The Texas State Guard is looking for a few good Texans.

If you have what it takes, there are a number of benefits offered to the members of the Texas State Guard to encourage enlistment. These benefits are provided by several different entities, including the State of Texas, various county and local municipalities, and private businesses.

For many who choose service in the Texas State Guard, however, the greatest benefit is the pride of being a valued member of an elite group: part of a corps of highly-trained, professional citizen-soldiers serving fellow Texans.

Benefits include:

  • Daily stipend for State Active Duty (emergency activations, as authorized)
  • Paid Annual Training
  • Free Texas Concealed Handgun License
  • Free Texas Super Combo Hunting and Fishing License
  • Job Protections When Called to Duty
  • Paid Military Leave (for State Employees)
  • Texas Guard License Plate Eligibility (plate paid for by TXSG member)
  • JAG assistance in preparation of basic wills and powers of attorney
  • College Tuition Assistance (after first year of service)
  • College Course Credit for TXSG Training & Experience (final regs TBD in 2020)
  • Health Insurance after 60 days of continuous activation (very limited missions)
  • Worker's Compensation for On-Duty Injury
  • Military Discounts with TXSG ID Card at various retailers
  • Leadership Opportunities and Professional Development Education
  • Specialized Training (i.e., Search & Rescue, Boat Operations, FEMA Courses)
  • Veteran Employment Preferences (per Texas Code Title 6, Ch. 657.001)
  • Military Awards and Honors for Exemplary Service
  • State Military Funerals, Honors and Grave Markers
  • No Overseas Deployments
  • A Sense of Belonging, Fulfillment and Pride in Serving Fellow Texans
  • Camaraderie with Trained, Service-Minded Professionals
  • The Honor of Wearing the Uniform of the Texas State Guard

The Texas State Guard (TXSG) is a professionally-trained branch of the Texas Military Forces (TXMF) headquartered at Camp Mabry in Austin, Texas with regional brigades statewide. The TXSG is one of three TXMF branches, which also includes the Texas Army National Guard and the Texas Air National Guard.

The purpose of the TXSG is to provide mission-ready military forces to assist state and local authorities in times of state emergencies; to conduct homeland security and community service activities under the umbrella of Defense Support to Civil Authorities, and to augment the other branches of the TXMF as required.

The State Guard operates under the command of the Adjutant General of Texas and the Governor as Commander-in-Chief of all state military forces. The TXSG is authorized by the U.S. and Texas Constitutions, codified by statute under 32 U.S.C. Section 109 and Texas Government Code (Chapters 431, 432, and 437).

 

The Texas State Guard (TXSG) is a direct descendant of the earliest settler defense forces mustered by Stephen F. Austin (eventually annexed by the first president of the Texas Republic, Sam Houston) to preserve tranquility.  During the 20th century, the TXSG distinguished itself as an essential home defense force, mobilized to assist state and local authorities in dealing with major civil disturbances and disasters. Today the TXSG embodies the spirit of the modern citizen-soldier, trained in the latest emergency management skills and prepared to answer the needs of the state and its people at a moment’s notice.

Many of the men and women of the State Guard come from backgrounds in the U.S. Armed Forces, joining the TXSG as part of an ongoing commitment to public service. Others have seen the TXSG in action during crises like Hurricane Harvey, and have been inspired to serve by witnessing the professionalism, sense of duty and courage of the State Guard under what are often difficult and challenging conditions. Still, others have felt the effects of the TXSG firsthand, having been rescued from dangerous situations - or offered assistance during an emergency and have chosen to join our ranks. 

Members of the Texas State Guard come from all parts of the State and a diverse range of backgrounds, educational levels, and occupations, but we are united by a commitment to serve our fellow Texans and a pride of serving in a military corps considered by many to be the premier State Guard in the United States.

 

During emergencies, men and women serving in the Texas State Guard (TXSG) may receive orders for duty which, upon short notice, may require them to take leave from their usual place of employment in order to serve. Under Texas law, members of the TXSG are entitled to a wide array of job protections while under orders.  For example, a Texas employer may not terminate an employee who is a member of the state military forces when they are ordered to training or duty. The employee is entitled to return to the same employment held when ordered to training or duty and may not be subjected to loss of time, efficiency rating, vacation time, or any benefit of employment during or because of the absence. Texas employers are prohibited from discriminating against or causing negative consequences to their employees due to an employee’s service in the TXSG. There are additional protections for state employees, and an employee’s rights may be largely dependent upon one’s own particular situation.

Individuals employed by the federal government are not entitled to the same employment protections under Texas state law. Those employed by the federal government are encouraged to consult with their employer on specifics for his/her situation.

The mission of the TXSG would not be possible without the sacrifices made by TXSG members and their employers.  More specific questions may be directed to The Office of the State Judge Advocate at Texas State Guard Headquarters. 

 

Members of the Texas State Guard (TXSG) are required to attend monthly drill weekends, four days of Annual Training, and emergency State Active Duty deployments when ordered.

Part of that time is spent at Unit Training Assemblies (drills or meetings) which are usually one each month. These drills are used for training sessions and activity coordination. Your particular assignment may require additional hours of work to plan, lead, organize and complete necessary tasks. As a general rule, we work to completion, not to time. In addition, there are continuing education requirements, which include TXSG and FEMA online coursework, and taking independent study distance learning courses. In the event of an emergency, the state will call you to State Active Duty for a specified period of time within Texas.

 

If you are activated for State Active Duty, the minimum number of days you will be deployed will be three days. While active-duty seldom runs longer than two weeks, it may be longer depending upon the nature and severity of the emergency.

If you are attending high school you will not be called to State Active Duty during the school year but must continue to attend regularly scheduled drills. If you are actively attending college, generally, you will not be called to State Active Duty if it would adversely impact your classes. Again, you would be expected to attend regularly scheduled drills. You may be called to duty during the summer or a period you are not attending classes.

Texas State Guard (TXSG) enlistments and appointments are “open-ended”. There is no minimum term of service, although personnel is requested to make a commitment to serve a minimum of three years. The first longevity award is given at the three year anniversary. Personnel wishing to continue service in the TXSG are not required to “reenlist” at any time. If conditions of participation in the TXSG cause a conflict with the individual’s employment, family, or other obligations, personnel are encouraged to work within their chain of command before resigning; but an individual is free to resign at any time and request discharge for any reason.

For State Active Duty, full pay and approved expense reimbursement are applicable. Generally, there is no pay for time spent at drills, online coursework, or in distance learning. Some training opportunities may be funded by the state or Department of Homeland Security.

No. At this time all officers and enlisted members are responsible for purchasing their uniforms, patches, rank insignia and accessories. However, efforts are currently being made to provide uniforms or provide stipends to help defray costs for enlisted ranks.

Applicants will be evaluated and appointed or enlisted in accordance with Texas State Military Forces regulations to an appropriate rank based on prior military service, education, civilian occupation, and other factors. It also depends on the authorized job position (billet) the applicant will be filling within the unit. Personnel with prior federal military service will normally enter the Texas State Guard (TXSG) no lower than the same grade as their federal grade when separated Prior service personnel in senior ranks (E7 and above or O4 and above) require TXSG Headquarters review prior to admittance or assignment of rank as the authorized positions are limited. Non-prior service personnel will normally enter the TXSG at E-1 and earn E-2 upon completion of Basic Orientation Training. (BOT). However, each applicant package is reviewed on an individual basis by an enlistment or appointment Board. 

Texas State Guard (TXSG) ranks are state and not federal ranks (though ranks in the TXSG generally resemble those used by the U.S. Army).  All appointments, commissions, warrants, and enlistments are recognized and authorized by the Governor of the State of Texas through the Adjutant General of the State of Texas. TXSG military personnel render to all members of the military community, and receive from them, all courtesies common to all such members, such as saluting, forms of address etc.

Texas State Guard (TXSG) promotion eligibility includes a combination of Basic Orientation Training (BOT), required self-study courses, Professional Military Education (PME), time in grade, satisfactory drill participation, demonstrated leadership, and recommendation of your superiors. Under specific circumstances and criteria, enlisted personnel may apply for Warrant Officer grade and Officer Candidate School. 

Applicants are initially only required to submit a "Report of Medical History" as part of the application package. Generally, a physical examination is not required. The review of this medical history by Texas State Guard (TXSG) medical professionals will ultimately determine acceptability.

There are no specific physical fitness requirements to join the Texas State Guard (TXSG) other than being in reasonably good physical condition, able to endure moderate stress and physical activity. There are strict height/weight requirements which can be found here:  (H/W chart). 
Participation in the TXSG Physical Fitness Test is voluntary and members who pass the test are awarded the TXSG Physical Fitness ribbon. Some special assignments may require additional physical fitness qualifications. 
 

You will take an oath of enlistment or appointment when you join, and you must fulfill that oath. Examples of some of your obligations include attending all drills, performing duties assigned to you, and participating successfully in training and continuing education. You must wear your uniform properly, and only when attending drills, other Texas State Guard (TXSG) functions, or as otherwise allowed by regulations and your commander. All rules of military courtesy will be observed while in uniform.

Basic Orientation Training (BOT) is required for ALL Texas State Guard (TXSG) personnel who do NOT have federal military service. This training is intended to introduce you to common military customs and courtesies, regulations, military topics, ranks, and relationships, in order for you to become acclimated to the military lifestyle and responsibilities. BOT does not have to be completed prior to joining the unit but normally should be scheduled and completed within the first year of service. Completion of BOT is a requirement for all non-prior service personnel before they can be considered for promotion. 
Prior service personnel are credited for their federal military service and therefore do not need to attend BOT.
 

In addition to the Guard’s regular training on our Mission Ready Packages (MRP’s), there are several aspects and avenues of training available for TXSG personnel. TXSG personnel is not eligible to attend schools conducted by federal military forces. We do however offer formal training through the Command and General Staff College (CGSC), Senior Leadership Course and the Basic Instructor Course.

Self-Study Courses – there are several self-study correspondence courses available online from FEMA, the National Fire Academy, and some other agencies that are required for all personnel. Some are required for promotion;  others are required for emergency management qualifications. All are free.

Professional Military Education – these are required for promotion in the TXSG. BOT is the ground level course for all non-prior service personnel. For enlisted personnel, the Airman Leadership Course sponsored by the TXSG Air Branch and available for self-study with a proctored written test is required for promotion to E5. The Basic NCO and Advanced NCO courses are conducted online through the TXSG email server. These courses take approximately six months to complete and are required for promotion to E6 and E7 respectively. For officers, the Basic Officer course is required up through O3 with the Advanced Officer course required for O4 and O5. Command and Staff College is required for O6.

Special Skills Training – the TXSG has many “Special Skills” areas for focused training. Dive Team members are required to obtain their own professional diver training at a certified facility at their own expense. Opportunities to train with other agency divers such as Texas Parks & Wildlife occur periodically.  Medical training for our Medical personnel is conducted in-house. Boating and Seamanship, Communications, Search & Rescue, and Security training is periodically scheduled with local agencies and other State Guard units. 

Additional Training Opportunities – As a state military organization, there is a wealth of courses hosted by the Texas Division of Emergency Management, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the Department of Homeland Security, and members of the National Homeland Security Consortium that are available at no cost to the member.  In some cases, these opportunities are funded for travel and lodging

 

Each Texas State Guard unit is usually assigned to a National Guard Armory that is located in their general vicinity. Routine drills and training will normally take place at that Armory, however, special training opportunities may require travel to other locations in the general geographic area or on occasion, in distant locations. Annual Training is conducted at one of the National Guard Bases in Texas such as Camp Swift in Bastrop, TX or Camp Bowie in Brownwood, TX. There may be additional opportunities to attend special training on a volunteer basis at other locations. Some training such as Annual Training will receive some State Active Duty pay. Other unfunded training opportunities may require the individual to bear all associated expenses but are generally voluntary.

No. The Texas State Guard (TXSG) is governed by Title 32 of the United States Code as a State Defense Force only. As such, the Governor is our Commander in Chief and we work solely at his direction. The Army National Guard may be activated to serve with the U.S. Army and the Air National Guard may be activated to serve with the U.S. Air Force, but the Texas State Guard would never be activated to serve with federal military forces.

No. The Texas State Guard (TXSG) is not an armed force, nor does it have any law enforcement authority. There may be an opportunity to qualify on pistol dependent upon unit training schedules.  TXSG members may have an opportunity to compete in the annual Texas Military Forces rifle and pistol competitions.

The Texas State Guard (TXSG) does have a variety of Texas Specific Military ribbons and medals that are awarded when appropriate and may be worn on your optional service or service dress uniforms. There are two service awards, one awarded after three years’ service and one awarded after five years’ service and every five years after that. There are qualification awards such as the Physical Fitness ribbon, the Enlisted Basic Military Education ribbon, and the Enlisted and Officer Professional Military Education Ribbons. Additionally, there are awards for achievement and meritorious service as well as bravery. TXSG personnel are encouraged to earn the Military Emergency Management Specialist (MEMS) Badge. This qualification is earned under the auspices of the Texas State MEMS Academy and the State Guard Association of the United States, and the Basic, Senior, and Master level badges may be worn on the field uniform.

Our standards are high. We want men and women who are joining us for the right reasons, and who are capable of making a real and needed contribution. The interview helps us determine those qualifications. The interview also helps ensure that the applicant is fully aware of his/her obligations as well as all aspects relating to membership in the organization. This is your chance to ask any still open questions you may have.

The enlistment or officer appointment process normally will take no longer than two months - perhaps more if any part of your application packet is incomplete or requires clarification. All enlistment or appointment orders originate in Austin and are processed through the Office of the Adjutant General. Be advised that the Texas State Guard (TXSG) forms become official Texas Military Department documents, and any misrepresentations or omissions are subject to penalties as defined under the Texas Military Code.

No. Non-members may not participate in drills or any other official Texas State Guard (TXSG) activities. When you are accepted in the TXSG you will be notified and given time to purchase uniforms. When processing is complete and you are sworn in, you are then subject to the Texas Code of Military Justice. While awaiting a review of your application, you may be allowed to attend some classroom training at the regularly scheduled drills as a guest but you will not be allowed to participate in any practical training until you are sworn into the unit.

The mandatory retirement age is 70. In accordance with the Texas State Guard (TXSG) regulations, a small percentage of the total strength of the TXSG may serve for short periods beyond the age of 70 with the approval of the Commanding General.

The Texas State Guard (TXSG) regulations are promulgated under the TXSG regulations pursuant to the Texas Code of Military Justice. (https://tmd.texas.gov/texas-military-department-policies-and-regulations)

Texas State Guard (TXSG) patches and Texas State Guard awards may be purchased at the Camp Mabry General Store. Texas State Guard shirts and Texas State Guard merchandise are also available from many individual TXSG units. We will speak with you more about this at your first official drill.

All Texas State Guard (TXSG) personnel are encouraged to become members of the State Guard Association of the United States (SGAUS) and the National Guard Association of Texas (NGAT) as a professional association, however, there is no mandatory requirement to join either of these organizations. Membership in SGAUS is a requirement to earn the Military Emergency Management Specialist (MEMS) Qualification since this qualification is awarded under that organization’s auspices.