Fort Dodge, IA --
A commander’s responsibilities are not only to ensure units under their command are ready for service, but that they also have the facilities and equipment needed to accomplish their missions.
On March 30, Maj. Gen. Tim Orr, The Adjutant General of the Iowa National Guard, travelled to Fort Dodge, Iowa to visit two of his units, the Iowa Army National Guard’s 1st Battalion, 194th Field Artillery and the Iowa Air National Guard’s 133rd Test Squadron.
“This is your opportunity to let us know what works and what doesn’t,” said Orr to the Soldiers and Airmen of those units.
Orr toured the armories and buildings and spoke with servicemembers to learn about their missions. The 194th is tasked with providing indirect fire using the M119, 105mm howitzer. The 133rd conducts testing on command and control systems.
During the Fort Dodge visit, the 133rd hosted a lunch for the visiting delegation and local community leaders.
“Our partnership with the community keeps us going,” Orr told the audience. He spoke of the contributions the Fort Dodge community has made to those who serve here.
Orr also discussed a few of the initiatives started in the community in partnership with the Iowa Guard, to include the 3E program, which seeks to “Enlist, Educate, and Employ,” today’s youth for professional careers in the Iowa National Guard.
“We partnered with Iowa Central Community College to start the 3E program,” Orr explained. He added the program was started to assist eligible candidates to enlist, get an education, and find a job with an Iowa employer.
“We are part-time Soldiers and Airmen and when we’re not serving, we’re working in the community.”
Orr pointed out how a recent study reported 44 percent of Iowans were unable to pay for college. In addition to the valuable skills and experience duty with the Iowa National Guard can provide, servicemembers also have an opportunity to get 100 percent tuition assistance at Iowa colleges, plus a monthly stipend from the GI Bill.
“There is a value to service,” Orr stated.
Maj. George Mosby, the executive officer for the 194th, showed Orr and other Iowa National Guard senior leaders around the battalion’s facilities and showcased some of the new equipment his Soldiers use in their artillery missions. In addition, they discussed what the unit is doing to engage with the Fort Dodge community and strengthen their relationship in north central Iowa.
“He wanted to know how the unit is doing and how our facility is doing,” said Mosby. “He wanted to focus in on that and make sure we have what we need to do our mission.”