50th Regional Support Group

Adjutant General of Florida Maj. Gen. Emmett R. Titshaw Jr. (left) presents unit colors to incoming commander of the 50th Area Support Group Col. Valeria Gonzalez-Kerr during a change of command ceremony in Homestead, Aug. 14, 2011. Photo by Master Sgt. Thomas Kielbasa

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Commander

Col. Valeria Gonzalez-Kerr

Command Sergeant Major

Command Sgt. Maj. Rick Mendez

Location: Homestead, Fla.

Mission: To provide combat service support to units assigned to or passing through its area of responsibility and command and control for various assigned units. It is also responsible for physical security and rear area force protection activities.

Soldiers from the 50th Regional Support Group play an important role in Florida’s response to emergencies, providing logistics support to hurricane and disaster response throughout the state when called on by the governor. These Soldiers have provided assistance during several state missions in support of major storms in the past and continue to be ready for any upcoming state missions.

The 50th RSG is comprised of Soldiers from: Headquarters and Headquarters Company (HHC), 50th RSG; 930th Army Liaison Team; HHC, 927th Combat Sustainment Support Battalion; 144th Transportation Company; 256th Medical Company; 631st Maintenance Company; 153rd Finance Company; 260th Military Intelligence Battalion; 356th Quartermaster Company; 856th Quartermaster Company and the 146th Signal Battalion.

More than 1,800 Florida Army National Guard Soldiers are assigned to the major command.

Cropped formation, 50th Area Support Group Change of Command, Aug. 14, 2011, Homestead, Fla. Photo by Master Sgt. Thomas Kielbasa

Unit History:

The 50th Area Support Group was constituted July 5, 1946, in the Florida National Guard as Headquarters Company, 1st Battalion, 211th Infantry, an element of the 51st Infantry Division. It organized and was Federally recognized Dec. 17, 1946, in Miami. It consolidated April 15, 1959, with the Service Company, 211th Infantry (organized and federally recognized April 15, 1947, in Miami), and the consolidated unit was reorganized and redesignated as the Combat Support Company, 1st Battle Group, 211th Infantry.

It converted and was redesignated April 15, 1963, as Headquarters and Headquarters Battery, 164th Artillery Group, and was relieved from assignment to the 51st Infantry Division. It consolidated May 1, 1963, with Brigade Headquarters, 55th Operational Headquarters and the consolidated unit was designated as Headquarters and Headquarters Battery, 164th Artillery Group.

The 55th Operational Headquarters was constituted July 5, 1946, in the Florida National Guard as Headquarters Company, 211th Infantry, an element of the 51st Infantry Division. It organized and was federally recognized Nov. 14, 1946, in Miami. It consolidated April 15, 1959, with part of the Medical Company, 211th Infantry (organized and federally recognized March 11, 1948, in Miami), and the consolidated unit was reorganized and redesignated as Headquarters Company, 1st Battle Group, 211th Infantry. The unit converted and was redesignated Feb. 15, 1963, as the Brigade Headquarters, 55th Operational Headquarters, and was relieved from assignment to the 51st Infantry Division.

The 164th Artillery Group was reorganized and redesignated Jan. 3, 1972, as Headquarters and Headquarters Battery, 227th Field Artillery Group. It was redesignated May 9, 1978, as Headquarters and Headquarters Battery, 227th Field Artillery Brigade.

The unit converted and was redesignated Oct. 1, 1988, as Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 50th Support Group. It relocated Sept. 1, 1997, to Homestead, Fla.

Recent Missions: The 50th Area Support Group deployed to Kuwait in 2003 in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom, providing logistics support to the Kuwait and Iraq combat theaters while providing command technical control to 13 deployment and redeployment support nodes in Kuwait. The 50th ASG led the Combined Joint Reception, Staging and Onward-movement process for U.S. and Coalition troops ensuring entire divisions redeployed in record time. The command staff orchestrated the flow of more than 265,000 personnel and 365,000 pieces of equipment through the area of responsibility. The 50th ASG ensured more than 4.5 million meals were served in seven facilities, including the largest fielded in the Army. In addition, the command reduced monthly operations expenses by $1.8 million through the elimination of excess capacity and consolidating contracts for service and facilities in the area of responsibility. Group-wide, the 50th ASG processed a daily average of 1,629 material release orders in the largest repair parts activity in the U.S. Army, stocking more than 75,000 individual lines. The 50th ASG generated a 100% wall-to-wall inventory of the Theater Ammunition Supply Activity of more than 12,000 tons of ammunition while supporting the largest rotation of combat forces since World War II.

In 2007, 50th ASG staff organized Joint Task Force Everglades in support of the U.S. Border Patrol, leading more than 200 Florida Guardsmen from several major subordinate commands and the Air National Guard in an extremely successful operation in Yuma, Arizona. The unit’s ongoing support to contingency plans in the Korean theater ran concurrently to the mission in Arizona, where the Soldiers of the 50th ASG trained alongside the 501st Sustainment Brigade during the annual Ulchi Focus Lens Operation.

In mid August 2007 and again in late February 2008, staff from the 50th ASG deployed to the Korean peninsula to reinforce long-standing relationships and take part in dramatic changes in the theater combat plan.

In July 2007, senior staff officers from the 50th ASG augmented the 53rd Infantry Brigade’s Rapid Trident mission to Kiev, Ukraine, gaining insight into NATO multi-national operations while serving as the senior operations and logistics observer controllers.

In March of 2008, the 50th ASG participated in an exchange with the government and armed forces of Guyana as part of the State Partnership Program. Calling on their experience, they provided a conceptual overview of warehouse functions in disaster operations, an organizational framework of operational employment of logistics Soldiers and assets, including the conduct of staff estimates, and a practical exercise that sought to employ the principles discussed. Participants from the Guyana Defense Force, Civil Defense Commission and various ministries focused on their experience in the flooding events in 2005 & 2006 in Guyana, while the ASG’s moderators sought to relate experiences from the 2004 – 2006 hurricane seasons in Florida.

For a two-week period in April 2008, 50th ASG Soldiers continuously occupied forward observation points along the remote border between Luna County, New Mexico and Chihuahua State, Mexico. Task Force Palmetto’s efforts to observe and report undocumented alien attempts to cross into the United States successfully demonstrated that the cooperative efforts of the Border Patrol and the National Guard are dramatically reducing drug smuggling and human trafficking across the border.

In 2010, the 50th ASG prepared two units for mobilization and reintegrated three units from deployment. In response to Operation Deep Water Horizon, the 50th ASG provided three emergency communications teams, key liaison officers and supported a variety of missions in the Unified Command.

The 50th RSG remains postured to support a wide range of civil support missions including CERF-P Rapid Response, wildfire support and all logistical support emergency response contingencies. Our ongoing efforts in Korea continue as we train for part of Ulchi Focus Guardian. Our partnership in this part of the world remains critical as we support the military operations on the Korean pennisula.

Unit insignia: The 50th Area Support Group’s shoulder sleeve insignia is mounted on a shield-shaped embroidered item, arched outwardly at top. The insignia, in the shape of a broad spear tip, symbolizes Florida’s Native American heritage and the home state of the Group. The bend within the border signifies the increased role of the unit to protect the people of Florida during times of disaster. The green and blue background alludes to the meeting of land and sea, emphasizing the Group’s areas of operations. The sun and its radiating rays allude to the eight cardinal points of the compass, illustrating the global reach and the impact of the soldiers of the 50th Area Support Group. The shoulder sleeve insignia was approved on Feb. 24, 2009.