MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Gov. Mark Dayton appointed a familiar face to lead the Minnesota National Guard — Major General Jon Jensen will serve as the 31st Adjutant General of the Guard.
Jensen will replace retiring Major General Richard Nash who has served in that position for seven years. For the past six years, Major General Jon Jensen has served as Adjutant General Nash’s Chief of Staff. Gov. Dayton announced Wednesday afternoon Jensen will will take over when Nash retires in October.
“You will get my best,” Major General Jensen said. “I will work hard every single day to ensure that you have the resources and the support — both inside the organization and throughout the communities in Minnesota — to make sure you are prepared and always ready.”
Major General Jensen says readiness will be his number on priority. He will also focus on recruiting and retaining diverse and talented soldiers and airmen.
Jensen says the Minnesota National Guard is not as diverse as it should be.
“We are seeking all types of people to serve in our organization,” he said. “We are a very open organization, very tolerant and very inclusive organization, and we’ll continue to be that way going forward.”
Jensen says service should be open to everyone. He says he wants a consistent message from the top about transgender service members.
“We do have transgender soldiers in our formation that — under what is still the current policy — have come out and identified them as transgender,” he said. “We have supported them and we will continue to support them going forward.”
Major General Nash is still the adjutant general and until he departs, he’ll make sure Minnesota is ready if called upon to help the people of Houston.
Major General Jensen served as commander general of the Army National Guard 34th Red Bull infantry division as well as the Chief of Staff at the Guard’s joint headquarters. The switch in command comes as more than 500 members of Red Bulls prepare to go to Southwest Asia in the fall of 2018.