When he was recently chosen to serve as Alabama Senior Enlisted Leader for the Alabama National Guard, Command Chief Master Sergeant David Bullard partially relocated to Montgomery. Though he still heads to his north-Alabama home on a lot of weekends, he’s also enjoyed connecting with the capital city.
Are you from Montgomery? I grew up and spent most of my life in Hueytown, Alabama. I moved to my farm in Gadsden in 2013. In 2019, I was selected as the State Command Chief for the Alabama Air National Guard Headquarters in Montgomery. This role was part-time, traditional guardsman. In October 2020, I was selected to my current position as Senior Enlisted Leader (SEL) for the Alabama National Guard, which is a full-time position. I now reside in Montgomery during the week and go to my home in Gadsden on weekends when my schedule permits. For me, I remember Montgomery as a beautiful historic city on the way to the beach. I fondly remember occasional side trips off the highway, driving the historic streets of downtown and of course around the Capitol and government buildings. The real value of Montgomery is taking time to visit and stay in the downtown hotels, walk to sites, enjoy the great restaurants and meet the people. It is a great experience to now feel that I am part of this city through my assignment here as a military service member.
When did you first join the Alabama National Guard? In July of 1983, I enlisted in the 117th Tactical Reconnaissance Wing in Birmingham; it’s now the 117th Air Refueling Wing.
What motivated you to serve? I have always been attracted to civil service careers. My father served in the Naval Reserve while I was growing up and that first opened my mind to serving in the military. After I joined and began serving part-time in the Air National Guard, I pursued a civilian career as a firefighter. I retired with 28 years of service as a Homewood, Alabama, Firefighter in 2013.
What are your primary duties in your position with the Alabama National Guard? I am the principal advisor to the Adjutant General of Alabama National Guard (Major General Sheryl Gordon) regarding all matters that affect our enlisted force. My responsibilities include readiness, training, recruiting, retention of our service members, resources and communication of the enlisted soldiers and airmen.
What is the mission of the Alabama National Guard? The National Guard is the only organization in the U.S. military charged with both a federal and state mission. As the Alabama National Guard, Governor Kay Ivey is the Commander in Chief with a mission to respond in events of natural disaster or any domestic emergency. In our federal mission, we deploy in support of the national defense of our country, serving under the president through the Department of Defense.
What’s your favorite thing about your work with the Guard? Serving in an amazing organization full of amazing people.
What are your interests outside of work? Hiking, gardening, and I’m a college football fan.
“The Alabama National Guard is a reflection of the citizens of our great state. Our Citizen Soldiers remain true to historic roots and serve as warriors every day in their home communities all over. The Alabama National Guard soldiers and airmen are always ready and always there, presently serving or waiting on the next call.”