Story by: Spc. Melissa Eckard - 42nd Infantry Division Dated: Fri, Jan 30, 2009
Brigadier General Patrick Murphy, Director of Joint Staff, conducts an after action report of the lessons learned and the impact of the JOC 101 training. Photo by Spc. Melissa Eckard, 42nd Infantry Division.
LATHAM - Captain Nick Suhr, commander of Headquarters Company, 42nd Infantry Division knows how his unit operates. Now, as a result of attending a week-long course called Joint Operations Center (JOC) 101, he is more knowledgeable of the overall domestic support mission of the New York National Guard.
Suhr was one of more than 50 Army and Air National Guard members who trained on JOC practices and procedures ranging from Homeland Security to natural disasters at Joint Forces Headquarters here, Jan. 26-30.
The New York National Guard’s state-of-the-art JOC is the place from which the State Adjutant General can manage information and communication during an emergency or operation
According to Suhr, new commander of HHC, he is responsible for ensuring that the 42nd
“Rainbow” Division staff has movement and communication capabilities to respond in a mobile environment.
JOC 101 teaches how to maintain situational awareness of both internal and external environments and provides proven tools, techniques and procedures. It also shows how to assign and track military missions and tasks effectively.
Throughout the course, attendees became familiar with several federal agencies’ roles and responsibilities, their impact on national security and defense, as well as their partnership capabilities. Students learned how these agencies conduct all-hazards incident response and how to link all levels of government, private-sector, and nongovernmental organizations in a unified approach to emergency management.
Anthony Riscica, the Domestic Operations Program Manager for IIF Data Solutions, Inc. and a course instructor said that when Guardsmen have an understanding of what the JOC is and does, it increases their readiness.
“The whole course is designed to provide instruction to JOC personnel to increase the readiness of the state,” said Riscica, a retired New York Army National Guard colonel. “Once completing the course, attendees are better prepared to support their operations and have the ability to do their job better.”
The attending officers and staff non-commissioned officers learned that the first 72 hours of a mission, communications, security search and stability are critical. The JOC environment must be mission-focused, professional, calm, organized and have clear leadership roles in order to run efficiently.
“The JOC is important because it is the central point for information flow of whatever unit has command of a situation,” Suhr said.
Their new skills were put to the test as students participated in a simulated JOC exercise where they established a battle rhythm using newly taught situational awareness tools, information management sources and mission management procedures.
“This training is something that can help me better prepare our Soldiers for an emergency,” Suhr said. “As I move along in my military career I’ll understand what it takes to run a JOC and I’ll know the roles that need to be filled.”