Maj. Gen. Kurt J. Ryan became the 20th commanding general of the U.S. Army's Military Surface Deployment and Distribution Command today during a change of command ceremony here.

Army Gen. Dennis L. Via, commanding general of U.S. Army Materiel Command at Redstone Arsenal, Alabama, was the presiding official and Air Force Gen. Darren W. McDew, commander of U.S. Transportation Command co-hosted the ceremony.

Ryan replaced Maj. Gen. Susan Davidson who had commanded SDDC since June 2014 and will soon take command of the 8th Theater Sustainment Command at Ft. Shafter, Hawaii.

"I guarantee you, as much as we have entrusted under General Davidson, I will tell you right now that Kurt Ryan will flat-out get after it," said McDew during his remarks. "I trust him as the component commander to lead this Army component to U.S. Transportation Command to even greater heights."

Via concurred. "As the Colors were passed from Maj. Gen. Davidson to Maj. Gen. Ryan, so were the history, traditions and achievements of this great command," said Via, "and they are, indeed, significant."

Ryan has held a wide variety of command and staff positions. Previous to this assignment, he served as Chief of Ordnance and commandant of the U.S. Army Ordnance School.

He began active duty service in the U.S. Army Ordnance Corps, a career now spanning 29 years. The majority of his experience is with tactical Army formations, twice serving as a Paratrooper in the 82nd Airborne Division, two tours with the 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault), a tour in Germany with the 1st Armored Division, duty in upstate New York with the 10th Mountain Division (Light Infantry), and assignment with the First U.S. Corps in Washington State.

He commanded troops on five occasions; as a Company Commander in Germany, Battalion Commander in North Carolina, Brigade Commander in New York, Commanding General of an Expeditionary Sustainment Command in Washington State and as the CG, U.S. Army Ordnance Corps in Virginia.

General Ryan has a lifelong passion to continue to learn and grow. He is a graduate of numerous military schools and has earned two Masters of Science degrees; from the Florida Institute of Technology (Logistics Management) and the U.S. Army's War College (Strategic Studies).

Among his awards are the Legion of Merit (2), Bronze Star Medal (2), the Defense Meritorious Service Medal (2), and the Army Meritorious Service Medal (6). He proudly wears the Master Parachutist Badge, the Air Assault Badge, and the Ranger Tab.

The day prior to the change of command ceremony, Ryan pinned on the rank of Maj. Gen. during a promotion ceremony at SDDC headquarters officiated by Lt. Gen. Stephen R. Lyons, deputy commander of U.S. Transportation Command.

"I am extremely humbled and I'm proud to stand here today to serve you, to serve as your commanding general, as we build on the successes of this Army command," said Ryan.
SDDC provides global surface deployment and distribution services to meet the nation's objectives.

Serving as Department of Defense's global surface transportation experts, SDDC plans, books, ships and tracks cargo; conducts port operations; and manages personal property moves for service members, other federal employees and their families by leveraging the capability of commercial industry and other military services.