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JTF 115 J1: Providing manpower continuity in fight against COVID-19

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Senior Airman Morgan Lee, 195th Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance Group personnel human resources, left, and Army Spc. Benjamin Aleman, 49th Personnel Company human resources specialist assistant review manpower documents April 23, 2020, at Roseville, California. The J1 section is responsible for tracking and administrative support of personnel activated for Joint Task Force 115, which is responding to COVID-19 in California. (U.S. National Guard photo by Tech Sgt. Jeffrey Schultze)

ROSEVILLE, Calif. --

The front lines of the California National Guard Joint Task Force 115 response to COVID-19 includes supporting food banks, medical equipment logistics and operations of shelters. One team providing critical support from behind the scenes is the J1 section. They are the personnel tracking manpower, processing orders for state activations and ensuring individuals in the COVID-19 fight are taken care of while activated.

These administrative professionals, they themselves activated, provide mission continuity impacting both Army and Air National Guard personnel during this challenging time. They start every morning making sure all personnel are accounted for and provide members with information and resources as mission changes occur during COVID-19.

“Our primary goal is accountability, personnel recording, dealing with pay issues, and getting information out to the state representatives,” said 2nd Lt. Nicol Davidson, 195th Wing force support officer. “We want to make sure the members are happy and get paid on time.”

Throughout the J1 day-to-day mission, the joint team utilizes multiple administrative tracking systems to ensure decision makers have an accurate picture of what is happening on the ground.

“We handle Personnel Status Report (PERSTAT) and personal accountability for the whole task force,” said Army Spc. Benjamin Aleman, 49th Personnel Company human resources specialist. “We handle any issues that come about and make sure no one is delinquent on their PERSTAT.”

The team actively tracks personnel working in food banks and medical warehouses throughout California.

“I take accountability every day to make sure everyone is good to go,” said Senior Airman Morgan Lee, 195 Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance Group human resource assistant. “Our numbers show us how many people we have working each day, and it shows us per mission, where everyone is located, if this doesn’t happen, members don’t get paid. Supporting our members is what we are here for.”

Davidson reflects on the importance of providing context for her team and their place in humanitarian operations.

“All the food that has been distributed, all the beds that have been set up in hospitals. When you see those things, you have to express those things to your people and show them the importance of what they are doing in the overall effort to support that.”