New Tennessee National Guard directorate assists families

New Tennessee National Guard directorate assists families

Posted: Monday, March 21, 2011 8:02 pm
By: NASHVILLE

NASHVILLE — Maj. Gen. Max Haston, Tennessee’s adjutant general, announced recently the creation of a new directorate within the Tennessee National Guard aimed at aiding National Guard families at every level.  
“The mission of the Military and Family Readiness Operations directorate is to provide guidance and implement long-lasting solutions to the needs of our Guard members and families,” Haston explained. “Although a number of programs have already been in effect, they are now combined with others and all fall under one umbrella.”
Director of the new department is Col. Patty Jones of Kingston Springs, veteran of 29 years in the military. She was the first female Tennessee National Guard company commander to lead a unit into war, commanding Dyersburg’s 269th MPs during Operation Desert Storm.
She deployed again in 2003 to Iraq. She was also the first female Battalion Commander in the Tennessee Guard, commanding the 168th MP Battalion which deployed during Hurricane Katrina. Additionally, her battalion was the Tennessee Army Guard’s first unit to provide security along the southwest border.
The bulk of the new directorate is located at state headquarters in Nashville but with elements across Tennessee. Some of its many programs include:
• Chaplain-supported guidance for service members and their families.
• Family Assistance Centers provide local assistance to service members and families.
• Youth programs provide local camps and activities for military youth of the Tennessee National Guard.
• Family Readiness Council provide for the need of National Guard families and assisting unit commanders in family readiness.
• Yellow Ribbon works hand-in-hand with family programs to ensure service members and families get information on services available throughout and following a deployment.
• Transition Assistance Advisor supports returning service men and women to assist with benefits, education assistance, employment and other issues.
• Personal and family counseling provides solution-based counseling on any challenge facing the service member and/or family.
• Personal financial counseling on financial issues include budget concerns, credit, debt management and investments.
• Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR) aids in increasing awareness of applicable re-employment laws and assists in resolving any conflicts between employers and service members as well as Employment Assistance Training.
• Military Funeral Honors render professional military funeral honors to all eligible veterans when requested by an authorized family member.   
• Army Survivor Outreach Services provide support and services after the Casualty Assistance Officer completes his/her role in assisting the family.

Published in The Messenger 3.21.11

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