He has made a fast career and is now Sweden’s youngest regimental commander. Meet Colonel Jonny Lindfors who will make the Armed Forces grow in Boden.
When Jonny received the job offer from the army chief, he accepted immediately.
– This is one of the best places you can work in the army. It’s one of the crown jewels, I would say. It is a very old, rich and traditional band and it is traditionally a real honor to get this job, so of course I wanted it, he says.
He stepped into the service as a 43-year-old on October 1, 2018 and became the army’s youngest regimental commander. He has a large mandate to make decisions and is in charge of a war organization that can accommodate a total of around 4,000 people.
– I feel very secure, not because I master everything myself but because I feel that my employees master everything. There is like nothing we can not solve together, says Jonny.
For Jonny, the job is very much about problem solving and leadership, trade-offs and clarity.
What he appreciates most is the varied tasks and that he gets to meet a lot of people.
– I think I am an individual who sees people. I have a strong belief that all military work is a team sport and it is based on relationships. My role as a leader is to make people grow and do their best. All people feel good about being seen and appreciated, he says.
Boden’s garrison is facing a growth spurt for the first time in a very long time. Now they are waiting for the defense policy orientation bill that will describe the details this autumn, but according to Jonny, it is clear that there will be a sharp increase in the number of military units and branches in Boden’s garrison.
– It feels fantastic. In fact, the entire Armed Forces has only shrunk and disbanded throughout my career, so it is incredibly exciting to be involved and try to turn this around, a challenge that we are happy to take on. However, one must not forget the seriousness behind the growth, a deteriorating external situation and the great powers’ struggle for the Arctic demands that the nations in the North take their security policy responsibility, says Jonny.
Even if it does not happen overnight, Jonny believes that the people of Bodens will notice a big difference in the Armed Forces’ presence in Boden over the next five to ten years.
– Then there will be twice as many conscripts in the barracks in the garrison units, more civilian employees, we will make more noise and I think that we will then have become so many that it is noticeable in society.
Jonny got the job in Boden just when he and his family were moving home after a year of studying at Army War College in Pennsylvania, USA. They all planned to live in Boden, but the recruitment dragged on and the sons Viktor and William managed to find their way back to an everyday life with school and sports teams in Stockholm. Since Jonny travels a lot and the appointment expires in 2022, the family decided that it was not worth pulling the children up again. So the family lives in Stockholm, Jonny lives in Boden and they see each other on the weekends. When they are here, they swim at Nordpoolen indoor waterpark, explore nature and forts or fish together. On weekday evenings, Jonny likes to take a ride on the ski track or a trip down to the ice rink to watch hockey.
– I think that Närhetsliv is a very good description of Boden because it is close to sports, nature areas and also to the metropolitan Luleå. I like it here and would very much like to live here if I knew I would stay.
Here he experiences a more cordial atmosphere than in Stockholm and for Jonny the proximity to nature always wins over the metropolitan lifestyle.
– It’s recovery for me. I get strength from being out in the woods, taking a walk, exercising or grilling sausages. #
Jonny Lindfors / 44 years, colonel.
Title / Garrison Commander of the Boden Garrison and Regiment Commander of the Norrbotten Regiment I 19.
Lives / Boden, but the family lives in Järfälla in Stockholm.
Family / Wife Maria and sons William, 12 years and Viktor, 14 years.