Staff Report

Congratulations

Genevie Anna Lemieux of Charlotte received her bachelor’s in public relations, graduating cum laude from the University of Rhode Island at the end of May. Lemieux was one of 3,600 undergraduates at the university’s 136th commencement ceremonies.

Holden Batchelder of Charlotte is headed to James Madison University in Harrisonburg, Va., for the fall semester. Batchelder plans to study business management.

Internship success

Will Hagedorn

Will Hagedorn

Jonan Story

Jonan Story

Vermont Parks Forever has completed its eighth season of funding a student internship at Mt. Philo State Park, the oldest state park in Vermont.

This internship program memorializes Will Hagedorn of Charlotte, who grew up hiking and sledding on Mt. Philo. During college he worked at Mt. Philo State Park as an intern, a job he loved.

Hagedorn died unexpectedly in 2013, at the age of 24. In his memory, his family created the William Cameron Hagedorn Mt. Philo Forever Fund at Vermont Parks Forever, which raises grants and donations for Vermont State Parks.

This year’s intern, Jonan Story, also grew up hiking and sledding on the mountain before joining park staff to learn public service and land management this summer.

“Jonan has been a huge asset,” said park manager Nathanael Hancock. “This internship is imperative to our work here at Mt. Philo State Park.”

Each year, former interns return as staff, which indicates the success of this annual internship.

“The unique opportunities that interns receive goes beyond fostering independence and a love for serving our community.” said Colleen Metzler, Mt. Philo’s assistant park manager. “They learn leadership skills from previous interns that return each year. The internship program instills pride and hard work in our interns that translates to long-term success as park attendants year after year.”

To make a contribution to support the fund for the program’s next intern, visit vermontparksforever.org/mt-philo-fund.

Air Force success
Brig. Gen. Jocelyn J. Schermerhorn, daughter of David Schermerhorn of Charlotte and Joan Johnson of Oxbow, Maine, recently relinquished command of the 1st Special Operations Wing on July 21, during a ceremony at Hurlburt Field, Fla., and took over as director of special operations command for the Air Force Special Operations Command.

As the director of operations, she is responsible for implementing and directing operational command policy for Air Force Special Operations Command’s worldwide special operations units including 20,800 personnel, approximately 300 aircraft and $17 billion in assets.

In April, Schermerhorn was confirmed by the U.S. Senate for appointment to the grade of brigadier general, United States Air Force. She will be promoted to brigadier general in late winter or early spring.

A native of Charlotte, Schermerhorn graduated from Charlotte Central School in 1986 and Champlain Valley Union High School in 1990.

As a 27-year Air Force officer, Schermerhorn became the first woman to take command of the 1st Special Operations Wing when she took command in June 2020. The 1st Special Operations Wing is the most-deployed wing in the Air Force, and as commander of the wing, Schermerhorn also served as the installation commander at Hurlburt Field.

While in command of the 1st Special Operations Wing, Schermerhorn was responsible for preparing Air Force special operations forces for worldwide missions in support of joint and coalition special operations. The wing’s mission includes planning, posturing and executing precision strike, specialized mobility, and intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance.

The wing employs more than 80 aircraft, supporting a variety of special operations missions including direct action, unconventional warfare, special reconnaissance, counterterrorism, personnel recovery, psychological operations and information operations. As installation commander, Schermerhorn oversaw Hurlburt Field’s base support for the wing’s four groups and 26 squadrons, as well as over 40 tenant units, including Headquarters Air Force Special Operations Command.

Schermerhorn entered the Air Force in 1995 as a distinguished graduate of the Reserve Officer Training Corps program at Colorado State University, where she earned a bachelor of science degree in civil engineering. She earned her wings as a distinguished graduate of navigator training at Randolph Air Force Base, Texas, and also holds a master’s of business administration and a master’s of strategic studies.

She has served as an evaluator navigator and a combat systems officer, has commanded at various levels, has participated in a number of worldwide contingency operations and is a veteran of operations Joint Guard, Allied Force, Enduring Freedom, Iraqi Freedom and Resolute Support.

At a media event shortly after taking command in 2020, Schermerhorn said her gender is “a fact, but not one that defines who I am as a leader. I want to make sure that women throughout Air Force Special Operations Command recognize that there are no barriers. And if that’s something I can do in this role, that’s a win.”

In May, she was honored by the national Daughters of the American Revolution with its Women in American History Medal and in August was inducted into the Okaloosa County Women’s Hall of Fame in Fort Walton Beach, Fla.