The 554th MP Company change of command
Capt. Jeffrey Soto, the incoming 554th Military Police Company, 709th Military Police Battalion, 18th Military Police Brigade commander, passes the unit colors to 1st Sgt. Joshua M. Kreitzer during the 554 MP Company change of command ceremony on Pan... (Photo Credit: U.S. Army) VIEW ORIGINAL

STUTTGART, Germany - The 21st Theater Sustainment Command's 554th Military Police Company, 709th Military Police Battalion, 18th Military Police Brigade, held its change of command ceremony on Panzer Kaserne Jan. 16.

Capt. Steven R. Kuhl was the outgoing commander and a native of Jackson, Minn. He is a graduate of the military police captains career course, deployed to Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom and is married to Amanda Huber Kuhl with four children.

Kuhl began by declaring his appreciation for the soldiers in his company.

"Over the last 18 months, I have watched this company transform into one of the best companies in the brigade. Wardawgs, we have been through many challenges that have stretched us to the limit," he said. "Through every hardship, you have shown that you are resilient and ready to face anything that comes your way."

Lt. Col. Steven Yamashita, the 709th MP Battalion commander and native of Guam, expressed his gratitude for Kuhl's hard work.

"Steve, please accept my sincere thanks on behalf of the entire battalion when I say thank you for your commitment over the last 16 months and thank you for all the time, energy and effort you have put into making the 554th MP Company a place where people want to live and serve."

According to Yamashita, Kuhl instituted a first class professional law enforcement training regimen, rigorously certifying and training soldiers to assist, protect and defend over 30,000 service members, civilians and family members in Stuttgart.

Yamashita then charged the incoming commander, Capt. Jeffery Soto, a native of Bayamon, Puerto Rico, with the care of the company.

"Jeff, you know the standard. You, along with your first sergeant will be chartered with making the Wardawgs even better," he said.

During Soto's speech, he thanked senior leaders for entrusting him with the honor of commanding such a distinguished company. He then took a moment to address his company.

"The first thing that I would like to tell you as your commander is this: the actions you take today will define who you are tomorrow. So make sure they are actions you are willing to live with."