Martin Luther King Day—A time to celebrate diversity
Story by Lt. Col. Kirk Hilbrecht, Director of Public Affairs, Kentucky National Guard
Pictures are public domain
FRANKFORT, Ky – Today the nation celebrates Martin Luther King Day, a federal holiday held on the third Monday of January. It memorializes the life and achievements of Martin Luther King Jr., an influential American civil rights leader. King is most well-known for his campaigns to end racial segregation on public transport and for racial equality in the United States.
King paved the path for all to follow regarding the awareness and acceptance of individual characteristics, experiences and abilities of each individual: diversity.
The Kentucky National Guard created a Joint Diversity Executive Committee to help identify and promote the unique characteristics within the Kentucky Guard culture.
The KYJDEC is chaired by Air Guard Brig. Gen. Mike Dornbush, chief of the joint staff, and Army Guard Lt. Col. Tinagay Riddle, diversity director.
Currently, the KYJDEC is charted to promote diversity across the Kentucky Guard through understanding, training and academic education.
Through understanding, Guardmembers can see that diversity is about different attributes, experiences and backgrounds of our Servicemembers, civilians, and family members.
“Diversity is much more than what we once considered it to be in the past,” said Air Guard Lt. Col. Dallas Kratzer, education and training chair, KYJDEC. “Today, diversity has expanded to include the unique attributes and skills that our people bring to the workplace to accomplish the mission of the Guard.”
The training the KYJDEC promotes identifies diversity within professional development courses, such as leadership professional development.
KYJDEC also wants to emphasis the promotion of diversity through academic education, where the Guardmembers engage the unique culture created through the diverse environment of a college campus.
The National Guard Bureau will conduct a virtual diversity conference on January 18th that can be accessed online by clicking here . For more information regarding the virtual conference, click on the image below.
For more information about the Army and Air Force diversity programs, please click on the links below.