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Feature Stories

NEWS | Feb. 20, 2020

Bryan, Ohio reporter, Guardsman delivers the news in southwest Asia

By Story by Staff Sgt. Erin Johns 38th Infantry Division

A Bryan, Ohio resident serving with Task Force Spartan as the deputy information officer possesses many talents, including working as a reporter for Bryan Publishing Company.

Indiana National Guard Maj. Lynn Thompson graduated from West Unity, Ohio’s Hilltop High School in 1987. Enlisting in the Army launched him on an adventure around the world as he developed unique professional and personal relationships.

Yet Thompson’s adventure began out of desperation.

"I joined the Army because I needed a job,” said Thompson.

Since then Thompson has served 25 years in the Army. He first served as an enlisted medic in Korea with the 2nd Infantry Division, then as a medical noncommissioned officer in the 25th Infantry Division. After serving in several officer positions throughout the Indiana Army National Guard, he’s now entrenched in the information operations world.

Thompson sees a strong link between reporting and being an information operations officer as part of the Task Force Spartan staff.

Information officers analyze, understand, visualize and describe different styles of communication to present an overall view of the information environment to commanders of their organizations.

Reporters use similar skills to process information and produce factual stories to the public, helping to maintain an educated population.

“Win by not quitting. Use critical thinking. The Army has challenged me to come up with stuff I didn't know I could,” said Thompson.

As a staff officer Thompson uses the military decision-making process, a planning tool used by military staff before pushing orders to warfighters on the front.

"MDMP is awesome. The military decision-making process has provided me with a methodology to break down information to my news audience using the bottom line up front approach, research, analysis and prediction. Being a staff officer is the same as being a reporter," said Thompson.

In Ohio, Thompson works with other reporters and editors who have served in the armed forces—including a Vietnam veteran, a West Point graduate and a U.S. Navy public affairs officer—to provide objective reporting.

"Collaboration and networking is a team sport. As a group we get better plans and results," said Thompson.