CRANE, Ind. -- Col. Jim Hooper became the 17th commander of Crane Army Ammunition Activity June 10 at a ceremony overlooking Naval Support Activity Crane's Lake Greenwood.
Hooper assumed command from Col. Robert "Joe" Dixon, Jr, who has been selected to serve as the G4, the senior staff logistician, for III Corps, one of three corps of the United States Army Forces Command and located at Fort Hood, Texas.
A large crowd of Army, Navy and civilians watched as command colors passed from Dixon to Brig. Gen. Kristin K. French, Commanding General of U.S. Army Joint Munitions Command, to Hooper.
Hooper, a distinguished graduate of the Army ROTC program at Lafayette College, was commissioned as an Ordnance Officer in 1992. He most recently served as the Chief of Staff of the 1st Theater Sustainment Command's Operational Command Post located at Camp Arifjan, Kuwait.
"I'm extremely humbled and honored to be a part of the Joint Munitions Command and Crane Army Ammunition Activity," Hooper said. "Having recently left Kuwait after supporting operations in Iraq, Afghanistan and seven other countries in the Middle East, I can tell you that what happens here at Crane is as important, critical and relevant as it has ever has been."
"I look forward to building on the continued coordination and improvement of relationships between Crane and our state and local partners as well as our local communities as Col. Dixon has done over the last two years," Hooper said.
French, who was the guest speaker for the event, praised the many accomplishments the Crane Army workforce was able to achieve under Dixon's leadership, adding that Crane Army has been the JMC installation that has been the most aggressive and successful at restructuring its command.
"Your extraordinary contributions to our nation and to our warfighters are unparalleled," French said. "Your work, day in and day out, allows our warfighters to be successful in their mission to preserve liberty and freedom in countries all over the world."
"I know you are in good hands with my friend Col. Jim Hooper and his wife Dyan," Dixon told the crowd in his speech. "I have great confidence that the team will continue with the many innovations underway and to continuously improve and evolve so that Crane Army Ammunition Activity will continue to be a unique and precious resource for the nation."
French was also positive that Crane would continue to excel in its mission to support military operations all over the world under Hooper's leadership. "I am confident that Col. Hooper's logistics background will serve Crane well," said French. "He has worked at the tactical through the strategic levels of our Army."
A private reception at the base club was held following the ceremony.
Established October 1977, Crane Army Ammunition Activity maintains ordnance professionals and infrastructure in order to receive, store, ship, produce, renovate and demilitarize conventional ammunition, missiles and related components. Crane Army maintains up to one third of the DoD's conventional ammunition inventory. The Activity also provides command oversight of Iowa Army Ammunition Plant, Letterkenny Munitions Center, Pennsylvania, and Milan Army Ammunition Plant, Tennessee.