By Eric KowalSeptember 16, 2008
PICATINNY ARSENAL, N.J. - Picatinny officials welcomed the director of the Joint Staff for the New Jersey National Guard, along with several other high-ranking officials to the installation, Sept. 5
Brig. Gen. Frank W. Dulfer, who also serves as the deputy commander, Joint Task Force-Military Support to Civil Authority, said his main purpose for the visit to Picatinny was to see what type of capabilities the installation has to support the New Jersey National Guard.
Along for the visit were Brig. Gen. John M. Nunn, assistant Adjutant General, Col. Anthony Formica, commanding officer of the Joint Training and Training Development Center, Col. Nick Chimienti, incoming G-3, and Col. James Grant, chief of staff for the Joint Force Headquarters.
The tour, led by Kurt McNeeley, chief of Warfighter Central here, started with a viewing of the tree memorial tribute to New Jersey's fallen heroes. Of the 119 fallen heroes memorialized at Picatinny, five were state residents assigned to the New Jersey National Guard. Other Guard members named and memorialized have ties to New Jersey, but were not state residents.
The group then proceeded to the Armament Research, Development and Engineering Center's Emergency Operations Center where staff members provided overviews of the Joint Munitions and Lethality Life Cycle Management Command, ARDEC and the EOC.
Later in the day, the group visited the Homeland Defense Technology Center and viewed first hand the training facilities used in the Tactics and Weapons Employment Course offered at the installation. Other outside agencies have used the facility for training purposes as well.
TWEC is a week-long course hosted by Warfighter Central that gives engineers a little taste of what it is like to be in the military. Students endure a variety of training tactics from drill movements to land navigation so they have an understanding of how they can better serve the warfighter.
Dr. Floyd Ribe, director of the HDTC, said that the area couples Homeland Defense and Security technology development with "comprehensive and integrated training scenarios in a realistic environment." He explained that the HDTC provides this environment for the joint training of active-duty, Reserve and National Guard Soldiers as well as local, state and federal personnel.
"This relationship between technology development and training provides immediate end-users feedback to the developers at Picatinny, thus shortening the development cycle," he added.
The tour wrapped up with a first-hand look at the Rapid Entry Vehicles here. McNeely expressed to Dulfer that ARDEC would like to assist in familiarizing NJNG Soldiers with training on the vehicles.
The REV's intended purpose is for use in crowd control and rescue-squad actions when nonlethal intervention is the goal. The REV was announced as one of the Army's Greatest Inventions in 2006.
McNeely's offer was an example of how both sides can benefit from a cohesive operation: Soldiers benefit by training at Picatinny facilities, while the Picatinny science and engineering workforce receive first-hand accounts of use of Picatinny products from Soldiers returning from theater.
Currently there are about 3,000 NJNG members deployed in support of the global war on terror. Dulfer said that number is about half the men and women who serve in the New Jersey National Guard.