Minnesota National Guard Hosts International Women’s Day Event

MEDIA ADVISORY: For Immediate Release
March 7, 2023

ST. PAUL, Minn. – Tomorrow, the Minnesota National Guard will host an International
Women’s Day event in St. Paul to celebrate the accomplishments of the females serving in its

“I am proud to be a member of the Minnesota National Guard because I am part of an
organization that celebrates women’s achievements and increases the visibility of the
opportunities for women leaders across the organization,” said Army Command Sergeant Major
Stephen Whitehead, Minnesota National Guard’s Command Senior Enlisted Advisor.

The Guard has changed significantly since its inception in 1856. Today, the Minnesota National
Guard is nearly 13,000 strong – Minnesotans who have put on the uniform and sworn to defend
our State and Nation. The first women to enter the Minnesota Guard joined in 1973, and there
were three. Today, Minnesota National Guard consists of 21.2 percent females.

There have been many firsts for women since 1973, such as Audrey Miller being the first woman
to commission as a second lieutenant through the Minnesota Military Academy at Camp Ripley
in 1976. The adjutant general recently appointed Air Force Command Chief Master Sergeant
Lisa Erikson as the Minnesota National Guard’s Command Senior Enlisted Leader. The CSEL is
an advisor to the Guard’s adjutant general and serves as the senior representative for enlisted
views and concerns. This appointment is the second time a female has held this position in the
Minnesota Guard’s history.

Little Falls resident and artist Charles Kapsner’s most recent piece ‘Women on Guard,” will be
on display. The four by five-foot painting showcases the multi-layered, multi-modal identities of
five diverse women from the Minnesota National Guard and their roles aside from the Guard.
Three of the five female service members will be present and available for interviews.
Editor’s Note: Media members are invited to attend the event on Wednesday, March 8, at 11
a.m., located at the Cedar St. Armory, 600 Cedar St., St. Paul, Minn. Media can RSVP to Lt. Col.
Kristen Augé at 952-913-5979 or kristen.l.auge.mil@army.mil.

About the Minnesota National Guard –
Established in 1856 and headquartered in St. Paul, the Minnesota National Guard has more than
13,000 Soldiers and Airmen who serve in 58 communities across the state. The Citizen-Soldiers
and Airmen of the Minnesota National Guard are ‘Always Ready’ to fight the nation’s wars,
protect the country, respond to state emergencies, and contribute to local communities. For more
information about the Minnesota National Guard, visit https://MinnesotaNationalGuard.ng.mil.