Marshfield native is first female Wyoming National Guard infantry commander
By Kristina Kranz
CENTRAL WISCONSIN – To Marshfield native, Alyssa Brenner, a change of command ceremony means a step forward in her career. To the rest of the Wyoming National Guard, it was a historic milestone. As she grasped the guidon in the traditional passing of the colors, she became the first female to command an infantry unit in the Wyoming Army National Guard. She is the second female to command a combat arms unit in Wyoming, joining Capt. Leslie Brazil, former commander of Alpha Battery, 2-300th Field Artillery Regiment.
First Lt. Brenner first enlisted in the Guard when she was in college. After a year, she decided to commission and completed the Infantry Basic Officer Leadership Course. She’s been with Charlie Company, 1-297th Infantry Regiment in Afton since 2016.
“The number of women serving in combat arms has slowly begun to grow. 2015 marked the year when the ban on females in combat arms lifted. The numbers are still small, and the group of women that serve as commanders in combat arms is even smaller, but they continue to grow,” a release from the National Guard stated.
“It’s a cool thing to see,’ Brenner says when she sees her fellow female officers starting to command other units. “To the women who want to do these things, don’t ever let anyone tell you that you can’t.”
Brenner currently resides in Golden, CO, where she serves as a police officer with the Golden Police Department. She has been a member of the Wyoming Army National Guard for five years.
In November, Brenner received command of the 1-297th from the outgoing commander, Capt. Spencer Jones, in the traditional change of command ceremony.
In the time that she’s been with the 1-297th, Brenner has developed a trusting relationship with her soldiers, which she hopes to continue to foster and build. She said that she is excited for the opportunity to command the unit and feels lucky to be able to.
“I’ve worked with these soldiers for the past five years. We’ve been through all the training and deployments together. I know them, and they know me. They make the job easy,” Brenner says. “It will be a big challenge, but I’m excited about it.”