Command Sgt. Maj. Christopher G. Gilpin assumed the duties and responsibilities for caring for the Soldiers, Civilians and Families of the 3rd Infantry Division in ceremonies April 4 at Marne Garden. Gilpin's most recent assignment was as the senior enlisted adviser for the 2nd Armored Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division, Fort Riley, Kansas.

"Four years and three duty stations later, I am happy to say again than I am a Dog Face Soldier," said Gilpin during his remarks.

Gilpin enlisted in the Army in 1986 at Fort Benning, Georgia as an infantryman, and has served in every leadership position from team leader to Command Sergeant Major. He holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Management and Administration from Excelsior College and a Masters of Art in Teaching from Webster University.

"Only the very best are chosen to lead at the Division level and you have demonstrated the character, competence, and commitment [required]. You have my complete trust," said Maj. Gen. Mike Murray, 3rd ID commanding general, to Gilpin during the ceremony.

"Much is expected of me... to be professional, disciplined," Gilpin said. "Hold me to a high standard to ensure I fulfill my duties inherent in this position. I will not fail our Soldiers."

Referenced as a day of transition from one great leader to another by the commanding general, Fort Stewart and 3rd ID also bid farewell to Command Sgt. Maj. Edd Watson, who had served as the Division Command Sergeant Major since March 2011.

"[Watson] was always looking for ways to mentor leaders and improve our training. He was a very professional ambassador for this Division, and my only regret is that it was only nine months [that we worked together]," Murray said. "Your position is occupied, but your legacy will remain for a very, very long time."

"It has been an honor serving with you and a unique privilege to lead the talented men and women - military and civilian - of the 3rd Infantry Division," Watson said. "Now I leave this position with nothing in the tank...I gave it my all, to the very end, and I had fun. And I am confident to pass the reigns to Command Sgt. Maj. Gilpin. He is a great leader, and I am confident that he is absolutely the right choice for this Division."

Watson, who has served in the Army for more than 33 years, will retire in June.