4th Regiment Welcomes Home New Officer
Story by: CW2 Janet Schmelzer, PAO, 4th Regiment
FORT WORTH, TEXAS--On May 10, 2014, 2LT Arto Lehtonen, 4th Regiment, Texas State Guard (TXSG) received his commission following his graduation from the recent Class 13 of the Officer Candidate School (OCS) at Camp Mabry, Austin, Texas. He returns to the 3rd Battalion, 4th Regiment to assume his new responsibilities as an officer.
Born in Halikko, Finland, Lehtonen grew up on a small dairy farm with his eight siblings. His parents encouraged their children to work hard, study their school lessons, and be responsible individuals. He joined the local 4H club and served as club president. He liked to read history books and tinkered with an old tube radio. "I guess I can say that my dream jobs were either," he remembered, "an engineer or a soldier." After high school he joined the Finnish Army (military service is mandatory for all males in Finland). After his service in the army, he then went on to attend the Technical Institute of Turku, graduating with a BS in Telecommunications.
In 2005 his employer, Nokia, relocated him to Texas and both he and his wife Lilli became naturalized citizens in 2012. He now is employed by BenefitMall, Inc. as a software developer.
In 2011 Lehtonen joined the TXSG because "I wanted to give back to this society and the TXSG mission sounded like something that I wanted to be involved with." He has served as a squad leader and platoon sergeant. In deciding to apply for OCS, "I wanted to grow as a leader and OCS is the best leadership training you can get in the TXSG." From OCS he learned both theoretical and practical leadership skills, "some of which I have even been able to use in my civilian job." The most challenging part of OCS, according to Lehtonen, was Military Decision Making Process and Troop Leading Process. This four-month project required writing WARNOs and OPORDs and the presentation of a briefing on how the processes were used to produce those orders.