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9/11 inspires YPG's Werner to antiterrorism field
With only two months at Yuma Proving Ground, Karen Werner, antiterrorism officer in the Plans and Operations Directorate, finds her job quite unique, for she has the opportunity to coordinate with many different counterparts in the antiterrorism community to ensure that measures are in place to protect the YPG population and to prevent terrorism.
Hailing to YPG from Washington, D.C. where she was a communications analyst for the Government Accountability Office on the Defense Capabilities and Management Team from January 2008 to September 2012, Werner was looking for a job that would allow her to work with antiterrorism and operations and found exactly what she wanted to be doing.
Why would she want this kind of a job?
“On the worst day of the U.S. history, September 11, 2001, I was near the Pentagon in Crystal City and felt the plane hit the Pentagon. This was the day I decided to join the National Guard and then the Reserve as a military police officer,” said Werner. ‘‘What took place on that date is what inspired me to follow in this type of work. My interest in antiterrorism stems from that, and I still serve as a Reservist in a military police battalion.''
Werner says that what she likes most about her job is that she doesn't always sit behind a desk and do paperwork. “I get the opportunity to get out and meet people outside of my realm,” said Werner.
“My job is a very interesting field,” says Werner, who also worked in the Antiterrorism Division in Europe for one year. Werner said that the most rewarding experience in her military career has been when she served a one-year tour of duty in Baghdad, Iraq, where her unit mission was to protect senior leaders in theater.
A dedicated employee in the antiterrorism field, Werner's inspiration to succeed in the workforce comes stems from the time she spent overseas. “I learned there are forces and individuals that oppose our country's way of life, and that's why it is important that we work hard to ensure that we prevail against them,'' said Werner.
Although the ‘‘antiterroism field'' is an extremely influential part of her life, Werner does take time out to enjoy life by taking in long-distance running and exploring the genealogy topic in her spare time.