By Staff Sgt. Tony FosterOctober 21, 2015
FORT HOOD, Texas - First Army Division West welcomed a new Command Sergeant Major today in a change of responsibility ceremony here at Cameron Field near Division West headquarters.
Command Sgt. Maj. Jeffrey R. Dillingham arrives from United States Army Garrison, Bavaria, and will take over duties as standard bearer of the Longhorn division from Command Sgt. Maj. Patrick K. Akuna Jr.
"Thank you all for attending today's ceremony," said Dillingham. "To all the Soldiers and civilians of Division West, I'm excited to be a part of your team."
Akuna will move on to become Command Sergeant Major of Task Force Phantom Command of III Corps and Fort Hood.
"It has been such an honor and privilege to serve with each and every one of you the past two years here at Division West, and the past four years at the 'Great Place'," said Akuna. "My tenure at Division West has been very challenging, but also very fulfilling.
"Here at Division West you learn, you live, and you truly understand Army total force policy, and I am proud of each and every Soldier in our formation," added Akuna.
Maj. Gen. Jeffrey N. Colt, Division West commanding general, had great words of appreciation and admiration for his "Ranger buddy" and his wife, Kim.
"On behalf of the division, we are sincerely grateful for your committed leadership, service and sacrifices that you've made these past 23 months," said Colt. "It's been extremely rewarding serving with both of you.
"Command Sgt. Maj. Akuna, know that I am personally grateful for your loyal and sage-like guidance," Colt added.
Colt went on to speak about his new senior enlisted leader of Division West.
"Today's formation is very fortunate to welcome Command Sgt. Maj. Dillingham and his family," said Colt. "He's a leader of impeccable character and know that he has my full faith, trust, confidence and support."
As Dillingham stepped to the podium as the new DivWest command sergeant major, his remarks contained hopeful words.
"I'm ready to assist you in training Soldiers for our great country and to make sure they're taken care of the best we can," he said.
Division West, a subordinate unit of First Army headquarters at Rock Island, Illinois, trains and validates Army National Guard and Army Reserve Soldiers for deployment to combat or other contingency operations. The division also trains units of the active Army, U.S. Navy, U.S. Air Force, U.S. Marine Corps and United States partner nations, for nearly 19,000 Soldiers annually.
Division West's four subordinate training brigades are the 120th Infantry Brigade here; the 181st Infantry Brigade at Fort McCoy, Wisconsin; the 189th Infantry Brigade at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Washington; and the 5th Armored Brigade at Fort Bliss, Texas.