By Lt. Col. Lindan A. Moya, Army MedicineJune 11, 2013
JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO - FORT SAM HOUSTON, TEXAS--Maj. Gen. M. Ted Wong relinquished command of Southern Regional Medical Command to Maj. Gen. Jimmie O. Keenan during a change of command ceremony at the MacArthur parade field, Thursday, June 6.
SRMC is the Army's largest medical region, with 11 military treatment facilities across 11 states, plus the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands, caring for 503,116 beneficiaries with a total of 23,284 staff members.
During his two-year tenure as the SRMC commanding general, Maj. Gen. Wong, a Southern California native, also served as the commanding general of Brooke Army Medical Center for 18 months. He was hand-picked by the Army Surgeon General, Lt. Gen. Patricia D. Horoho, commanding general of the U.S. Army Medical Command, to lead the transformation of BAMC through the Army's portion of the Base Realignment and Closure process, seamlessly integrating with Wilford Hall Medical Center, the largest Air Force military treatment facility located on Lackland Air Force Base. Simultaneously, Maj. Gen. Wong served as the San Antonio Military Health System deputy director, and he worked very closely with SAMHS Director Air Force Maj. Gen. Byron C. Hepburn to continue to deliver high-quality care to San Antonio area military members and their families.
In addition to the many titles and responsibilities Maj. Gen. Wong held during his time at SRMC, he also served, and is currently serving, as the U.S. Army Dental Corps Chief. Later this month, Maj. Gen. Wong will assume command as the commanding general of the Northern Regional Medical Command, in Fort Belvoir, Va.
Incoming Commanding General Maj. Gen. Keenan entered the Army as a nurse corps officer in July 1986, receiving her commission through the Reserve Officer Training Corps at Henderson State University in Arkansas. She holds a Master of Science in Nursing Administration from the Medical College of Georgia and a Masters Degree in Strategic Studies from the U.S. Army War College. She has also served as a Congressional Fellow for former Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, (R-TX) and is currently the chief of the U.S. Army Nurse Corps. Maj. Gen. Keenan was the commanding general for U.S. Army Public Health Command prior to her selection as commanding general of SRMC.
Maj. Gen. Keenan also assumes the duties of the deputy director of SAMHS, and in September will take over as the director, replacing Maj. Gen. Hepburn. Maj. Gen. Keenan will be the first Army general officer to hold the position of director of SAMHS, overseeing all of the military medical treatment facilities across the San Antonio metropolitan area to include Wilford Hall.
At the end of her remarks, Maj. Gen. Keenan addressed the SRMC military treatment facility commanders and staff, and emphasized their mission to take care of America's Sons and Daughters, no matter the challenges that lay ahead.