410th CSB changes command
June 14, 2013
JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-FORT SAM HOUSTON, Texas (June 14, 2013) -- Command of the 410th Contracting Support Brigade here changed hands in a ceremony June 14 at the Army Medical Department Center and School Museum Medal of Honor Walk.
Col. Rick Harger assumed command from Col. William Sanders in a ceremony officiated by Brig. Gen. Ted Harrison, the Expeditionary Contracting Command commanding general.
Harger comes to the 410th CSB following a senior service college fellowship at the University of Texas at Austin. Prior to that, he served with the Heavy Brigade Combat Team under Program Executive Office Ground Combat Systems in Warren, Mich., where he was responsible for fleet management and foreign military sales for Iraq.
"I am honored, humbled and excited to take command of the 410th CSB and return to contracting after working in program management for the last several years. During my transition, the Soldiers and civilians of the 410th have impressed me with their dedication and professionalism," said Harger, who also credits Sanders for his assistance and advice in the changeover.
The Del Rio, Texas native arrives at the brigade as the contracting community prepares to enter its historically busy season in the final quarter of the fiscal year. In a year beset with fiscal uncertainty and a pending furlough beginning in July, Harger remains committed to ensuring the acquisition needs of Soldiers are met.
"Customer support has always been critical in the contracting career field. With the fiscal constraints brought on by sequestration, it is more important than ever that we work closely with our customers to understand their requirements and ensure they know what is required of them," Harger said. "It takes a combined effort between the contracting office and the customer to ensure the customer's needs are fulfilled. This coordination and collaboration becomes especially essential as we approach the last quarter of the fiscal year."
Still in the process of accomplishing his initial assessment of the 410th CSB, the new commander said focus will remain on those elements critical to executing the contracting mission and strengthening the Army profession.
"We will focus on training and certification of the Soldiers and civilians, ensuring our work environment continues to be free from prejudice and harassment of any kind, and collaborating with our customers to ensure they receive the best contracting support available," Harger said.
The 410th CSB is responsible for planning and executing contingency contracting support for the U.S. Army South in support of Army and joint operations throughout the Southern Command area of responsibility. It is a subordinate command to the Expeditionary Contracting Command at Redstone Arsenal near Huntsville, Ala.
Harger enlisted in the Army in 1983 as a Field Artillery surveyor. He earned his commission in 1989 through the ROTC at the University of Alaska at Fairbanks, where he earned a Bachelor of Business Administration in management. He entered commissioned service as a Transportation Corps officer in 1991 and served in a variety of positions from platoon leader to commander before joining the Army Acquisition Corps in 1999. His acquisition experience spans assignments in professional military education, procurement stateside, overseas and in forward deployed areas as well as product management of the total life cycle system support for all field feeding, field services, cargo aerial delivery, and shelter systems acquired by the Army.
Having completed all necessary levels of professional military education, Harger also holds a Master of Science in public administration from Central Michigan University, and a Master of Science in contract and acquisition management from the Naval Postgraduate School.
Sanders departs for an assignment as the director of operational test and evaluation at U.S. Special Operations Command at MacDill, Fla., after serving as the commander of the 410th CSB since July 2010.