Tracy Bassett, lower right, supports execution of command and control of the Task Force Hooligan's COVID-19 missions at the Fargo Armed Forces Reserve Center in Fargo.

“It’s been an excellent opportunity and experience to work together with Soldiers from the N.D. Army Guard to support these important COVID-19 support missions,” said 1st Lt Crystal Telling, the 119 Wing’s director of personnel. She is working personnel management for Task Force Hooligan. “We’re managing hundreds of Soldiers’ and Airmen’s paperwork from across seven regions in the state as they come on or off orders. It’s logistically challenging, but also very rewarding.”

Photo - Lt. Col. Jenn Silbernagel, Task Force Hooligan, supports execution of command and control of the N.D. National Guard’s COVID-19 support missions at the Fargo Armed Forces Reserve Center in Fargo.

Joint Operations Center

The Joint Operations Center (JOC) is the driving force behind domestic mission success in the N.D. National Guard. Behind the scenes, they plan and track coordinating details needed for Soldiers and Airmen to accomplish their missions. They also act as liaison between the National Guard and supported local and state agencies coordinating the details required to effectively support the whole-of-government support in containing COVID-19. The Guard will continue its support in the fight against COVID-19 as long as it is needed.

Maj. Callie Stein and Capt. David Stein of the Joint Operations Center (JOC) support COVID-19 operations in the Joint Operations Center at Fraine Barracks in Bismarck, N.D. on Nov. 19, 2020.

Spc. Leah Thomson, 141st Maneuver Enhancement Brigade, works on personnel issues in support of COVID-19 response efforts in the JOC on Nov. 18.

Master Sgt. Dale Franchuk fills out the daily COVID-19 information tracker in the Joint Operations Center on Nov. 19, 2020.

Celebrating Veterans Day

The St. Mary's Central High School Symphonic Band and Wind Orchestra performed their first fall band concert of the year on Veterans Day in Bismarck, N.D. The concert paid tribute to our Nation and to those who have served in the Armed Forces. Saint Mary’s Academy instructor Officer Candidate Kellen Tibor read a powerful letter from a fallen war hero during one of the musical pieces. Tibor serves in the N.D. Army National Guard. (Photos by Renae Jacob and story by Anne Chambers of St. Mary’s Central High School)

St. Mary's Central High School Symphonic Band and Wind Orchestra performs as Officer Candidate Kellen Tibor reads a letter from a fallen war hero.

Professional Development on Sexual Assault and Harassment

Professional development focusing on domestic violence, sexual assault and harassment was conducted at the Raymond J. Bohn armory in Bismarck, N.D. on Nov. 18, 2020. The audience consisted of military and civilians employees of the N.D. National Guard both in person and online. Presentations like this help leaders and others to better recognize and understand the signs of abuse and remind them of their responsibilities to help enforce standards and correct the situation. (Story and photos by Sgt. 1st Class Charles Highland, N.D. National Guard Public Affairs)

Brig. Gen. Jackie Huber, deputy adjutant general, right and Command Sgt. Major Derek Heck, state command sergeant major, listen to Maj. Jacquelyn Flemmer, Victim Advocate, during professional development training at the Raymond J. Bohn Armory in Bismarck on Nov. 18.

Maj. Jacquelyn Flemmer, Victim Advocate, defines domestic abuse during professional development training at the Raymond J. Bohn Armory on Nov. 18.

Mr. Robert Roehrich, State Equality Employment Manager, discusses sexual harassment and the negative effects it has on the work force during professional development training at the Raymond J. Bohn Armory in Bismarck on Nov. 18.

Sgt. 1st Class Brett Miller, Visual Information, live-streams the professional development Raymond J. Bohn Armory on Nov. 18.

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ND National Guard Public Affairs Office
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