Story by Capt. Andrew Layton
Michigan National Guard
MACOMB COUNTY, Mich. -- Lt. Governor Gilchrist joined ranking members of the Michigan National Guard for a ribbon cutting ceremony to mark the grand opening of the Kelly Johnson Joint All-Domain Innovation Center at Selfridge Research Park.
“Michigan continues to bring together the greatest academic, commercial and military minds to develop new ways of protecting our servicemembers and securing our nation,” said Lt. Governor Gilchrist. “The Kelly Johnson Join All-Domain Innovation Center will allow the Michigan National Guard and our partners in the private sector to build upon their strong reputations of innovation to further push the boundaries of what is possible in pursuit of our national defense.”
The ceremony marks an important milestone as Michigan continues to draw attention from Department of Defense decision makers as a thought leader, piloting future capabilities and providing unrivaled training opportunities that leverage Michigan’s unique blend of geography, people, and technology-based industry.
“The purpose of the Kelly Johnson Joint All-Domain Innovation Center is to provide opportunities (and a location) for all military members, government, and industry professionals to research, problem solve, and collaborate in direct support of state, national, and Michigan leadership objectives,” said Maj. Gen. Paul Rogers, Adjutant General and Director of the Michigan Department of Military and Veterans Affairs.
The innovation center has been named in tribute to Michigan native Clarence “Kelly” Johnson, Lockheed’s master aeronautical engineer, who contributed to the successful design of dozens of U.S. military aircraft including the F-80 Shooting Star, the U-2 Dragon Lady, and the SR-71 Blackbird.
Michigan has long been an engine for innovation within the Department of Defense. Michigan’s close ties to the defense industry date back to World War II and the “Arsenal of Democracy.” The Kelly Johnson Joint All-Domain Innovation Center will link this proven track record with future initiatives to defend the air, land, sea, space, and cyberspace warfighting domains.
“The Kelly Johnson Joint All-Domain Innovation Center will align Michigan’s national assets such as the National All-Domain Warfighting Center at Camp Grayling and Alpena Combat Readiness Training Center with senior leadership objectives,” said Brig. Gen. Bryan Teff, Assistant Adjutant General – Air and commander of the Michigan Air National Guard. “It provides a venue to shape the future by solving problems and applying technology solutions, enabling service members and industry partners to solve crucial needs.”