VICENZA, Italy – The U.S. Army Southern European Task Force, Africa (SETAF-AF) will co-host a Warriors Corner presentation titled ‘State Partnership Program: Twenty Years of Making a Difference in Africa’ during the Association of the United States Army’s Annual Meeting and Exposition Oct. 9-11 in Washington, D.C.
The National Guard’s State Partnership Program has been successfully building relations for 30 years and now includes 88 partnerships with 100 nations around the globe. There are currently 16 State Partnerships in Africa from 13 U.S. states and the District of Columbia.
Gen. Daniel Hokanson, Chief of the National Guard, will introduce the National Guard’s SPP Program. Maj. Gen. Todd Wasmund, SETAF-AF Commanding General, will discuss the Army’s support U. S. Africa Command's campaign in Africa and where it interfaces with SPPs in Africa, before turning over to Maj. Gen. Alan Dohrmann, The Adjutant General for the North Dakota National Guard, state partner to Ghana, Benin and Togo to discuss his state’s individual partnership.
Lastly, Maj. Gen. Thomas Oppong-Peprah, Chief of Staff for the Ghana Army, will discuss partnering with both North Dakota and SETAF-AF.
The SPP evolved from a 1991 U.S. European Command decision to set up the Joint Contact Team Program in the Baltic Region with Reserve component Soldiers and Airmen. A subsequent National Guard Bureau proposal paired U.S. states with three nations emerging from the former Soviet Bloc and the SPP was born, becoming a key U.S. security cooperation tool, facilitating cooperation across all aspects of international civil-military affairs and encouraging people-to-people ties at the state level.
This cost-effective program is administered by the National Guard Bureau, guided by State Department foreign policy goals, and executed by the state adjutants general in support of combatant commander and U.S. Chief of Mission security cooperation objectives and Department of Defense policy goals.
Through SPP, the National Guard conducts military-to-military engagements in support of defense security goals but also leverages whole-of-society relationships and capabilities to facilitate broader interagency and corollary engagements spanning military, government, economic and social spheres.
The panel will be held Monday, Oct. 9 from 1430-1510 in the Army Exhibit in Exhibit Hall E at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center. The discussion will also be livestreamed on the SETAF-AF Facebook page and on DVIDS.