Abbott swears in new Operation Lone Star chief in Mission

Gov. Greg Abbott held a swearing-in ceremony Sunday, Oct. 24, 2021, for Texas Military Department Deputy Adjutant General Monie Ulis in Mission. (Courtesy photo)

The man who’ll be leading Gov. Greg Abbott’s Operation Lone Star, which aims to combat smuggling at the Texas-Mexico border, was sworn in by the governor in Mission on Sunday.

Texas Military Department Deputy Adjutant General Monie Ulis will now lead coordinated border missions for Operation Lone Star.

The operation launched in March with the Texas Department of Public Safety to combat the smuggling of people and drugs into Texas.

Tracy Norris, Ulis’ predecessor, was also at the ceremony.

“Monie Ulis is a courageous, devoted leader with 35 years of extensive experience in the Texas Army National Guard, making him a fantastic choice to serve as Deputy Adjutant General,” Abbott said in a news release. “Texas has taken unprecedented steps to secure the border through Operation Lone Star, and the Texas National Guard has played a pivotal role in confronting the crisis in the federal government’s absence.

“Under the leadership of Deputy Adjutant General Ulis, we will continue to respond in full force to address this border crisis and keep Texans safe.”

Abbott’s presence in the Rio Grande Valley on Sunday is one of several this year, with his visits ramping up as he ramps up his criticism of the Biden administration’s handling of immigration matters, making his trips to the region a common occurrence now.