Southern Regional Medical Commander Maj. Gen. Jimmie O. Keenan passes the colors of the U.S. Army Medical Department Activity and Martin Army Community Hospital to Col. Scott B. Avery July 12 at York Field.

FORT BENNING, Ga. (July 24, 2013) -- Martin Army Community Hospital marked a transition in leadership July 12 with a change of command and responsibility ceremony at Fort Benning's York Field.

The ceremony was a culmination of the long career of outgoing hospital commander, Col. Timothy E. Lamb, and welcomed a new incoming commander, Col. Scott B. Avery, who most recently served as Northwest Medical Region's chief of staff.

The joint ceremony included honors to the reviewing officer, Maj. Gen. Jimmie Keenan, commanding general of the Southern Regional Medical Command and commanding general of the United States Army Nurse Corps, and symbolized the lineage and honor of the U.S. Army Medical Command unit.

The joint ceremony included a change of responsibility for the command's senior enlisted noncommissioned officer.

Acting command sergeant major, Master Sgt. William Ott relinquished responsibility to Command Sgt. Maj. Napoleon Noguerapayan during the double ceremony.

Avery became a Medical Service Corps Officer in June 1988 after graduating from the University of Washington, where he received a bachelor's degree in political science.

During his 25-year career, he has been deployed to Germany, Kosovo and two tours in Iraq.

"I'm extremely impressed by your (Martin Army Family) abilities … and humbled by the Army's confidence in me to lead this organization in a time like no other in Army medicine and our country's history," Avery said.

He thanked Lamb for showing him the secrets and challenges of his new role.

Avery takes control of the medical activity on post at a time when construction is underway to build a 745,000-square foot hospital to replace the aging Martin Army Community Hospital.

The new hospital, at a cost of $363.7 million, will have eight stories in the main hospital building and two clinics and is on target to be completed by May 2014 and open by November 2014.

According to officials from Health Facilities Planning Agency, about 67 percent of the construction has been completed.

In his outgoing remarks, Lamb said the successes of his two year tenure were aided by his great military, civilian, volunteer and contract staff, while emphasizing support, teamwork and trust.

"Cooperation from MCoE and community partners were key in standing up the Family Medical Home in the main hospital, the North Columbus Medical Home and the care of over 500 Warriors in Transition," he said.

Lamb said his team was also instrumental in bringing prevention programs like suicide and substance abuse to the forefront, while building patient trust with patients.

Page last updated Thu July 25th, 2013 at 10:43