Indiana Army National Guard Master Sgt. Zachery Hackett, a 38th Infantry Division senior infantry sergeant from Fort Wayne, Indiana, supports Task Force Spartan as the future operations noncommissioned officer in charge.
Hackett, one of more than 600 National Guard soldiers who departed the Hoosier State in May, helps support the U.S. Army Central task force in southwest Asia.
"The operations here are complex, and coordinating with foreign military partners with different approaches to planning challenges us to work differently," said Hackett.
Approximately 10,000 U.S. troops serve under the 38th-led task force, a multicomponent organization made up of active Army and National Guard units and rounded out by U.S. Army Reserve support units.
Task Force Spartan maintains a U.S. military posture in the region to strengthen defense relationships, build partner capacity and deter regional aggression.
"The biggest challenges we face are the management and planning of major events in a 15- to 45-day time frame," said Hackett. "This can be challenging because of the size of formations that fall under us."
But Hackett brings years of experience to assist in solving these challenges.
Hackett, a combat veteran, previously served two tours in Iraq, provided disaster relief in Mississippi for Hurricane Katrina and helped out his own state during numerous snow emergencies in Indiana.
Hackett also trained with the Slovakian military on two separate occasions, focusing on defensive operations, tactics and marksmanship.
He also brings experience in joint military relations from his years of service in the 76th Infantry Brigade Combat Team.
"I feel a sense of duty to my country and my soldiers and want to provide a good quality of life for my family," said Hackett. "I just passed my 20 year mark on September 29, 2019, and plan on serving as long as the Army will allow."
For now, Hackett will continue to help the task force build up the military relationships with regional partners that help protect America's assets and allies in the Middle East.