ROCHESTER, Minn. (AP) — Minnesota’s new commander in chief is the featured speaker at a state National Guard event.

Gov. Mark Dayton was on tap Saturday to give the keynote address at the National Guard Association of Minnesota formal dinner in Rochester.

READ MORE: St. Paul Students Plan Walkout Over COVID Safety

The association is holding a three-day conference.

READ MORE: Minnesota Weather: Tuesday Brings Big, Blustery Temperature Swing

As a U.S. senator, Dayton helped start a program for assisting deployed soldiers and their families. Previous Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty was a fixture at Guard events.

MORE NEWS: 'Better Safe Than Sorry': New COVID Rules Begin This Week

(© Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)