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September 12, 08

NEWS / Alaska National Guard Adjutant General Promoted


September 8, 2008, Camp Denali, Alaska – Before a formation of Alaska Air and Army National Guard members, the Alaska National Guard’s top leader was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant General yesterday in front of the Guard’s headquarters building on Fort Richardson.

Lt. Gen. (Alaska) Craig E. Campbell, the adjutant general of the Alaska National Guard and commissioner of the Department of Military & Veterans Affairs, received his third star, signifying Governor Sarah Palin’s support of the Guard and her commitment to reinforcing the cooperation between federal and state military assets.

Palin took the opportunity to promote Campbell ahead of any pending emergency that may occur with the upcoming fall storm season. This allows Alaska to have more of a say in times of state disasters.

“This is about Alaskans serving Alaskans. The promotion is a statement that the Alaska National Guard is the state military force responsible for responding to state issues, at the direction of the Governor,” Governor Palin said. “The decision to promote the Adjutant General to Lieutenant General is based on a fundamental states’-rights stance, for which Alaska has a strong historical position.”

This issue gained momentum with governors following Hurricane Katrina in 2005, when the Department of Defense pushed a change in federal law that authorized the President of the United States to mobilize National Guard members to federal service in response to emergencies, without the consent of the governor.

The National Governors Association and the Adjutants General Association of the United States were unanimously opposed to this change, and the following year Congress reversed the law. Concurrently, Alaska Statutes were changed to permit the governor to promote the Adjutant General to the state rank of Lieutenant General specifically for state service.

Campbell was pinned with his third star by his daughter Amanda Rauckhorst and wife, Anne Marie Campbell. Lt. Gov. Sean Parnell was also in attendance and spoke on behalf of Gov. Palin about the importance of the Alaska National Guard in securing the state.

“The action of promoting the Adjutant General to Lieutenant General (Alaska) in one way serves to strengthen the concept that the federal and state forces are co-equal partners in providing support to the state of Alaska,” Campbell said. “It is also a positive statement by Governor Palin that the Adjutant General, as a senior state official and cabinet member of a state entity, correctly relates to the senior appointed federal officials in Alaska, when supporting the citizens of this great state.”

Campbell will only wear the rank of Lieutenant General when he is in service to the state. His federal rank will remain Major General. This state promotion carries no financial benefit to Campbell. When serving in state status, the Adjutant General receives commissioner pay and benefits. When serving in active-duty status (federal), the Adjutant General is paid under the federally recognized rank of Major General.

Campbell now joins the rank of the adjutant general from the Texas National Guard, which currently has a lieutenant general as its top officer. Georgia and Maryland have also had adjutants general as lieutenants general in the past.
http://www.gov.state.ak.us/news.php?id=1449

 




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