The 12th Aviation Battalion has a new commanding officer. Lt. Col. James T. Donovan replaced Lt. Col. Reed G. Erickson during a ceremony held in front of the Lewis L. Stone Hanger at Davison Army Air Field, Fort Belvoir, Va., June 19, 2013.

"I would like to begin by thanking our past and present leaders who I have had the distinct honor of serving under and with," said Erickson as he addressed the battalion for the last time. "Thank you for your enduring confidence, trust, and support of me and the battalion as we executed our Aviation and Engineer missions."

Erickson has served in Haiti, Kosovo, Afghanistan and numerous postings stateside. His decorations include the Bronze Star and Army Commendation Medal.

The 12th Aviation Battalion is stationed at Davison Army Airfield, Fort Belvoir, Virginia and traces its roots back to 1958 when it was activated as the Executive Flight Detachment.

"It is a great honor to be standing before you today assuming command of a battalion with a critical mission and such a great history," said Donovan. "None of this would be possible if not for the Soldiers and civilians that I have worked with throughout my career."

Donovan is a Hofstra University graduate and has a Bachelor of Science in Economics. His decorations include the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Senior Army Aviator Badge, and the U.S. Army Air Assault Badge.

The mission of the 12th Aviation Battalion is to conduct contingency operations for the National Capital Region and to provide aviation support for the nation's leaders. The unit supplies this support whenever called upon and provides whatever is needed to enhance the mission of the Nation's Capital. The 12th Aviation Battalion is part of the Army Air Operations Group, U.S. Army Military District of Washington, headquartered at Fort McNair, Washington.