|Personnel||Adjutant General's Biography||Command Message||TAG Policies|
Hello, everyone. It’s been more than 18 months since I authored this section of the Guard Times. I have really enjoyed having our other senior leaders provide their perspective as the lead to the magazine.
When last I wrote this section of the Guard Times, we were in the middle of our COVID response throughout the state and were then focused on vaccinations. Well, a lot has changed since then, and I want to take a few minutes of your time to provide my thoughts.
Many of you have heard my three priorities for the organization. They are Safety, Strength and Readiness. All three are focused on our people. People are our most important asset and therefore, are the most important thing we have.
Without each of you – our service members and employees, we cannot be successful.
September has been a sad and tragic month for us. Two Soldiers and an Airmen took their lives by suicide. They chose a permanent solution to a temporary problem.
I remind each of you that we have significant resources to help our people get through hard times in their lives – be it relationships, financial, spiritual, or whatever the issues may be.
We have licensed social workers, financial planners, and chaplains within our organizations, and outside assistance available to you.
All this information is available from our Family Programs office either through a phone call or online on the DMNA website.
Seeking assistance – for any reason, is not a sign of weakness, IT IS A SIGN OF STRENGTH!
I did not come up with this, but another senior leader recently said “if you hurt your leg, you go see a doctor, and the same goes for suicidal thoughts or depression, ask for assistance! It's no different than seeing a doctor for any other ailment or injury.”
As a reminder, if you are in crisis, dial the national suicide and crisis hotline at “988.”
People are our most valuable resource. We need each of you to be successful.
Looking at our formations, the New York Army and Air National Guard are each doing very well on the strength front, with the Army National Guard leading the nation for the third year in a row on accessions and retention.
At the end of September, our New York Army National Guard is assigned over 10,950 or more than 107.5% and the New York Air National Guard is assigned more than 5,800 or more than 101.8%. The Naval Militia has grown more than 300 members this past year and the New York Guard has added dozens of new members. These are fantastic achievements that are attributable to each of you and your commitment to serve our state and nation. Thank you.
We also continue to support our State Active Duty missions on many fronts. On Sept. 14, 2023 and again on Sept. 25, Governor Hochul visited our service members to thank them for their ongoing support.
In preparation for Hurricane Lee, she visited Soldiers and Airmen in Farmingdale and then visited with service members supporting the asylum seeker mission at the 5th Avenue Armory in Harlem.
As always, I am super impressed with your dedication and commitment to service.
When we say we’re all about people – we mean it. You are truly the most important thing we have. We need you all – be it our service members, civilian employees, and families.
I thank you and look forward to seeing more of you as I continue to travel the state and our formations.