NGB senior enlisted advisor meets with Va. Guard Airmen, Soldiers

Lt. Col. James A. Caruso (left), the Virginia National Guard State Aviation Officer, briefs Chief Master Sgt. Mitchell O. Brush (center), the Senior Enlisted Advisor to the Chief of the National Guard Bureau, and Command Sgt. Maj. Dennis Green (right), the Virginia National Guard Senior Enlisted Leader, April 25, 2014,at the Army Aviation Support Facility  in Sandston, Va. Brush met with senior leaders and junior servicemembers throughout the state April 25-26 to learn about the Virginia Guard, discuss the current state of the National Guard, and address any issues or concerns they may have. (Photo by Master Sgt. A.J. Coyne, Virginia Guard Public Affairs)

Lt. Col. James A. Caruso (left), the Virginia National Guard State Aviation Officer, briefs Chief Master Sgt. Mitchell O. Brush (center), the Senior Enlisted Advisor to the Chief of the National Guard Bureau, and Command Sgt. Maj. Dennis Green (right), the Virginia National Guard Senior Enlisted Leader, April 25, 2014,at the Army Aviation Support Facility in Sandston, Va. Brush met with senior leaders and junior servicemembers throughout the state April 25-26 to learn about the Virginia Guard, discuss the current state of the National Guard, and address any issues or concerns they may have. (Photo by Master Sgt. A.J. Coyne, Virginia Guard Public Affairs)

SANDSTON, Va. — Chief Master Sgt. Mitchell O. Brush, the senior enlisted advisor to the Chief of the National Guard, visited Virginia National Guard Airmen and Soldiers April 25-26, 2014, in Sandston, Hampton and Virginia Beach to learn about the Virginia Guard, discuss the current state of the National Guard, and address any issues or concerns servicemembers may have.

Brush also provided insight to Airmen and Soldiers on several major issues, according to Command Sgt. Maj. Dennis Green, the Virginia National Guard senior enlisted leader.

“He approached these concerns with passionate dialogue, giving clear expectation for the way ahead,” he said.

As the Senior Enlisted Advisor for the National Guard Bureau, Brush advises Gen. Frank J. Grass, the Chief, National Guard Bureau, on all enlisted matters affecting training, effective utilization, health of the force, and enlisted professional development.

Following an office call with Maj. Gen. Daniel E. Long, the Adjutant General of Virginia, and Green, Brush received that week’s commander’s update brief in the Joint Operation Center in Sandston.

Chief Master Sgt. Mitchell O. Brush, the Senior Enlisted Advisor to the Chief of the National Guard Bureau, speaks to Virginia National Guard Airmen and Soldiers at a town hall meeting April 25, 2014, at the Virginia Guard headquarters in Sandston, Va. Among the topics Brush addresses was the importance of the National Guard and the role every Airmen and Soldier plays in spreading the word about the Guard’s mission and capabilities. (Photo by Master Sgt. A.J. Coyne, Virginia Guard Public Affairs)

Chief Master Sgt. Mitchell O. Brush, the Senior Enlisted Advisor to the Chief of the National Guard Bureau, speaks to Virginia National Guard Airmen and Soldiers at a town hall meeting April 25, 2014, at the Virginia Guard headquarters in Sandston, Va. Among the topics Brush addresses was the importance of the National Guard and the role every Airmen and Soldier plays in spreading the word about the Guard’s mission and capabilities. (Photo by Master Sgt. A.J. Coyne, Virginia Guard Public Affairs)

“There’s probably not a state that does ‘joint’ better than Virginia, and that’s great to see,” he said.

Brush then held a town hall meeting in Sandston with Virginia Army and Air Guard noncommissioned officers where he discussed the importance of the National Guard and the role every Airmen and Soldier plays in spreading the word about the Guard’s mission and capabilities.

Brush spent many years as a traditional Air Guard Airman while working as a state trooper in Montana, so he said he understands many of the challenges facing traditional Guard Soldiers and Airmen.

He stressed the importance of communicating and staying engaged with Guard personnel throughout the month.

“We need to get back to face-to-face communication,” Brush said. “We need to learn how to talk to each other again.”

Brush also discussed resiliency and perseverance among Guard members.

“We have to teach people how to be resilient and how to handle a ‘no,’” he explained. “We also need to talk about the saves as much as the losses. And there’s a lot of saving going on.”

When it comes to informing the public about the Guard, it’s on Guard members themselves to spread the word, Brush explained.

“I need you to recruit every single day,” Brush added. “We know the kind of people we need in the National Guard and it’s our job to make sure that’s who we have.

“Tell the story. Be proud of what you do. If Gen. Grass is proud of the National Guard, you should be too.”

Following the town hall meeting, Brush traveled to the nearby Virginia Guard Army Aviation Support Facility where he discussed the Virginia Army Guard’s aviation capabilities and force structure. He then met with 15 Airmen and Soldiers for lunch where he again discussed some of the issues facing the National Guard.

On April 26, Brush met with senior leaders and Airmen from the 192nd Fighter Wing at Langley Air Force Base in Hampton and the 203rd RED HORSE Squadron at Camp Pendleton in Virginia Beach.

That evening Brush wrapped up his visit when he served as the keynote speaker at the Virginia National Guard Enlisted Association Conference in Virginia Beach.

“He demonstrated genuine interest in the strategic, operational, tactical and individual aspects of the Virginia Air and Army Guard’s functional enterprises for the National Guard,” said Green. “He gave Virginia his valuable time and is a true warrior providing excellent value to our armed services and nation.”


Photos: NGB Senior Enlisted Advisor visits Va. Guard Airmen, Soldiers- April 25, 2012