Kentucky Guard swears in two newest warrant officers

Story and photos by Sgt. Scott Raymond, Kentucky National Guard Public Affairs Office

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Kentucky’s Adjutant General, Maj. Gen. Edward W. Tonini presides over an appointment ceremony for Warrant Officers Timothy Collins and Robert Boatman at Boone National Guard Center in Frankfort, Ky., Aug. 21, 2012. (Kentucky National Guard photo by Sgt. Scott Raymond)

FRANKFORT, Ky. — The Kentucky National Guard appointed two new warrant officers to its ranks during a ceremony at Boone National Guard Center in Frankfort, Aug.21.  Kentucky’s Adjutant General, Maj. Gen. Edward W. Tonini presided over the event.

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Kentucky’s Adjutant General, Maj. Gen. Edward W. Tonini congratulates Warrant Officer Robert Boatman as Mechelle Boatman watches, during an appointment ceremony at Boone National Guard Center in Frankfort, Ky., Aug. 21, 2012. (Kentucky National Guard photo by Sgt. Scott Raymond)

Warrant Officer Robert Boatman of the 103rd Brigade Support Battalion has served in the military for nearly 18 years. The Lawrenceburg, Ky., native, has served in the Kentucky National Guard since 2003. Boatman completed his warrant officer school in 2011, but waited until a position opened up for him to be appointed. His wife Mechelle was on hand to pin his new rank on his uniform.

Boatman said he believes his new rank will open new doors and take him further in his career as he hopes to go as high as he can.

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Lora Collins pins warrant officer rank to the uniform of her husband,Timothy Collins, during an appointment ceremony at Boone National Guard Center in Frankfort, Ky., Aug. 21, 2012. (Kentucky National Guard photo by Sgt. Scott Raymond)

Warrant Officer Timothy Collins, also with the 103rd BSB,  joined the Kentucky National Guard in 2001 after serving in the U.S. Marine Corps.  The Russell Springs, Ky., native, worked as the Administration NCO, and will become an AGR (Active Guard and Reserve) Manager for the Human Resources Office in Frankfort.  Collins was joined at the ceremony by his wife Lora and their two sons, Ethan and Elijah.

“Becoming a warrant officer has been a career goal for me,” said Collins. “I did this to do bigger and better things for my profession and myself.”

State Command Chief Warrant Officer James Simms spoke of the importance of warrant officers in the service and of the quality Soldiers joining that elite group. Referring to Boatman and Collins, Simms called them examples of the leadership and expertise needed in the Kentucky Army National Guard.

Currently there are over 190 warrant officer authorizations with 148 total warrant officers in the Kentucky Army National Guard.  The small group of Soldiers is recruiting to fill its ranks with experts in their field. Boatman said if he could say anything to those thinking of becoming a warrant officer, it’s about the experience one can bring.

“Learn everything you can,” he said. “And bring the traits a good NCO, it’s what makes a good warrant officer.”

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