Alaska hosts senior leadership for National Guard Arctic Summit

Alaska National Guard Public Affairs
Story by Staff Sgt. Balinda Dresel

Date: 01.24.2017
Posted: 01.25.2017 00:51
News ID: 221225
Alaska hosts senior leadership for National Guard Arctic Summit

JOINT BASE ELMENDORF-RICHARDSON, Alaska — The Alaska National Guard kicked off the 2017 National Guard Arctic Summit at the Mission Command Training Center on Fort Wainwright, Jan. 24.

The three-day event affords leadership from across the nation to enhance their understanding of the Arctic operational environment and set the stage for how the National Guard supports our Arctic nation.

“As a National Guard, we are uniquely poised to contribute to such efforts with our unique capabilities, equipment, personnel, and Arctic experience,” said Maj. Gen. Laurie Hummel, the adjutant general, AKNG. “I believe this summit will enhance [participants’] understanding of the Arctic operational environment and lay the foundation for our way ahead.”

Leadership began the summit with briefings by subject matter experts in the Arctic region and will follow with opportunities to visit local communities, participate in lively discussion, experience Arctic operations and attend cultural awareness events. The team will visit the Permafrost Tunnel, Arctic Energy Critical Infrastructure, Museum of the North in Fairbanks and the Arctic Research Center and Inupiat Heritage Center in Utiqiagvik.

“You will receive first-hand knowledge of the geography, harsh climate, dispersed communities, cultural diversity and wonderful people that are characteristic of the region,” added Hummel, to the more than 60 participants from North American Aerospace Defense Command, U.S. Northern Command, National Guard Bureau and Alaska, Connecticut, Colorado, Maine, New Hampshire, New York, Vermont, Washington, Wisconsin and Wyoming National Guard organizations.

The summit will culminate with a ribbon cutting ceremony signifying the opening of the new Alaska National Guard barracks in Utiqiagvik and signing of the National Guard Arctic Intererst Council Charter, which will outline the mission, organization, responsibilities, and function of the National Guard Arctic Interest Council.

“These activities pave the way for the National Guard to play a cohesive, unified, and vital role in collaborating with the Department of Defense in support of the United States Arctic strategy and policy,” said Hummel.