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Antigo Native Named Head Of Wisconsin National Guard

U.S. Air Force

The new leader of the Wisconsin National Guard will be an Antigo native.

On Monday, Gov. Tony Evers announced he’s selected Brig. Gen. Paul Knapp to become Adjutant General of the Guard and lead the Department of Military Affairs.

Knapp replaces former Guard chief Donald Dunbar, who resigned after improperly handling allegations of sexual assault in the Guard.

Knapp grew up in Antigo and is now in his 28th year of military service.

Currently, Knapp is the Mobilization Assistant to the Commander of Air Force Nuclear Weapons Center, based at Kirtland Air Force Base in New Mexico.  He directs the Air Force’s nuclear modernization, acquisition and sustainment programs.

“Being appointed as the Wisconsin Adjutant General by Governor Evers is a dream job for this kid from Antigo, Wisconsin, who chose a military career,” Knapp said in a statement.  “I am humbled, grateful, and privileged to serve the professional soldiers, airmen and civilians of our amazing state.”

In the same statement, Evers calls Knapp “a dynamic, proven leader.”

Evers called for, and received, Dunbar’s resignation in December.  A review of the Wisconsin National Guard found failures in its handling of sexual assault, sexual harassment, and retaliation allegations.

Ben worked as the Special Topics Correspondent at WXPR from September 2019 until November 2021. He now contributes occasionally to WXPR. During his full-time employment, his main focus was reporting on environment and natural resources issues in northern Wisconsin and Michigan's Upper Peninsula as part of The Stream, a weekly series.