Kansas Army National Guard commander no ’90-day-wonder’

The Associated Press

The new commander of the Kansas Army National Guard can still recall when family members called him “a 90-day wonder” when he joined the Army more than 25 years ago.

Brig. Gen. John Davoren said his uncle and cousin, who had served during World War II as staff sergeants, gave him a hard time when he was commissioned through the Reserve Officers’ Training Corps, calling him the common derogatory term for those rapidly commissioned as officers.

Years later, that uncle attended Davoren’s general officer promotion ceremony.

“Well, I guess this officer thing is working out for you,” he told Davoren.

Davoren has been named the new commander of the Kansas Army National Guard, taking over for Brig. Gen. Jonathan Small, who is retiring.

In the role, Davoren is responsible for ensuring that the Army Guard forces are fully trained to support their dual state-federal missions.

“It’s a wider scale than my past duties,” he said.

Davoren was born in Kansas City and raised on a farm between Tonganoxie and Basehor. He graduated from Basehor High School in 1971 and was commissioned from the ROTC program at The University of Kansas in 1976.

He served on active duty in Kentucky and then in Hawaii before returning to Kansas. Along the way, he won the Meritorious Service Medal with two oak leaf clusters and the Army Commendation Medal.