Fort Bliss and 1st Armored Division transitioned senior commanders in a change of command ceremony in which Maj. Gen. Stephen M. Twitty relinquished command to Maj. Gen. Pat White at 1st Lt. Paul A. Noel Parade Field, Fort Bliss, Texas June 15.
Gen. Robert B. Abrams, commanding general, U.S. Army Forces Command, presided over the ceremony and spoke about what the 1st Armored Division has accomplished in their many deployments and their role in today's Army.
"They, these Soldiers, have been on the cutting edge of military technology, ploughing the ground for how we will maintain our competitive edge and fight and win in the future," Abrams said. "This division is made up of innovative and critical thinkers, tactical and technical experts in their field, dedicated to the profession and they have accomplished every mission given with very high standards."
White comes to Fort Bliss from U.S. Army Forces Command at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, where he served as the deputy chief of staff for operations and training since September 2015. White told Soldiers what he will be looking for as their commander.
"I promise you the resources you need to get your mission done," White said. "What I'm going to ask of you is to keep giving your 110 percent to do three things - one is be highly trained; two is to be fit; and three is be disciplined."
Although he has never been stationed here, White is no stranger to the division, having been assigned to 1st AD several times when the unit was in Germany and Kansas. He has served in first, second and third brigades as well as in the headquarters and has deployed three times with 1st Armored Division in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom as a battalion commander, brigade commander and as assistant chief of staff, G-3.
White calls himself a trainer and said he wants to be with the Soldiers, providing for them and ensuring they're able to do what's asked of them by senior leaders. White plans to take advantage of the vast training areas here to keep the force ready.
"I think Fort Bliss is blessed with tremendous leadership, tremendous opportunities. This is the most modern installation that we have in the Army. It has the largest training area of any installation in the Army," White said.
White said he and his wife, Emma, are looking forward to getting to know the community.
"El Paso community, thank you very much for everything you do for these Soldiers. Emma and I look forward to working with you. We're excited to be teammates of Old Ironsides once again," White said.
Twitty, who commanded 1st Armored Division and Fort Bliss since 2014, was selected for promotion to lieutenant general and will assume command of First U.S. Army, Rock Island Arsenal, Illinois, later this summer.