Former Multinational Division North East Deputy Chief of Staff of Operations and Illinois National Guard Soldier Henry S. Dixon was promoted to Brigadier General during a ceremony April 12, at the Pritzker Military Museum and Library in Chicago. During his promotion ceremony, Dixon said heartfelt thanks to his family and mentors -“This is an amazing moment. I appreciate everyone being here. 30 years ago, cadet, almost lieutenant Dixon would have been happy to achieve the rank of major and be satisfied with a little career to be able serve his country”.
Dixon spoke very highly of his time with MND-NE. “I attribute the selection for promotion and this next assignment directly to the accomplishments we attained at MND-NE. I believe the NATO experience, and success at MND-NE, distinguished me from my peers,” said Dixon.
When asked how he sees continued cooperation between the Illinois Army and Air National Guard and MND-NE, Dixon said the following: “I see two possible areas which MND-NE and IL National Guard could partner in the future. As a NATO Multinational Division, I see the potential of the 33rd Brigade Combat Team working as a subordinate unit for a NATO Command Post Exercise.” Dixon also said that the Illinois Air Guard has the capability to extend the 182 Air Support Operations Group to enhance the MND-NE joint fires capability.
Dixon has nice memories of his time in Poland and working with members of MND-NE. “We greatly miss living in Poland and the experience of working at MND-NE in Elblag. I admire the dedication of all the NATO members serving with the unit and the support from the local community. I look forward to the opportunity to return to NATO and Poland in the future in any capacity the Army will allow,” said Dixon in conclusion.
Throughout his 30 years of service, Brigadier General Henry S. Dixon held a variety of leadership positions, including Commander, 33rd Infantry Brigade Combat Team, Executive Officer, 65th Troop Brigade, and Commander, 2nd Battalion, 130th Infantry Regiment. Dixon has also served as Director, Strategic Plans and Policy for the Illinois National Guard and the Joint Forces Headquarters G-3 and of course as the Deputy Chief of Staff of Operations at MND-NE.
Dixon deployed to Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom from 2005-2006, where he already worked with Polish forces, and Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom from 2008-2009. In Afghanistan, Dixon served as the Chief of Staff Afghanistan Regional Security Integration Command-West.
Included among Dixon’s many military awards and decorations are the Bronze Star Medal, Meritorious Service Medal, Iraqi and Afghanistan Campaign Medals, Combat Infantry, Parachutist and Pathfinders badges. Upon his departure from MND-NE, Dixon was also awarded the Bronze Medal of the Polish Army, a prestigious decoration, signed by the Polish Minister of National Defense, presented by MND-NE Commander, Maj. Gen. Krzysztof Motacki.
Story by Illinois Army and Air National Guard and Multinational Division North East STRATCOM and Public Affairs Offices
Photos: Sgt. 1st Class Patrick J. DeGeorge, 139th Mobile Public Affairs Detachment, Capt. Paulina Montewka, MND-NE