Eight new state committee chairpersons for the Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR) were sworn in here today by Charles L. Cragin, principal deputy assistant secretary of Defense for Reserve Affairs.
The new appointees are F. Wilson Myers, Alabama; Robert A. Lame, California; Frederick I. Fletemeyer, Colorado; Thomas H. Bowen, Mississippi; Jorge Arzola, Puerto Rico; James P. McHugh, Wyoming; David S. Sibley, Georgia; and Frank L. Brewster, West Virginia.
They join a team of 54 ESGR committee chairs, one in each state, territory and the District of Columbia. The state chairs provide leadership to 4,200 ESGR volunteers, nationwide, who work to gain support from the civilian employers of National Guard and Reserve personnel. Each appointee previously has served as a volunteer on the state/territory ESGR committees and was nominated by search committees within each jurisdiction prior to their selection.
"The state chairs are vital members of our Total Force team," said Cragin. "With their business and military experience, they help the Department of Defense educate employers about the requirements of Reserve service, and they educate military leaders about the impact that military service is having on the employer community."
While in Washington, D.C., the appointees will participate in an intensive orientation program to prepare them for their duties.
The National Committee for Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (NCESGR) was chartered in 1972 to minimize conflicts between part-time military duties and full-time civilian career responsibilities. At that time, the U.S. armed forces were transitioning to an all-volunteer force.
"More than half of the nation's military strength resides in the National Guard and Reserve," said Cragin. "And as we have increasingly called upon our Guard and Reserve forces, we have been increasingly calling upon their employers. The state ESGR committees are a vital means to ensure that we never take the employers for granted."
For more information, call Army National Guard Lt. Col. Terry Jones at (703) 695-3620, or visit the Reserve Affairs web site at http://dod.mil/ra/ and the NCESGR web site at http://www.esgr.org .