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December 15, 2017


Legislative Update
Army Update
Army National Guard
Naval Services Update
Air Force Update
Coast Guard Update

Member Update
Military Life

Jobs on the Hill
Law Reviews

Legislative Update

President Signs $700 Billion 2018 NDAA

(Photo: White House)

President Donald Trump on Tuesday signed a massive $700 billion defense budget into law, leaving a fight ahead on how to pay for the plan.

The plan, known as the National Defense Authorization Act, increases budgetary caps and requires special legislative action to fund all the new priorities. Without it, the defense bill would trigger so-called sequestration, automatic, across-the-board spending cuts.

More so, Congress is running the government until Dec. 22 on a Continuing Resolution -- a temporary funding measure -- and has yet to agree on an overall budget, including military spending.

The 2018 fiscal year plan includes a 2.4 percent pay raise for servicemembers, increases the size of the military, funds new ships and aircrafts and authorizes new spending on missile defense. The budget also includes necessary retention pay and bonuses and covers costly repairs for two Navy ships involved recently in deadly crashes. READ MORE>

ROA Leads Effort to Highlight Reserve Components Impact in Congressional Continuing Resolution Debate

(Photo: Capitol Historic Society)

ROA added language to a Military Coalition (TMC) letter to members of the House and Senate strongly encouraging Congress to pass the Fiscal Year 2018 Defense Appropriations bill before funding expires on December 22, 2017.

The language specifically states that the National Guard and Reserve have had to cancel training needed to prepare for operational mission support under the current CR and that another CR will further strain active duty forces because they will not be able to be supplemented with the Reserve Component.

The TMC letter requests passage of a full defense budget by December 22, 2017 to adequately support the millions of service members, civilians, veterans, and military families who serve or have served our great nation.

Army Reserve Update

U.S. Army DCO Program Established for Cyber Mission Force

(Photo: U.S. Army)

The U.S. Army is officially launching a new program aimed at recruiting more cyber operators in order to fill existing gaps in the force. The service is implementing a new pilot program to directly commission civilians with technology and cybersecurity backgrounds as cyber operations officers who will provide support for the branch’s Cyber Mission Force teams.

The effort signals the urgency within the Army to recruit more technology-savvy operators as cyber operations gain significance in the U.S. military.

The program will allow programmers, web developers and others in technology fields to apply to be directly commissioned as an officer in U.S. Army Cyber. In order to apply, individuals must have at least four-year degrees in computer science or related tech fields, in addition to filling a set of other requirements.

The five-year pilot program will commission up to five cyber operations officers per year into the active component. After the first year, the program will expand to the Army National Guard and Army Reserve. READ MORE>

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Photos of Army Kids Still Needed for Museum Exhibit

Are you an Army kid, or know of an Army kid? The National Museum of the United States Army is collecting stories and photos for the Museum's "Growing Up Army" exhibit - a special place that will recognize and honor Army families through personal stories, photos, videos, and an interactive game. Submit your photos and story by clicking on the link below before December 31, 2017 and you might see your family included in the future home of Army history. Submit your photos and story here:

ARCENT flies on the wings of ARNG and USAR Aviation

ALI AL SALEM AIR BASE, Kuwait – Transporting distinguished visitors, command teams and supplies across multiple locations are key missions for the 29th Combat Aviation Brigade’s fixed-wing detachments.

Tucked away on Ali Al Salem Air Base, Kuwait, is the UC-35 jet detachment operated by U.S. Army Reservists from Fort Dix, New Jersey, and Fort Bragg, North Carolina, and the C-12 detachment operated by Army National Guardsmen from Maine and Oregon. READ MORE >

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Army National Guard Update

California Guardsmen Headed to Afghanistan Train with France’s Rapid Reaction Corps

(Photo: NATO)

California National Guardsmen with the 40th Infantry Division, nicknamed the “Sunshine Division,” are assisting France’s Rapid Reaction Corps to train in crisis-response techniques in Bydgoszcz, Poland. About 30 guardsmen, acting as a subordinate unit of a NATO Joint Task Force, are working with the French unit during the two-week Citadel Bonus mission.
Read More>

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West Virginia Guard Shows Domestic Response Capability to Peruvians

(Photo Credit: Airman Caleb Vance)

The West Virginia National Guard showcased its domestic response and homeland defense capabilities to its partner nation, Peru, during a Nov. 21 visit by Peruvian Air Force Maj. Gen. Gregorio Mendiola, assistant defense and air attaché for the Embassy of Peru in the United States at McLaughlin Air National Guard Base and WVNG Joint Force Headquarters, Charleston, West Virginia.

During the visit, the Peruvians were briefed on and saw first-hand the domestic response capabilities of both the West Virginia Air and Army National Guard, which included the aeromedical evacuation mission, C-130H capabilities, homeland response and joint operations center management of resources during disasters.

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Hundreds more National Guard troops activated to fight
California wildfires

Two firefighters watch as a home burns in a wildfire in La Conchita, Calif., on Dec. 7, 2017. The wind-swept blazes have forced tens of thousands of evacuations and destroyed dozens of homes. (Jae C. Hong/AP)

California has now activated 1,300 members of its National Guard to help fight multiple wildfires that have destroyed hundreds of thousands of acres.

The activated personnel are providing security and overhead support with MQ-9 Reaper and RC-26 reconnaissance aircraft to track and map existing fires and detect new fires and Army high-water vehicles and tactical trucks that can navigate the badly damaged terrain.

The activated personnel are also flying support missions in two C-130Js and six UH-60 helicopters.

The Pentagon said on 08 December that an additional 500 personnel may be activated to support quick reaction force teams, transportation and fire suppression.

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Naval Services Update

The Navy JAG Corps Turns 50

WASHINGTON (Dec. 7, 2017) Judge Advocate General Vice Adm. James Crawford, left, cuts a cake with Lt. Taylor Onik during a celebration of 50 years of Judge Advocate General (JAG) Corps service and excellence. The JAG Corps hosted a commemorative event on Dec. 7 at the U.S. Navy Museum in Washington, D.C. Retired and active-duty judge advocates, as well as other local colleagues, enjoyed remarks from community leaders before cutting a cake to mark the historic anniversary. (U.S. Navy photo by Natalie Morehouse/Released)

The Navy Judge Advocate General's (JAG) Corps celebrates 50 years of service and excellence Dec. 8. "From the time the Navy created the 'law specialist' program, to the JAG Corps we know today, the Navy's legal team has made a difference every day - providing steady counsel and advice to keep us from running aground ethically and on the right course always," said Secretary of the Navy Richard V. Spencer.

Today's JAG Corps includes more than 1,300 accomplished Reserve and active-duty judge advocates practicing in many disciplines, including international law, military justice, administrative law, admiralty and maritime law, environmental law, legal assistance, information operations and intelligence law.

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Navy Reserves Offer Incentives for SELRES Health Professions Officers (HPO) in Critical Wartime Specialties (CWS) and Non-Critical Skill Shortages

(Photo: U.S. Navy)

NAVRESFOR recently announced recruiting incentives for Selected Reserve (SELRES) Officers in the Health Professions Officers field. The goal is to ensure operational effectiveness today and into the future so the Navy can attract the highest quality Officers possible. Successful recruiting requires flexible tools to ensure the Navy is recruiting the correct number of SELRES Officers, with the right skills, to maintain combat readiness. Current bonuses, pending on selected fields, can equal up to $25,000. Specialties for special pay, stipend, and Loan Repayment Programs (LRP) may be found on the Navy Reserve Homeport (NRH)

Air Force Update

In the Air – Hurricane Hunters Close Out Hectic Year

(Left)Tropical Storm Bret- NOAA/NASA Goddard Rapid Response Team. (Right) Hurricane Harvey, (Gerald Herbert, Associated Press)

This year’s hurricane season kept the Air Force Reserve Hurricane Hunters busier than usual. Quite unusual was that it began with Tropical Storm Bret. “. . . the earliest named storm to form far south in the Atlantic Ocean in 167 years of official record keeping.” This year was also exceptional for the number of storms and for the number of category 4 and 5 storms. The Hurricane Hunters flew more than 800 hours for the more than 90 missions in 2017. READ MORE>

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On the Land – Air and Army National Guard Support Hurricanes

Hurricane Marie (Photo by Staff Sgt. Wilma Orozco Fanfan)

While the Air Force Reserve was covering the hurricanes from the air the National Guard was covering the hurricanes on land. At one point, “. . .
more than 18,300 Guard members from 34 states and close to 21,000 Guard members from 29 states and territories supported Harvey and Irma operations, respectively.” "I got a call asking if I could deploy within 36 hours," said Air Force Maj. Mark Smith, a chaplain with the Tennessee Air National Guard’s 118th Wing. "I went home, told my family goodbye, threw my gear in a bag and hit the road again. That's what we do."

Coast Guard Update

Vice Commandant of the Coast Guard Adm. Charles Michel talks to Vice President Michael Pence after the 64th annual National Veterans Day Observance at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Va., Saturday, Nov. 11, 2017. The ceremony was to honor the men and women who have served and continue to serve in the U.S. Armed Forces during war and peacetime.
(Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Loumania Stewart)

Member Update

New members
The Department of Missouri Chapter 442 signed up for 2-year term memberships Ryan Huff and Alexandria Gegen, both captains in the regular Air Force newly assigned to Germany. Special thanks to Brig. Gen. Sam Mitchell, USAF (Ret.) for the recruitment efforts! General Mitchell is one of ROA’s top recruiters. Welcome to ROA, Captain Huff and Captain Gegen!

Worth noting, every month since April 2017 through November, ROA’s term memberships increased. We attribute this to departments doing grassroots recruiting, such as Missouri’s efforts. ROA’s demonstrated success, revitalization, and value proposition in action show that membership helps today’s Reserve families!

Thank You Capt. McKee!
ROA thanks Capt. James R. McKee, Jr., USAR (Ret.) for donating his first retirement check to be used by the association for the good of all Reservists and their families!

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Military Life

TRICARE Payments Beginning January 1, 2018
A recent Humana letter sent to beneficiaries included the change of health care benefits to an annual cycle starting in January. “On January 1, 2018, the North and South Regions will combine to form the new TRICARE East Region. Humana Military will be the TRICARE managed care support contractor for the East. If you're currently a North beneficiary and pay your enrollment premiums using either Electronic Funds Transfers (EFT) or Recurring Credit Card (RCC), this payment arrangement with Health Net Federal Services, LLC (HNFS) will end on December 31, 2017. In order to maintain enrollment without interruption in 2018, you must set up an automatic payment method with Humana Military.”

All TRICARE Reserve Select, TRICARE Retired Reserve, and TRICARE Young Adult enrollees are REQUIRED to pay monthly premiums through an automated, recurring electronic payment of either EFT or RCC. Failure to re-establish your automated monthly payment option may result in disenrollment for non-compliance of program requirements.
If you have an allotment, the automated payment information will happen automatically, so no action is needed.

Exchange Extends Holiday Returns
The Exchange is extending holiday returns until January 31, 2018 if gifts were bought from November 1 through December 24, 2017. According to The Exchange, “Refunds with sales receipts are processed as forms of payment (cash for cash, credit for credit card). Refunds without sales receipts receive an Exchange gift card.”

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2018 Secretary of Defense Employer Support Freedom Award

Has your employer's support made it easier for you to serve in the National Guard or Reserve? Does your civilian employer promote military service, support your family, and keep in contact while you're on routine duty, responding to natural disasters, or serving in a deployed location? If so, you should nominate your civilian employer for the 2018 Secretary of Defense Employer Support Freedom Award.

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NEX Gift Cards – Always the Perfect Gift
New this holiday season, offers a guest checkout for NEX Gift Cards. This allows non-authorized patrons to purchase NEX Gift Cards for their family and loved ones that are serving in the military and are authorized patrons of the NEX. Only authorized customers can redeem the NEX Gift Cards for merchandise online and in store. READ MORE >

Support Active Duty, Retirees and Veterans This Holiday Season with Exchange Gift Cards

DALLAS – Anyone can send a little holiday cheer to Soldiers, Airmen, Sailors, Marines or Veterans this year by purchasing them an Exchange gift card. The gift cards can be redeemed at Exchanges in all 50 states and more than 30 countries, including contingency locations in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Service members can use Exchange gift cards to purchase snacks, electronics, books, clothing, jewelry and more at any Army, Air Force, Navy or Marine Corps exchange. And now, with the launch of the Veterans online shopping benefit in November, honorably discharged Veterans can redeem gift cards online.

“Purchasing an Army & Air Force Exchange Service gift card for service members and Veterans is a great way to remind them that they are valued by those they serve, and served, to protect,” said Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Luis Reyes, the Exchange’s senior enlisted advisor. “It only takes a minute and allows them to get exactly what they need to make the holidays brighter.”

While only authorized military shoppers can redeem Exchange gift cards, anyone can send one by calling 800-527-2345 or visiting and clicking “Purchase Gift and Phone Cards” at the bottom of the page.

From there, Exchange gift cards, ranging in values from $10 to $500, can be addressed to a specific Soldier, Airman, Sailor, Marine or Veteran.

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Jobs on the Hill
Three good sources for legislative related job opportunities

Mantech jobs at Ft Meade, Maryland
Mantech is actively recruiting for the roles below to hire for positions at Ft. Meade in support of the 902nd INSCOM Intelligence contract. These positions require a Top Secret SCI clearance. This program is a new award and Mantech expects to start employees in the next 30 – 45 days and is a four-year program.

The types of positions include knowledge of and or ability to learn:

  • All Source Analyst
  • Open Source Analyst
  • Digital Forensics Analyst
  • Tempest Specialist HUMINT Analyst
  • Counter Intelligence Analyst
  • Jr. Software Engineer Technical Writer
  • Investigation Analyst
  • Intelligence Analyst
  • Research Analyst

If interested, please send a resume to Michelle Wertz me at

Federal Disaster Recovery Coordinator
When disaster strikes, America looks to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to support survivors and first responders in communities all across the country. We are seeking a Federal Disaster Recovery Coordinator (FDRC) to lead and coordinate the timely delivery of all Federal Disaster Recovery assistance to support State, local, and Tribal governments and affected communities in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico. READ MORE >

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Law Reviews:
Legal analysis on the issues impacting your life in and out of uniform

Former Service Member’s Law Center director, retired USNR Capt. Sam Wright, provides periodic law review updates. Please see ROA’s Law Center webpage for more information on service members’ law.

No. 17115 Enforcing USERRA against a State—Good News from Texas
No. 17116 Enforcing USERRA against the State of Minnesota
No. 17117 The Territorial Government of the United States Virgin Islands Does Not Have Sovereign Immunity with respect to USERRA Lawsuits
No. 17118 The Collective Bargaining Agreement Cannot Deprive the Service Member of the Right To Bid on a Vacation Time
No. 17119 Military Personnel Officers Need to Dot is and Cross Ts with respect to USERRA’s Five-Year Limit
No. 17120 The Five-Year Limit Is Based on your Periods of Service, Not Absence from the Civilian Job
No. 17121 You Are Entitled to Seniority and Pension Credit for the Entire Period that you Were away from your Job for Military Service
No. 17122 Involuntary Service Does Not Count Toward Exhausting your Five-Year Limit under USERRA
No. 17123 New Federal Statute Protects Federal Employee Whistleblowers

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To publish your reunion notice in Reserve Voice, email or send by mail to
ROA Reunion Notice
1 Constitution Ave NE
Washington, DC 20002

11th Airborne Division Association, Mid-Atlantic Chapter; 11th Air Assault Division, and 187th Airborne RCT Annual Los Banos Reunion
Date: February 24-28, 2018 • Location: Myrtle Beach, SC
POC: Joseph W. Cole • email: • Phone: 502-641-2631

2018 U.S. Army Officer Candidate School Alumni Association (USAOCSAA) Reunion
DATE: March 25-29, 2018 • Location: Columbus, Ga.

Housing: Columbus Marriott Hotel
POC: Nancy Ionoff • Phone: 813-917-4309

12th TFW, MacDill AFB, FL; Cam Ranh AB & Phu Cat AB; 389 TFS & 480 TFS, Da Nang, Vietnam; 555th TFS 1964-66 and 12th FEW/SFW (Bergstrom AFB, TX & Korea), and all supporting units
Date: 4 – 7 April 2018 • Location: Tucson, AZ
Contact: E. J. Sherwood • email: • Phone: 480-396-4681

USS San Marcos (LSD-25) Reunion
Date: May 4-6, 2018 • Sheraton Society Hill, Philadelphia, PA
Contact: Jack Lieberman

USS Taylor (DD/DDE-468)
Date: 07-11 October, 2018 • Location: Colorado Springs, CO
POC: CDR James G. O'Neill USNR-RET
Email: • Phone: 804-212-8911

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