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South Dakota

Committee Leadership

Mr. James White State Chair
Mr. Ron Mielke Chair Emeritus
Ms. Amy Hanson Lewis and Clark Area Chair
Mr. Randy Rakness Glacial Lakes Area Chair
Mr. Mike Birnbaum Black Hills Area Chair
Mr. Ralph Borkowski Ombudsman Director
Mr. Ron Mielke Bosslift Director
Ms. Stef Garland / Mr.Troy Falardeau Public Affairs Co-Directors
Vacant   Employer Outreach Director
Vacant Military Outreach Director
Ms. Lona Christensen Training Director
Ms. Mary De Leeuw / Ms. Karon Gubbrud Awards Co-Directors
Ms. Kathleen Schuh Volunteer Coordinator

ESGR, a Department of Defense office, is comprised of dedicated and trained volunteers and staff. We will develop and promote employer support for Guard and Reserve service by advocating relevant initiatives, recognizing outstanding support, increasing awareness of applicable laws, and resolving conflict between employers and Service members.

ESGR informs and educates Service members and their civilian employers regarding their rights and responsibilities governed by the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act of 1994 (USERRA). ESGR does not have statutory authority to enforce, but serves as a neutral, free resource to employers and service members. ESGR’s trained ombudsmen provide mediation of issues relating to compliance with USERRA.

Contact Information

Maureen Dowling Volunteer Support Technician 801 W. National Guard Drive
Sioux Falls SD 57104
605-357-2983

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November 22, 2022ESGR Gathers for Annual National Leadership Meeting

ALEXANDRIA, Va. – As we continue to celebrate our 50th Anniversary, dozens of state committee leaders, volunteers, and staff of the Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR) gathered at the Mark Center for the 2022 Annual National Leadership Meeting (NLM) November 17 and 18.

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September 30, 20222023 Freedom Award Nomination Season Opens October 1

WASHINGTON ­– The 2023 Secretary of Defense Employer Support Freedom Award nomination season opens October 1, meaning Guard and Reserve Service members across the nation can submit their exceptional employers for national recognition beginning October 1 until December 31.

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April 10, 2022Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve Announces 2021 Volunteers of Year

ALEXANDRIA, Va. –­­­­­­­­­­­­­­ In this our 50th year, Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve proudly announces the 2021 Volunteers of the Year (VOTY). Volunteers who serve in following functional and operational areas were nominated by their respective State Committee for the prestigious honor of being named Volunteer of the Year: Military Outreach, Employer Outreach, Public Affairs, Training, Ombudsman, and Operations.

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