Kentucky Guardsman Moves to Capital to Support Commonwealth
History of Sgt. Jesse Elbouab, 133rd Mobile Public Affairs Detachment
FRANKFORT, Ky. — Guard servicemen can typically hold multiple positions within the organization throughout their career, and for the commander of Joint Force Headquarters, it’s no different. His career started twenty years ago in Missouri and doesn’t seem to be running out of steam anytime soon.
Major Michael Hart raised his right hand in July 2000, enlisting in the Missouri National Guard as an interior electrician. Before enlisting, he took his time to weigh his options, considering his goals and needs before deciding guardsmanship was his best option.
“I knew I wanted to go to school – it was the most important thing to me at the time,” Hart said. “I also knew I wanted to be in the military as an officer. I went with the guard so I could focus on school and continue to have a civilian career while earning benefits that were important to me. “
Hart served the Missouri Army Guard for six years before moving to the state Air Guard as a biomedical equipment technician. Ultimately, his civilian career landed Hart at the Boone Center, setting up a flight simulator for training Kentucky Guard pilots.
While working at the flight facility, Hart met and befriended aviator Stephen Martin, who was a young captain at the time, who encouraged him to move from Missouri to Kentucky.
“You drive five hours for drill in Missouri, and you want to be an officer. Why not do that here in Kentucky?” Hart remembered Martin talking to him. “I thought it wasn’t a bad idea. So in August 2011, I was commissioned through the accelerated OCS program thanks to Lt. Col. Martin.”
After commissioning, Hart was transferred to the 198th MP as the Battalion Intelligence Officer. He continued to serve in various roles with the 149th MEB until his deployment to Al Asad Air Base, Iraq in 2019. Recently, he served on COVID-19 orders while commanding Headquarters joint forces.
However, he is preparing to embark on one of his most common missions to date.
The Army Congressional Scholars Program is a 44-month program that includes pursuing a master’s degree in legislative affairs at George Washington University in Washington D.C., and serving on the staff of a congressman, and the use of the General Staff of the Army in a congressional related duty post.
Hart has been accepted into the 2023 course which will officially begin in May this year.
“It was a very long process,” Hart said. “A lot of writing and the package required about fifteen documents.”
Although the application process is rigorous and the selection process is highly selective, seats are reserved only for the best and brightest leaders across the country. Of the twenty seats available, only three went to National Guard candidates nationwide.
Before starting the fellowship, Hart must complete the Army’s Intermediate Education Course (ILE). This school is necessary for the current major to be promoted to lieutenant colonel. The four-month school is continuing the program it will begin in May.
As part of this tenure, Hart will be at the forefront of conversations that have shaped the future of the Guard since its inception.
“Part of this scholarship is to work on the staff of a congresswoman or congresswoman,” Hart said. “One of the main things I’m looking forward to is seeing day-to-day operations at this level, as a staff member; and developing an understanding of how the organization works at the highest level.”
“Plus, working in the Legislative Office of the National Guard Bureau,” he adds. “Really, where ‘the money meets the Guard,’ it’s an amazing experience to say, ‘wow, this is where it all is.”
Over the past few years, Kentucky Guard leaders have taken their lives to make DC their temporary home in support of the Commonwealth mission. As Hart completes ILE in preparation for the next chapter of his career, it’s clear that his work ethic, opportunity-seeking and voice will be critical to the future of the organization for years to come.
“There are a lot of relationships to build there,” Hart concluded. I’ll come back with knowledge and connections – it’s always a great thing for Kentucky.”
|Date posted:||16.02.2022 13:25|
|Site:||FRANKFURT, KY, USA|
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