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Wearing your heart on your sleeve

81st Repatching Inspiring others to take flight P. 4 Never leave a fallen soldier P. 22

Caps off for 2K Youth Academy graduates 2000th student P. 8 New deputy director brings energy to Washington EMD P. 34 MIL.WA.GOV VOL III // ISSUE 2 - 1



Inspiring others to take flight 4

2000th Graduates youth academy 8

Wearing your heart on your sleeve 10 state of assistance 16

never leave a fallen soldier10 Photo by Spc Perry Gilchrist

Leading the way 34


Inspiring others to take flight

Story by Sgt. 1st Class Jason Kriess


Chief Warrant Officer 2 Sean Quillin carefully navigated his UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter above a crowd of wind-swept high school kids. Below him was the wide-open gridiron of Emerald Ridge High School’s football field. The students belong to the school’s aviation program at Emerald Ridge, located in Puyallup, Washington, which is one of the few high schools within the state that has an aviation program for its students. Students who have a strong interest in becoming pilots have the opportunity to learn some of the many aspects of aviation like aerodynamics and the physics of flight. In December, Emerald Ridge partnered with the local National Guard unit to bring a helicopter to its school to give students the chance to talk to real pilots and sit in real helicopters. As the helicopter gracefully touched down on the field, Quillin from Charlie Company, 1st Battalion (Assault), 140th Aviation Regiment, couldn’t help but flashback to the

Photos by Jennifer Picardo

Inspiring others to take flight time when he was a young student down on that very same field and watched a helicopter land in front of him. Only the helicopter wasn’t a Black Hawk, it was a CH-47 Chinook. “When you’re a 16- to 17-year-old kid it was the coolest thing ever to see a Chinook, one of the largest helicopters in the Army inventory, land on your football field,” Quillin said. “You feel the hurricane winds and … it almost didn’t even seem real back then, it was one of the coolest things to witness.” Quillin himself was a young aspiring pilot when he attended Emerald Ridge and was taking those same aviation classes, preparing himself for life as a pilot. But Quillin’s career as a helicopter pilot almost didn’t happen. He was actually in talks with his local Air Force recruiter to become a fighter pilot. Quillin said that he thought that flying a Chinook was just as cool as fighter jets so he jumped at the chance to fly helicopters. “Once the helicopter landed out at the school I saw a different route,” Quillin said. Quillin maintained contact with the pilots he saw that day and eventually joined the Washington National Guard as a helicopter mechanic. Later, he’d go on to flight school.

Photo by Sgt. 1st Class Jason Kriess

In fact, the same pilot who flew the Chinook to his school was the same person that helped get Quillin off to Warrant Officer School. Now, Quillin works with him daily. After he went to flight school and followed his path to become a pilot, he’d often thought about flying back to that high school to promote that same kind of experience. Quillin kept in contact with the teach-

ers in his aviation class over the years and finally got the opportunity to pilot his Black Hawk to Emerald Ridge. And now, as Quillin proudly shows off his Black Hawk, he hopes that his visit here will spark that love for aviation in a new generation of National Guard pilots. “That they would get the same kind of motivation for an aviation career is, honestly, all I want out of [this assignment],” he said.

“That they would get the same kind of motivation for an aviation career is, honestly, all I want out of [this assignment],� - Chief Warrant Officer 2 Sean Quillin said.

Class of 2016-2 features



ichael Perez was angry. He was lashing out at his parents, his brothers, his classmates. He was failing high school. Born with spastic quadriplegia cerebral palsy, Perez says he was also in pain all the time, blaming the world for his condition. Perez was about to drop out of Graham-Kapowsin High School near Puyallup when he learned about the Washington Youth Academy in Bremerton, a free quasi-military-type school that he says got his life back on track. For 22 weeks, he endured grueling physical exercises and honed his academic skills. He succeeded and walked during commencement on Dec. 17, 2016. Now, he’ll graduate from high school on time and he says he’s feeling better than ever.

“I’m trying to better my life and show my family I’m better than how I was,” he says. “I’ve accepted responsibility for all the things I’ve done bad and I’m moving forward.” Perez was the 2000th cadet to graduate from the Youth Academy and one of the 149 cadets from the 2016-2 cycle. Cadets from each corner of the state attend the free residential school geared at teaching teens discipline and helping them recover credits so they can go back to high school and earn a diploma or seek an alternative path to finish their high school education, such as a GED or by joining Running Start. The Washington Youth Academy is a division of the National Guard Youth ChalleNGe Program.

Photo by Steven Friederich

Perez stands with Major General Bret D. Daugherty, Secretary of State Kim Wyman, Gov. Jay Inslee and Major General (Ret.) Tim Lowenberg

“[The] 81st is just the second brigade in the National Guard to convert to Strykers joining the Pennsylvania’s Army National Guard, 56th MichaelStryker Perez was angry. He was lashing out at his parents his brothers, his classmates. H Brigade,” said Lt. was failing high school. Born with spastic quadriplegia cere Gen. Timothy J. bral palsy, Perez says he was also in pain all the time, blamKadavy, Army ing the world for his condition National Guard Perez was about to drop out of Graham-Kapowsin High Director.

Cover Story

Story by Staff Sgt. Virginia M. Owens

Photo by Spc Brianne Kim


s, He



Wearing your heart on your sleeve:

The repatching of the 81st Brigade


or more than 45 years the Washington National Guard’s 81st Stryker Brigade Combat Team (SBCT) has worn the iconic Ravens patch, officially approved for wear in May 1970. Today, they adopt the 2nd Infantry Division’s Indian Head patch and reveal the new Brigade colors symbolizing the unit’s transformation from an Armor Brigade to a Stryker Brigade. All seven units within the 81st SBCT, along with high ranking officials from Forces Command, Army National Guard, Washington National Guard and 7th Infantry Division (ID) fill the Washington National Guard’s Army Aviation Support Facility during the patch and flag-changing ceremony. “This is a historic and proud day for the cascade rifle brigade. The re-flagging ceremony signifies one significant chapter of our history serving as an armored BCT but it solidifies our future as a Stryker brigade,” Col. Bryan Grenon, commander of the 81st SBCT, explained in his opening remarks at the ceremony, December 3, 2016.

Story by Spc. Brianne Kim “The whole squad is excited to be a part of the 2nd ID, it is such a historic organization, but it’s kind of sad as well because the National Guard and its patches have earned a name for themselves,” said Lt. Col. John Quails, commander of the 81st SBCT’s 1-82 Cavalry Squadron stationed in Bend, Oregon. The 81st SBCT will be assigned to the 7th ID, stationed at Joint Base Lewis-McChord (JBLM). The 81st SBCT and 7th ID have a great deal of shared history — serving in both World Wars, the Cold War and Operation Enduring Freedom to name a few — but this new milestone is expected to strengthen an already sturdy relationship. “We look forward to seeing this partnership grow and set the stage for how we will train, build readiness and ultimately fight together as one Army in the future when our country calls,” said Maj. Gen. Bret D. Daugherty, the adjutant general, Washington National Guard. MIL.WA.GOV VOL III // ISSUE 2 - 11


The 81st SBCT and 7th ID were paired together as part of the Army’s Associated Units program. The program was announced March 2016 in response to the Army’s force reduction, creating increased readiness across all components of the Army and further strengthening the One Army concept. The program focuses on amplifying the relationships between active and reserve components and building greater interoperability through training, ensuring that the Army remains a highly capable and elite fighting force. Since the 81st SBCT’s transition to a Stryker Brigade the unit will begin actively training with the 7th ID’s 2nd Infantry Division. “One of the reasons we wanted to convert the 81st to a Stryker unit is that we believe it will allow us to have a much closer working relationship with our active duty brothers and enhance the readiness of both the National Guard and

“We have enjoyed our phenomenal relationship with the Washington, Oregon and California National Guard for years.” - Maj. Gen. Thomas S. James Jr. the active duty units that we will be training with,” Daugherty said. “I’m really excited about the new patch and looking forPhoto by SPC Brianne Kim

Photo by Sgt. Matthew Sissel

ward to the cross training we will have with active duty forces so we’re more familiar with working together,” said Sgt. Alex Maldonado, A CO 1- 161 Infantry Regiment, 81st SBCT. Gaining a Stryker Brigade is a tremendous benefit to not only Washington state but to Oregon and California who both host units of the 81st SBCT. Strykers will be more useful in the event of a state or regional emergency, such as the inevitable Cascadia Subduction Zone earthquake state agencies continuously plan and prepare for. “The Strykers will have more mobility and versatility to respond to natural disasters within the state of Washington,” said Lt. Gen.Timothy Kadavy, Director of the Army National Guard. The 81st SBCT is ready to conquer the many challenges associated with converting to a Stryker Brigade and being restructured under a new command, while both units are ready to let the new structure and Associated Unit program cement their already strong partnership. “This transition is not and will not be easy but the opportunities and the great challenges that come with the transition will make us a stronger brigade,” Grenon said. “We have enjoyed our phenomenal relationship with the Washington, Oregon and California National Guard for years and look forward to strengthening this partnership through the Associated Unit program. We are truly One Army,” said Maj. Gen. Thomas S. James Jr., commander of the 7th ID. For the latest information on the transformation, follow the Washington National Guard on Facebook.

Photo by Spc. Tyler Main


State of Assistance By Jonathan Koester

Oregon training center helps Soldiers soldiers transition transition to to infantry infantry 16 - EVERGREEN MAGAZINE VOL.III // ISSUE 2

Construction of the Umatilla Army Ordnance Depot began in 1941. With rail lines nearby, plus a port on the Columbia River, the site allowed easy movement of munitions while being far enough inland to be safe from sea attacks.


oldiers in the Military Occupation Specialty (MOS) Transition course of Oregon National Guard’s 249th Regional Training Institute (RTI) train on infantry tactics at Yakima Training Center,


Camp Umatilla, near Hermiston, Oregon, lacks the forested landscape and waterfalls usually associated with the Pacific Northwest. Instead, soldiers who want to change their MOS learn infantry skills while rucking past tumbleweeds and eerie-looking symmetrical mounds. Camp Umatilla is home to the Oregon National Guard’s 1st Infantry Training Battalion of the 249th Regional Training Institute and the only certified Army infantry training academy west of the Mississippi River in the continental United States. The camp was originally built during World War II to serve as a munitions storage area. Exactly 1,001 munitions storage

bunkers — now mostly empty — still dot the landscape, visible to travelers on the nearby interstate highway. Though the history is fascinating, infantry course instructors of the 249th RTI are more concerned with the future and preparing soldiers for the demands of service in the infantry. For those already in or transitioning to an infantry MOS, three courses are taught at Camp Umatilla. Junior enlisted soldiers who want to join the infantry go through the MOS-Transition course. NCOs who want to transition to infantry go through the Infantry Transition Course. And those NCOs who are already in the infantry and seek to be promoted can go through the Advanced Leader Course. Though active-duty and reserve soldiers from Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Washington and other duty stations train at Camp Umatilla, the two transition courses were recently crowded with National Guard soldiers from Washington and California,

according to Staff Sgt. Henry Snyder, a primary instructor for the RTI. “This year is kind of different than traditional years because there are National Guard units in California and Washington transitioning into a Stryker Infantry Brigade,” Snyder said. “So a lot of these soldiers are being told they need to change their MOS or look elsewhere. We get soldiers from a variety of MOSs and backgrounds, but by the end of the course, everyone is on the same page.” Though some soldiers must transition to infantry to keep their Army careers on the right paths, others volunteer to join the infantry because they are looking for something different than their current job, said Sgt. 1st Class Ryan Austin, course manager for the RTI’s infantry courses. “A lot of people transition because they like the job better,” Austin said. “They want to be one of the ground-pounders who carry the guns and do the shooting. They like to lead the way. It’s usually pretMIL.WA.GOV VOL III // ISSUE 2 - 17

ty aggressive, type-A personalities.”


them up.”

Asked what soldiers who are transitioning to infantry find the most surprising or have the hardest time with, Snyder said there are different answers, but he pointed to the overall stress of infantry life.

“The number one question, by far, is, ‘We have to carry this much weight on our backs?’” Black said. “It shocks people. Even people who think they have been training for this, they’ve been carrying, like, 35 pounds for six miles. That ain’t training. 35 pounds? I carry more than that in beer when I go camping. The first ruck march wakes

Black said the top lesson he tries to impress upon soldiers transitioning into infantry is that the workout routine they had before probably isn’t going to cut it anymore. Both the frequency and intensity of their exercise will need to increase.

“I think a lot of them coming into this feel that the infantry is just a bunch of mindless people who will run into a fire instead of run away from it,” Snyder said. “But there is a culture shock of what really goes into everything. From mission planning, to execution, to recovery, there are a lot of meticulous things that happen. “It’s a very difficult school that we run, but real-life situations are way more difficult than what we have here. We can add a little bit of stress — time management stuff, or carry heavy things for long distances — but, at the end of the day, nobody is shooting at them and nobody is getting blown up. “We can’t paint that picture of that stress and being able to think on that level, but we try as hard as we can to create a stress factor and also have the thought process that goes with it.” Sgt. 1st Class Eddie Black, MOS-T infantry instructor, said the physical difficulty of the job can surprise people, especially when they have to complete the 12-mile ruck march with more than 70 pounds of 18 - EVERGREEN MAGAZINE VOL.III // ISSUE 2

“A lot of people go to the gym and it’s like, ‘Let’s do an arm curl. Let’s do a bench press,’” Black said. “That’s not working out. I’m talking about high intensity workouts. When is the last time you worked out and you ended up lying down on a filthy floor, thankful for the opportunity to lie down? That’s a workout, and that’s what I show the students.” The 12-mile ruck march is just one of the items on the task list of “Infantry High Physical Demands.” The items on the list must be checked off before a soldier can join the infantry. But despite the difficulty of the ruck march, carrying 45-pound ammo boxes, or dragging a 268-pound person 15 meters, it is a much simpler task that causes the most problems for the newest generation of soldiers: throwing a grenade. It turns out that, in an era when youth play on smartphones instead of

throwing a ball around with friends, the seemingly simple task of throwing a one-pound grenade 35 meters is causing the most failures, Snyder said. “In this computer generation, there are a lot of people who come through who have never thrown before; they’ve never thrown a one-pound anything,” Snyder said. “So a lot of people struggle with that. We take a lot of time to help them just with the basic mechanics of how to throw something. Some of them grasp it, and some of them don’t. That one is our biggest thing that knocks people out.”


Photos by Jonathan Koester, NCO Journal



wenty citizen-soldiers and airmen from the 10th Civil Support Team (CST) and 10 citizen-airmen from the 242nd Combat Communications Squadron (CBCS) supported the 58th Presidential Inauguration in Washington, D.C. Washington state soldiers and airmen augmented the Joint Task Force District of Columbia (JTF-DC), supporting events such as the opening ceremony, swearing-in ceremony, inaugural speech and parade, as well as follow-on events that transpired. Members of the Washington National Guard’s 10th Civil Support Team, based on Camp Murray, Washington, conducted radiation detection in and around the National Mall. The team identifies and assesses suspected Weapons of Mass Destruction hazards, advises civilian responders on appropriate actions through on-site testing and expert consultation, and 20 - EVERGREEN MAGAZINE VOL.III // ISSUE 2

Photos by Rob Hotakainen

facilitates the arrival of additional state and federal military forces. The team performs similar duties during every Seattle Seahawks home game and many major events in the Pacific Northwest.

Photos by Sgt. 1st Class Jason Kriess

Members of the 242nd Combat Communications Squadron (CBCS) based on Fairchild Air Force Base in Eastern Washington, supported the District of Columbia Department of Transportation and provided communications capabilities to their tactical operations center. The 242nd CBCS can rapidly deploy, operate and maintain command and control, communications and computer systems from anywhere in the world. During the 2015 wildfires, the unit utilized the Joint Incident Site Communications Capability (JISCC), providing critical communication support in remote areas of the state Photo by Spc. Ryan Scott

Photo by Spc. Ryan Scott



Story by Capt. Martha Nigrelle

“There are times throughout our lives where we are emotionally inspired by someone’s strength and courage. For me it has been a 10 year old boy and his family from Texas named Rowan. Rowan was born with a rare blood disease and spent over 1300 days of his short life in a hospital, to include Seattle Children’s.” - Chief Master Sgt. Trisha Almond, Senior Enlisted Leader


n March 27, 2015, the Texas Army National Guard came together and conducted an honorary enlistment ceremony for an eight-year-old boy battling a rare disorder, whose dream was to become a soldier. The significance of the ceremony is important to mention, because when you enlist in the Texas Army National Guard, you become part of a family. And on that day, Rowan became part of our family. “He’s one of us now,” said Command Sgt. Maj. Mark Weedon, the command senior enlisted leader of the Texas Military Department to Rowan’s mom, as they 22 - EVERGREEN MAGAZINE VOL.III // ISSUE 2


were getting ready to leave that day. “So please, keep in touch. We want to know how he is doing.” When we met him, Rowan needed a bone marrow transplant and was scheduled to get one later that year. But there were some bumps in the road and a year later, he still didn’t have a match. Upon finding this out, many of my fellow Guardsmen came to the same conclusion – we should have a bone marrow drive. Maybe one of us could be the match for Rowan. So we did the research, asked our leadership and set a date. In the meantime, Rowan was cleared for an experimental bone marrow transplant

with what’s called a “half-match” with someone who is a perfect half-match because the recipient has half of their DNA. It is risky because as you are trying to do everything possible to convince your body to accept the transplant, you also have to figure out how to protect your body from the half that isn’t a match. As we planned our bone marrow drive, Rowan and his family flew to Seattle to go through the transplant process. Then we found out that things weren’t going so well. So what does a good noncommissioned officer do when one of his soldiers is out of the fight? He checks on the soldier. He speaks to the family. He lends his support in any way possible. And that’s exactly what our Command

Members of the Washington National Guard visit Rowan during a trip to Seattle Children’s Hospital in December. (Photo Courtesy of Carrie Windham)


Sergeant Major did – he called the family, he checked on Rowan and he even phoned a friend – the Command Senior Enlisted Leader for the Washington Military Department and asked her to send a few Guardsmen to the Seattle Children’s Hospital to check on Rowan, on behalf of Texas. Right away, our friends in Washington stepped up. They visited Rowan and experienced the same thing that we did – Rowan is awesome. So they asked if they could

vice member who got swabbed, and each individual involved in the planning, organizing and processing of the bone marrow drive,” said Carrie Windham, Rowan’s mother. “We are deeply touched.” A few days later our friends in Washington went back to Seattle to check on Rowan for us, and even though he was unconscious, they spent the day by his side. “These men and women drove over an

“No matter how bad his day was going, no matter what new tube was hooked up to him, the first thing he did was thank us for our service. That’s just the kid he was,” said Spc. Tyler Main come again, and promised they would be back in a few days. The next day Rowan slipped into a coma, and medically speaking, things got pretty bad. This was what was happening when the bone marrow drive kicked off. When word got out that Rowan wasn’t doing well, Texas Guardsmen showed up. They showed up and put themselves on the national registry – if they couldn’t be the match for Rowan, maybe they could be the match for someone like him. Even Maj. Gen. John Nichols, the adjutant general of Texas, came by wanting to donate and leave Rowan a note. Photo 24 by -Sgt. 1st Class Malcolm McClendon EVERGREEN MAGAZINE VOL.III // ISSUE 2

“We want to personally thank each ser-

hour to get here, brought him amazing tokens of their support that he will cherish forever and spent their valuable time getting to know us,” Windham said. “What they did for him, though he wasn’t aware at the time, was remarkable.” When I joined the Army in 2005, one of the first things I learned was the importance of a battle buddy-it’s family. The men and women who fight alongside you become your family, and if you lose one, their family becomes your family. To my fellow Guardsmen in Texas and Washington, thank you for showing us what it means to stand by a fellow soldier no matter what – it is an honor to serve alongside you.

Dec. 15, 2016 A message from the Washington National Guard Senior Enlisted Leader: “In October I received a phone call from the Texas National Guard Senior Enlisted Leader asking if we could provide Rowan and his family some support as he was an honorary Texas National Guard member. Immediately we sent Photo Courtesy of Carrie Windham a team up there to see what we could do for him and his family, and throughout the last few Rowan passed away last night, surroundmonths we would travel to Seattle to visit with ed by his family. We all know he is in a far Rowan on a regular basis. greater place, and I know personally I will Rowan inspired all of us, his spirit was amaz- NEVER forget the lessons this 10 year old ing as if he knew he was put on this earth to boy and his family taught us. Please keep teach each us a lesson in life... life is too short Rowan’s family in your thoughts and prayers and don’t let the little things become the big as they travel back to Texas...and remember things, concentrate on the important stuff, hug life can be short so don’t get wrapped up in your family, cherish your children and every- worrying about the small things and hug thing happens for a reason. those you love, as none of us are promised tomorrow.”

Photo by Sgt. 1st Class Malcolm McClendon MIL.WA.GOV VOL III // ISSUE 2 - 25

The Outstanding

Photos by TSgt Michael Brown 26 - EVERGREEN MAGAZINE VOL.III // ISSUE 2

Airmen of the Year 2016 WASHINGTON Air National Guard Outstanding Airman of the Year Senior Airman Jeremiah M. Lefor

2016 WASHINGTON Air National Guard Base Honor Guard Member of the Year Sgt. Yves Truchon, Canadian

2016 WASHINGTON Air National Guard Recruiter of the Year Tech. Sgt Trevor B. Volack

2016 WASHINGTON Air National Guard Outstanding Non-Commissioned Officer of the Year Tech Sgt. Rivanita A. Noyes

2016 WASHINGTON Air National Guard Base Honor Guard Manager of the Year Staff Sgt. Swawn M. Modjtabai

2016 WASHINGTON Air National Guard Unit of the Year 141 Logistics Readiness Squadron

2016 WASHINGTON Air National Guard Outstanding Senior Non-Commissioned Officer of the Year Senior Master Sgt Jason W. Witts

2016 WASHINGTON Air National Guard First Sergeant of the Year Master Sgt. Paul R. Sety

2016 WASHINGTON Air National Guard Outstanding Company Grade Officer of the Year Capt. Zachary D. Buckallew

2016 WASHINGTON Air National Guard Outstanding Civilian of the Year Ms. Kimberly D. Burke


Around the Department

OLYMPIA, Wash. --Members of the Washington National Guard were on hand to celebrate the inauguration of the state Commander in Chief Jay Inslee at the Governor’s Inaugural Ball.

Photos by Spc. Photos by Staff Sgt. Virginia M. Owens Tyler Main 28 - EVERGREEN MAGAZINE VOL.III // ISSUE 2

Two UH-60 Black Hawk helicopters from Golf Company, 1st Battalion (General Support), 168th Aviation Regiment, Washington National Guard, pass by Mount Hood in Oregon as they make their way to the National Training Center, Fort Irwin, California, January 6, 2017. The air MEDEVAC unit is attached to the 1st Stryker Brigade, 25th Infantry Division for their annual training at the National Training Center. (U.S. Army National Guard photo by Spc. Perry Gilchrist)

Around the Department


Around the Department

Washington National Guard soldiers and airmen with the 10th Civil Support Team conducted a joint training exercise with first responders from Joint Base Lewis-McChord as well as Thurston, Pierce and King counties. Crews were training for a scenario in which some type of hazardous material was making hundreds of people sick at the Capital Mall. Crews trained on how to find and identify the hazardous material and then decontaminate the mall and make sure it was safe for people to enter.

Photos by Capt. Photos by Staff Sgt. Virginia M. Owens Joseph Siemandel


Around the Department

The 2016 Operation Ham Grenade began when 30 members from the Association of the United States Army (AUSA), Air Force Association (AFA), and Pierce Military and Business Alliance delivered 20 complimentary holiday hams to Western Air Defense Sector junior service members as a way to show their appreciation and support. The Captain Meriwether Lewis Chapter of the AUSA worked with more than 60 local businesses that donated time, energy and money organizing hams for the service members. WADS was just one of many stops where Operation Ham Grenade delivered hams throughout Joint Base Lewis-McChord and to Washington State Guardsmen on Camp Murray.

Photos by Kimberly D. Burke MIL.WA.GOV VOL III // ISSUE 2 - 31

Around the Department In preparation for the upcoming National Guard biathlon season, Capt. Brendan Thompson and Lt. Col. Josh Barrow represented the Washington National Guard Biathlon Team during a ski race in Park City, Utah. In addition to the race and ski training, soldiers from several states are participating in biathlon officiating training at Soldier Hollow, Utah, to include Spc. Andrew Traciak from the Washington National Guard. Courtesy photo of Lt. Col. Josh Barrow 32 - EVERGREEN MAGAZINE VOL.III // ISSUE 2

Video Feature

On Monday, Nov. 7, 2016, the Seattle Seahawks held their Salute to Service game in recognition of service members past and present. The Washington National Guard’s 66th Theater Aviation Command conducted a flyover with two UH-60 Black Hawk helicopters, one carrying the U.S. flag and the other carrying the “12th fan” flag as a way to show the relationship between the guard and the community.

Photo by Capt. Joseph Siemandal (left) and Spc. Tyler Main (right) MIL.WA.GOV VOL III // ISSUE 2 - 33


LEADING the Way New deputy director brings enthusiasm to Washington EMD


Jason Marquiss New Washington EMD Director

ason Marquiss says his high energy personality comes from a career where he’s had good jobs, great supervisors and a team that feeds off his enthusiasm.

ion Commander, the director of Emergency Services and Chief of Police for Fort Carson, the sixth largest U.S. Army military installation, located in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

Now, Marquiss is bringing his talents to the Washington Emergency Management Division as the new assistant director, serving under Director Robert Ezelle.

“I bring to the table a strong sense of team,” Marquiss said. “As an individual, it’s never going to be about me or my personal feelings. It’s going to be about what’s in the best interest of this organization and what’s in the best collective efforts for the larger group.”

“I’ve had some great bosses and they were very motivated, very enthusiastic,” Marquiss says. “You got motivated just by being around them and they really cared about what they were doing. In previous positions, I’ve always thought that I’m there to make my team successful, my team isn’t there to make me successful. When you buy into that and truly believe that to be the case, it’s very easy to be enthusiastic because that’s what motivated you to do your job well.” Marquiss (pronounced Mar-kwiss) comes to the Washington Emergency Management Division as a retired U.S. Army Military Police Officer, having served nearly 24 years on active duty. He retired as a lieutenant colonel, where he served as the 759th Military Police Battal34 - EVERGREEN MAGAZINE VOL.III // ISSUE 2

Story by Steven Friederich

Marquiss says he enlisted in the Army in January 1993. He explains his father was in the Air Force and then became a career sheriff’s deputy. “He did everything from patrol to minor crimes like theft to major crimes,” Marquiss said. “I think my sense of public service came from my father. Never in my wildest thoughts did I think I’d go into the military but it changed my life. I was only going to do five years, but the assignments I had led me on a path and opened up some doors for me and motivated me to becoming an officer. Almost 24 years later, I have all these great experiences behind me.”

At Fort Carson, he was a battalion commander, where he led an 800-plus soldier organization comprised of seven subordinate units to include tactical military police, law enforcement detachments and a military working dog detachment. At the same time, he was also the Director of Emergency Services, leading all law enforcement, fire and emergency services, security and access control and E911/ Emergency Communications Center operations. For about a year, he also served as the Chief of Police, where he oversaw both civilian and military police. He says his job working with both military and civilians has definitely prepared him for his role at the Washington Military Department, which also has military and civilian components. “This is my first pure civilian position and I cannot think of a better organization to come into with the skillset that I’m leaving the Army with than with the state EMD,” Marquiss said. “When I looked for my next profession, and I learned more about the EMD, when I understood the mission, I turned to my wife and said, ‘This is where I want to work.’” As the assistant director of the Washington Emergency Management Division, he’ll help lead the agency’s unit managers and will serve as a disaster manager during the state’s emergencies.

Marquiss said he has experience working wildfire response in Colorado in recent years, something he thinks will prepare him for potential wildfire dangers in Washington state. He says he looks forward to understanding other threats the state faces in the future. Marquiss lives in Ashford with his wife, an avid climber, who has summited Denali in Alaska. The closeness to Mount Rainier has been a treat for both of them as they explore the region. “We love to get outdoors as much as we can,” he said. “In her words, there’s never bad weather, just inappropriate clothing. You dress for the part and I try to take that with everything that I do.” He said he also loves to golf and especially enjoys building his own golf clubs. Marquiss is a graduate of Park University and holds a Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice Administration and from Webster University, where he earned a Master of Arts in Business and Organizational Security Management. “Not only am I looking forward to being in leadership here at EMD, I’m here to build relationships across the state, including our local partners,” he said.





Contributors Sgt. 1st Class Jason Kriess Sgt. Matthew Sissel Steven Friederich Communications Director Karina Shagren State Public Affairs Officer Capt. Joseph F. Siemandel Chief Editor Spc. Tyler Main Copy Editor Virginia Owens

Spc. Brianne Kim Kimberly Burke Chief Master Sgt. Trisha Almond Jonathan Koester Spc. Perry Gilchrist Sgt. Kory Heptner Jennifer Picardo Spc. Ryan Scott Rob Hotakainen Capt. Martha Nigrelle Carrie Windham Sgt. 1st Class Malcolm McClendon Ltc. Josh Barrow TSgt. Michael Brown


Photo by Sgt. Kory Heptner

Evergreen Magazine- Winter 2017  

Inside: A closer look at the changes to the 81st Brigade, Washington Youth Academy graduates 2000th Cadet, New Deputy Director brings change...

Evergreen Magazine- Winter 2017  

Inside: A closer look at the changes to the 81st Brigade, Washington Youth Academy graduates 2000th Cadet, New Deputy Director brings change...