IMCOM welcomes new command sergeant major
December 13, 2013
SAN ANTONIO (Dec 12, 2013) --- Pledging to "give everything I have" to Soldiers, their Families, civilians, veterans and wounded warriors, Command Sgt. Maj. Jeffrey S. Hartless assumed the responsibilities of the U.S. Army Installation Management Command's most senior enlisted advisor in a ceremony at IMCOM's Fort Sam Houston Theatre.
Hartless takes over for departing IMCOM Command Sgt. Maj. Earl Rice. Rice is retiring after 32 years' service in the U.S. Army.
Formerly command sergeant major of IMCOM's Europe region, Hartless said the headquarters is to focus on supporting the regions and the garrison command teams. The garrisons are "the tip of the spear" in delivering services, he said.
His experience in IMCOM-Europe will now benefit the command as a whole, according to LTG Mike Ferriter, IMCOM commander. "We are blessed to have Command Sgt. Maj. Hartless on our team," he said, calling Hartless "the perfect leader at the perfect time."
Rice called Hartless a "personal friend and awesome leader. All … who know Jeff Hartless know of his dedication."
Ferriter gave the noncommissioned officer's sword to Hartless after receiving it from Rice, symbolically passing responsibility in front of a theater filled with garrison commanders and command sergeants major in town for IMCOM's annual leadership conference, as well as family members, friends and headquarters staff.
The role of IMCOM command sergeant major carries great responsibility, Ferriter said. Leading IMCOM takes total dedication to our Soldiers, civilians and their Families. "Command Sgt. Maj. Rice carried the load as if it were easy, and when it got hard he would look over and ask me if he could carry some of my load," he said.
Beginning his farewell remarks, Rice stepped to the American flag and touched its fringe. "This is what it's all about," he said. "We get to dedicate our lives to defending this great nation."
"This certainly isn't about what we're doing here [holding a ceremony], it's about the unfailing leadership shown by our [garrison] command teams," Rice said.
The 82nd Airborne Division, where he spent much of his career, calls itself America's 911 service, Rice said.
Just as the 82nd has to be ready at a moment's notice to defend the nation, he learned garrison staffs have to be ready to respond on the communities they operate. "Garrison commanders and command sergeants major are the 911 force on-call team on the installation level," he said.
"I am proud to have served alongside each and every one of you."
Hartless was born in Lynchburg, Va., and graduated from Amherst County High School in 1981. He entered the U.S. Army in April, 1983, completing Basic Training, Advanced Individual Training and Airborne School at Fort Benning, Ga.
During his 29 years of service, Hartless has served with the 75th Ranger Regiment; Special Operations Aviation Regiment; 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault); 173d Airborne Brigade; 503rd Infantry; United States Army Garrison, Fort Polk; Warrior Transition Brigade, Walter Reed Army Medical Center; and United States Army Garrison Vicenza, Italy. He has completed multiple combat tours.
Rice assumed duties as IMCOM command sergeant major on Feb. 20, 2012. He enlisted in November 1981 and received basic and Advanced Individual Training at Fort Benning, Ga. Rice held numerous command sergeant major positions including XVIII Airborne Corps and Fort Bragg and United States Forces Iraq.
About the U.S. Army Installation Management Command:
IMCOM handles the day-to-day operations of U.S. Army installations around the globe -- We are the Army's Home. Army installations are communities that provide many of the same types of services expected from any small city. Fire, police, housing, and child-care are just some of the things IMCOM does in Army communities every day. Our professional workforce strives to deliver on the commitments of the Army Family Covenant, honor the sacrifices of military Families, and enable the Army Force Generation cycle.
Our vision: Ready & Resilient Army: Provide Soldiers, Families and Civilians with a quality of life commensurate with the quality of their service.
Our mission: IMCOM will synchronize, integrate, and deliver installation services and sustain facilities in support of Senior Commanders in order to enable a ready and resilient Army.
To learn more about IMCOM: