Ridge Runner

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Ridge Runner provides a dynamic and realistic exercise platform for SOCOM as well as corresponding community of interest partners to conduct irregular warfare/resistance operating concepts within the State of West Virginia in addition to other State Partnership Program states. Ridge Runner enables SOF commanders, allies and partner nations to train on mission essential tasks also to assess readiness while enhancing the nation's strategic irregular warfare capabilities.

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Ridge Runner is supported entirely through the West Virginia National Guard with dedicated funding for staff and programmatic elements. The DoD Irregular Warfare Center (IWC) is signing an MOU with the Ridge Runner Program to make it a key piece to developing the strategic doctrine, operational approaches, and planning models, along with the tactical implementation and experimentation around Irregular Warfare. Ridge Runner is signing a MOU with USASOC and 1st SFC(A) to integrate RR capability with their Special Operations Forces Training and Experimentation Command.

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The West Virginia National Guard's Ridge Runner Irregular Warfare Training Program offers a complete solution to address growing demand for allied and partner nation training that meets the intent of the 2022 National Defense Strategy.

Ridge Runner Irregular Warfare Exercise 23-01 took place in June 2023, which validated C Co. 5/19th, and had over 420 participants which included allies and partners from Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, Poland, United Kingdom, Romania, Republic of Georgia, and Moldova.

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Ridge Runner Irregular Warfare Training Program can address the following

  • Validate National Guard and Active Component SOF elements for deployments in support of SOTF 10.1 or other European-centric missions.


  • Support partner development in the Resistance Operating Concept (ROC) Observe and support targeted exercise events in various theaters of operation (e.g., Trojan Footprint)


  • Incorporate Research and Development/Experimentation for MILDEC, Maritime infiltration and resupply along with other R&D projects through our partnership with DEVCOM and industry.


  • A place to train and/or test that is less likely to be compromised.​

Quick Facts

  • Doctrine-based and scalable from ODA to SOTF level with customized operational design for geographic orientation


  • Comprehensive urban and rural scenarios with existing infrastructure to address complex problem sets for the 21st century


  • 400-year Road to War timeline for area study and mission planning


  • Integrated information operations through Event Driven Broadcast Simulations (EDBS)


  • ​​​Whole-of-government exercise participation with industry/civil authorities in permissive, semi- permissive and non-permissive scenarios​​


LTC​ MICHAEL SUSICK                                          

Director, Ridge Runner IW Program                        

Phone:  910-580-8138                                             

Email :  michael.j.susick.mil@army.mil                   


Deputy Director, Ridge Runner IW Program​

​Phone:  304-545-6241

Email : jason.c.smith28.mil@army.mil


Chief of Staff, Ridge Runner IW Program

Phone:  719-602-9060

Email : matthew.s.flora.mil@army.mil


J3, Ridge Runner IW Program

Phone:  760-277-7938

Email : dwight.l.bundy.mil@army.mil

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