Col. Jonathan Sweet, commander, 780th Military Intelligence Brigade; Brig. Gen. Robert Walter, deputy commanding general, Intelligence Security Command, Fort Belvoir, Va.; Fort Meade Garrison Commander Col. Edward C. Rothstein; Paul Karmazinski, Akima Construction; and Randy Winemiller, Baltimore District, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers break ground Tuesday for the 780th MI BDE's new 46,000-square-foot facility that will serve as the brigade's headquarters, operations center and training facility.

FORT GEORGE G. MEADE, Md. -- The next phase of the 780th Military Intelligence Brigade's history began Feb. 21 as officials broke ground for the newly formed brigade's headquarters facility during a ceremony on Fort Meade.

The 46,000-square-foot facility will serve as the brigade's headquarters, operations center and training facility. Construction is expected to be completed by the end of this year.

"Today marks the next step in our brigade's path to become fully operational," said Col. Jonathan E. Sweet, commander of the 780th MI. "This facility will allow us to accomplish our mission -- to provide proactive cyber defense and to conduct full spectrum cyber operations for our nation."

Members of the U.S. Army Intelligence and Security Command, 780th MI Brigade; the Army Corps of Engineers, Baltimore District; and the Fort Meade garrison took part in the occasion, further enabling the Army's goal of providing the force with the best in cyber security.

During his remarks, Brig. Gen. Robert L. Walter, Jr., deputy commanding general of INSCOM, said that while the Army's technical advancements in detection and attribution shed light on malicious activity, cyber intruders continue to explore new means to circumvent defensive measures.

"Data collection, processing, storage and transmission capabilities are increasing exponentially. ... The impact of this evolution is seen not only in the scope and nature of cyber security incidents, but also in the range of actors and targets," Walter said.

"The 780th MI Brigade represents the Army's recognition of the cyber challenge and is charged with being part of a joint construct of cyberspace resources, creating synergy and synchronizing war-fighting effects to defend the information security environment."

Among those who also attended were Garrison Commander Col. Edward C. Rothstein; Garrison Command Sgt. Maj. Smith; Gwen Conger and Suzanne Cromwell of the engineer team of the Intelligence and Security Command; Mike Fox of the Army Cryptologic Office; Randy Winemiller of the Army Corps of Engineers, Baltimore District; and Paul Karmazinski and Ralph Buckles of Akima Construction.

Prior to breaking ground for the brigade's new headquarters and operations center, Sweet thanked several leaders, both in the Army and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, for their support in the planning and building effort.

Sweet also pointed out the brigade's proximity to military greatness when the post, originally named Camp Meade, was established in 1917 as a training site during World War I.

"Our headquarters will lie in the shadows of two of America's most prominent general officers who spent the early parts of their military careers here at Camp Meade at the conclusion of World War I," Sweet said. "Major Dwight David Eisenhower graduated from the Camp Meade Tank School and served as commanding officer of several tank units here. ... And in March 1919, Major George S. Patton Jr. commanded the 304th Tank Brigade here at Camp Meade."

Eisenhower's quarters and Patton's brigade headquarters were located just a few hundred yards from the 780th's eventual new home.

"Not too much pressure," Sweet said.

Page last updated Thu February 23rd, 2012 at 00:00