Iowa Lakes Commemorates Veterans Day with Special Ceremony Featuring Chief Warrant Officer 3 Curtis Rubendall

Photo of Chief Warrant Officer 3 (CW3), Curtis Rubendall

(Estherville, Iowa) Iowa Lakes Community College proudly announces its upcoming annual Veterans Day program, scheduled for Friday, November 10, 2023, at 11:00 a.m. The event will be in the Janice K. Lund Performing Arts Center on the Estherville Campus, and the college invites the public to participate in this meaningful occasion.

“We are truly honored to recognize the brave men and women who have valiantly fought for the freedoms and liberties we all cherish. Iowa Lakes wants to convey our deep appreciation and utmost respect for Veterans through this event. The Veterans Day Ceremony is a heartfelt tribute to the service of all Americans who have answered the call to duty, including our esteemed student Veterans,” stated Tim Ireland, Veterans Center Director at Iowa Lakes.

This year’s keynote speaker is Chief Warrant Officer 3 (CW3) Curtis Rubendall, currently serving in the Iowa Army National Guard as an Instructor Pilot, Functional Check Pilot, and Safety Officer for the Army Aviation Support Facility in Davenport, Iowa.

CW3 Rubendall joined the Iowa Army National Guard in 1997 while attending high school in Aurelia, Iowa. After graduation, he attended basic training in Fort Jackson, S.C., followed by Advanced Individual Training in Fort Eustis, VA., to become a Blackhawk helicopter mechanic based out of Boone, Iowa. In 2001, CW3 Rubendall joined the ROTC program while attending the University of Northern Iowa in Cedar Falls, Iowa. After graduation, he was commissioned as a 1st Lieutenant and began flight school in Fort Rucker (now Fort Novosel), Ala., in 2004. After flight school, he was a MEDEVAC team leader based out of Waterloo, Iowa, and deployed to Iraq in 2008-2009. Shortly after being promoted to Captain and becoming a Maintenance Test Pilot in the Blackhawk helicopter, he deployed to Afghanistan in 2012-2013. After returning from Afghanistan, he accepted a company command position as the commander for an aviation maintenance company out of Boone, Iowa, and deployed to Kosovo in 2013-2014. Returning from Kosovo, he reverted to CW2 and joined the Security and Support Aviation Company based in Waterloo, Iowa, as a Lakota helicopter pilot in 2015. He then became a full-time Functional Check Pilot, Instructor Pilot, Instrument Flight Examiner, and Safety Officer in Davenport, Iowa. His unit was most recently deployed to the Southern Border for a year, returning in October of 2022, during which he served as the Company Maintenance Officer and managed a program that flew over 3,000 hours in support of border security. He lives in Long Grove, Iowa, with his girlfriend Jennifer and their 3-year-old daughter, Ava.

CW3 Rubendall has conducted countless missions to include MEDEVAC, border security, domestic operations in support of law enforcement, static displays/fly-ins around the Midwest, Vice President and President security, COVID-19 testing, and most recently spent two weeks in South Dakota supporting Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) and local law enforcement agents with Sturgis Rally security. CW3 Rubendall has over 26 years of military service and has flown over 3,700 flight hours.

The Master of Ceremonies will be Lorenzia Henderson, who brings his military background and accomplishments to the event, including 32 years of military service, seven years in the Marine Corps from 1978 to 1985, 25 years in the Army from 1991 to 2017, and a Master Sergeant E-8 (Ret). Additionally, the Estherville VFW John W. Bradford Post 3388 will be responsible for presenting the colors.

The program will also feature captivating musical performances by the Iowa Lakes Choir and Band, directed by Professors Carol Ayres and Brett Fuelberth.

After the ceremony, Iowa Lakes will offer a complimentary lunch to Veterans and their spouses in The Max dining hall from 12:00 to 12:30 p.m.

Iowa Lakes remains dedicated to creating a military and Veteran-friendly environment and has accumulated many awards due to a solid commitment to serving the military community, including 2022-23 Military Friendly School® Silver, 2022-2023 Military Spouse Friendly School, Top Veteran-Friendly School from U.S. Veterans Magazine for seven years, 2021-22 Top 10 Military Friendly® School, and CHAMP designation.

For those unable to attend the ceremony in person, the event will be streamed by clicking iowalakes.edu.