An official website of the United States government
Here's how you know
A .mil website belongs to an official U.S. Department of Defense organization in the United States.
A lock (lock ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .mil website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

NEWS | Oct. 3, 2022

Alaska National Guard greets newest Command Senior Enlisted Leader

By Staff Sgt. Katie Mazos-Vega , Alaska National Guard Public Affairs

Command Sgt. Maj. Julie Small assumed responsibility as the new command senior enlisted leader of the Alaska National Guard Oct. 1. As the newest CSEL, she will work closely with the Alaska Adjutant General, Maj. Gen. Torrence Saxe to advise and be a voice for all enlisted personnel.
Raised in Alaska, Small grew up around the Alaska Army National Guard. With her family’s lengthy history of service, she is no stranger to the life of a Guardsman.
“I’ve been a member of the Alaska Army National Guard for 43 years. I know you’re probably thinking ‘That’s not possible’ because I’m not that old!” Small joked. “My dad joined [the Guard] when I was two years old. So, I began as a family member, and then I joined after my two older sisters and brother.”
Following in the footsteps of her family members, Small enlisted at 17 as a clerk typist, and when she got her first Active Guard Reserve job as a human resources sergeant, the rest of her career soared from there.
Since then, Small has served in a variety of assignments including senior human resources sergeant, platoon sergeant for Delta Company, 207th Aviation Regiment, first sergeant of Joint Force Headquarters, and commandant of 207th Multi-Functional Training Regiment. Her most recent assignments were command sergeant major of 297th Regional Support Group and as the personnel sergeant major for the Alaska Army National Guard.
Tending to Soldiers’ needs comes easy to Small, so it is no surprise that her favorite assignment thus far in her career was her position as a first sergeant.
As she prepares to move into her new role, she looks back on her predecessors’ goals and objectives, and plans to build off of what they’ve done. An objective she is prioritizing is making her presence well-known to all members of the Alaska National Guard’s enlisted force.
“I just plan to be present,” Small said “I think being present will make a huge difference. Whether it’s an Army event or an Air Force event, you will see me there.”
Another topic of importance to Small is noncommissioned officer professional development, a tradition she has carried on since her days as a human resources sergeant.
“I think NCO professional development is so important because it builds on the professionalism within the organization,” Small said “It’s always been something that I’ve done, and made sure of being implemented to my first sergeants and NCOs.”
With those goals in mind, Small is set to lead the enlisted personnel of the Alaska National Guard to success.
“The heritage of our organization, the heritage of the military and why we do what we do matters so much,” she added “We need to pass that on, otherwise it will be lost.”
Small enters the job with excitement and is honored to be in her new position.
 “I never dreamed that I was ever going to be the senior enlisted leader,” she said “But I’m incredibly blessed to be here, and can’t wait to see where this takes me.” 
Alaska Military Youth Academy Career Work Experience program gives cadets a head start with job training and skills
June 8, 2023
Alaska Military Youth Academy cadet Jackie Tinker uses a hand torch to solder a piece of copper pipe during a Career Work Experience program class at Alaska Works Partnership in Anchorage June 01, 2023.

Adjutant General’s Match brings state’s top marksman to Fort Wainwright
June 8, 2023
Alaska Army National Guard Staff Sgt. Travis Hall, 49th Missile Defense Battalion (GMD), fires a M110 A1 Marksman Rifle as AKARNG Maj. James Goddard, officer in charge of the TAG Match, acts as a range safety at the Fort Wainwright Range Complex June 4, 2023. The TAG Match is an annual marksmanship competition designed to challenge and test basic shooting fundamentals.

USAACE tactics instructors and Alaska Army National Guardsmen look to build bridging solution for Army Aviation initiative
June 6, 2023
Chinook flying near Knik Glacier

Alaska Air Guardsmen assist National Park Service rescue of Denali climber
May 24, 2023
Alaska Air Guardsmen assist National Park Service rescue of Denali climber

Alaska National Guardsmen, State Defense Force deploy to Bethel, Circle to assist with flood recovery
May 23, 2023
Senior Airman Sean Lake, 168th Wing, Alaska Air National Guard, loads gear at Eielson Air Force Base in preparation to help with debris-clearing operations in Circle, Alaska, May 23, 2023. Four Guardsmen and one member of the Alaska State Defense Force will assist with cleanup and flood recovery efforts at the request of the Alaska State Emergency Operations Center. (Alaska Air National Guard photo by Senior Master Sgt. Julie Avey)

Alaska's Best Warrior Competition Award Ceremony
May 21, 2023
Command Sgt. Maj. John Phlegar, left, the state command sergeant major of the Alaska Army National Guard, pins the Army Commendation Medal on the 2023 Soldier of the Year, Spc. Adam Macro, a military police Soldier from Alpha Company, 49th Missile Defense Battalion during the Best Warrior Competition awards ceremony held at Camp Carroll, Alaska, May 21, 2023. Throughout the week of May 16, 2023, the Best Warrior Competition tested Soldiers on their physical and mental readiness as well as their knowledge of Army doctrine and common warrior tasks.

Alaska Army National Guard HH-60 hoists injured backcountry skier off Girdwood mountainside
April 20, 2023
On April 19, 2023, an avalanche broke loose at the top of a mountain near Girdwood, Alaska, pulling a backcountry skier 800 to 1000 feet down the face. The red box indicates the injured skier and rescue team. The Alaska Army National Guard’s Golf Company, 2-211th General Aviation Support Battalion received mission request from the Alaska Rescue Coordination Center and rescued the skier with a hoist-capable HH-60M Black Hawk helicopter specially designed for medical evacuations.

Bartlett High School JROTC Takes Flight With Alaska Army National Guard
April 14, 2023
Bartlett High School JROTC Takes Flight with Alaska Army National Guard

National Guard, tribal consortium team up in St. Mary’s, Western Alaska
April 6, 2023
Alaska Air National Guard Staff Sgt. Sharon Queenie, a surveillance technician with the 176th Air Defense Squadron, gives a presentation to students from her hometown of St. Mary’s, Alaska, during a recruiting initiative in partnership with the Association of Village Council Presidents at the Andreafski High School, March 31, 2023. The Association of Village Council Presidents recently partnered with the Alaska National Guard to provide recruiting information and resources through their Tribal Job Centers. The initiative kicked off in St. Mary’s with presentations from AVCP and AKNG, where representatives interacted with students, parents, teachers, and community members. AVCP provides community development, education, social services, culturally relevant programs, and advocacy for the people and 56 tribes of Western Alaska.

Alaska Air Guardsmen medevac patient from Little Diomede
April 5, 2023
Alaska Air Guardsmen medevac patient from Little Diomede