Ron Stafford has $20,000 for the taking. Or at least for your signature.
Ok, it’s not his money, but he can acquire it for you.
Yes, there’s a catch. The signature enrolls you into the Army National Guard. But Stafford, who is now the recruiter for Logan and south Yell counties, says he has a good reason to want you to do that.
“When I joined the Guard changed my life and coming from this area, seeing what’s come out of this area, I’d like to help change someone else’s life,” said Stafford. “That’s my whole motivation.”
The 20 grand? It’s an enlistment bonus.
“For the same job I joined for. When I joined I got a handshake,” said Stafford.
The money is an enlistee’s to do with as he or she sees fit, not reserved for college.
That, by the way, is also covered, tuition and fees, by the Guard if the enlistee opts to take advantage of the opportunity, all while being paid up to $975 a month while in college, Stafford said.
“It’s a pretty big deal for one weekend a month,” said Stafford.
Stafford joined the Guard in 2011, between his junior and senior years of high school in Magazine and has since reached the rank of Sergeant. He always knew what role he wanted to fill and he is now in it.
“When I left I was tiny, no muscle tone whatsoever. I was a dweeb,” said Stafford. “When I came back I actually got to play on the football team and I was a track stud (and) before I couldn’t run at all.”
As a Guardsman, Stafford was named Soldier of the Year in 2013 while stationed in Ozark and in 2016 was promoted to sergeant and has since won the German Armed Forces badge for military proficiency.
“(Recruiting) is something that I’ve always wanted to do,” he said last week. “Even though my boss thinks I’m nuts.”
Stafford was an assistant recruiter in 2015 but in July of last year he was promoted to recruiter for Alma, Mountainburg and Mulberry.
In October he became full time, and in January he took over the area that covers Booneville, Magazine, Paris, Subiaco, Scranton and Western Yell school districts.
So far Stafford has signed four seniors up for service to the country. That doesn’t include his wife, who is currently at basic training.