By Capt. Robert N. DurrJuly 6, 2016
USAG YONGSAN, South Korea -- The 1st Signal Brigade bid farewell to outgoing commander, Col. Arvesta P. Roberson and welcomed Col. Scott A. Bird during its change of command ceremony June 30.
Soldiers, leaders, families and civilians of 1st Signal Brigade gathered at USAG-Yongsan's Collier Gymnasium to welcome the brigade's 31st commander.
The ceremony began with the arrival of the official party and Roberson and Bird took their positions in front of the staff and formation. Maj. Gen. David W. Puster, Deputy Commanding General-Sustainment, Eighth Army, presided over the ceremony.
Puster said ceremonies like these are important because they celebrate service and leadership
"The caliber of these two leaders at this change of command ceremony confirms why we are the strongest Army in the world," Puster said.
"Today marks an important moment in the career of a true soldier. After two years as the Commander of the 1st Signal Brigade, Col. 'Rob' Roberson says farewell to those he has faithfully and selflessly served here on the peninsula."
After Puster thanked Roberson for his time in command, he welcomed Bird as the new commander of the 1st Signal Brigade.
"Your leadership will be key to leading us into the future as we look for ways to increase efficiencies and to ensure we provide our soldiers and family members the best training and support they deserve," Puster said. "You are a great addition to the team and the community and we know you will continue to strengthen the organization and the ROK-US alliance."
During the ceremony, Command Sgt. Maj. Donald A. Wilson, 1st Signal Brigade Command Sergeant Major, handed Roberson the brigade colors for the last time, signifying his last act of allegiance to the outgoing commander and thanking him for his leadership.
Roberson then passed the colors to Puster, representing his last act as 1st Signal Brigade's Commander and thanking him for the opportunity to have led the 1st Signal Brigade.
Puster then presented Bird with the colors, ensuring that he trusts Bird's abilities to lead and take responsibility of the 1st Signal Brigade and all of its soldiers.
Finally, Bird then passed the colors to Wilson, signifying his first act as commander and representing the confidence he has in the partnership with the Noncommissioned Officer Corps.
Col. Roberson said he has been grateful for the opportunity to serve as the commander of the 1st Signal Brigade.
"The members of this brigade are the most dedicated and determined group I have ever served with. They represent the best of our nations have to offer," Roberson said.
"They always preserved through every crisis and always remain vigilant ensuring the warfighters that 'we will get the message through. It has been a distinct honor and privilege to serve as your commander; I am proud of you," Roberson said.
As Bird addressed the crowd for the first time as the 1st Signal Brigade commander, he thanked friends, family and those who he has served with throughout his career.
"I want to thank the Soldiers, civilians and families, both American and Korean, of the 1st Signal Brigade," Bird said. "Your reputation as a skilled, disciplined and dedicated unit extends far outside of Korea."
Bird's experience both in Korea and Hawaii have given him confidence of the 1st Signal Brigade's character and commitment.
"I have personally seen the standard of excellence which is the 1st Signal Brigade's legacy, Bird said. "I look forward to this chance to serve with you in the coming month and years."
Roberson was born in San Diego, California and is a Distinguished Military Graduate of the University of West Florida. He holds a Bachelor's of Science in Electrical Engineering and a Master's of Arts in Telecommunication Management and Information Systems from Webster's University.
His military education includes the Infantry Officer Basic Course, Airborne School, the Bradley Fighting Vehicle Commander's Course, the Signal Corps Transition and Advanced Courses, Mobile Subscriber Equipment Systems Controller Course, COMSEC Custodian Course, Combined Arms Services Staff School, and the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College.
Roberson has served at The Pentagon, the Republic of Korea, Germany, Bosnia, Fort Hood, Texas and a deployment to Kuwait. His awards and decorations include the Bronze Star, the Meritorious Service Medal and the Bronze Order of Mercury.
Col. Scott A. Bird was commissioned into the Signal Corps as a Second Lieutenant in 1993 upon graduating from Monmouth College in Monmouth, Illinois. He was assigned to 35th Signal Brigade (Airborne) at Fort Bragg, North Carolina. There he served in the 327th Signal Battalion (Airborne) as a Platoon Leader for a Single Channel Radio and Extension Switch Platoon, a Mobil Subscriber Equipment Node Center Platoon, and a Tri-Tac Node and Message Switch Platoon, and as the Battalion's Assistant Operations Officer. Bird deployed to Bosnia as the Signal Officer for the 229th Attack Aviation Regiment (Airborne) as part of Operation JOINT GUARD.
Bird was assigned to the 2nd Infantry Division in the Republic of Korea serving as the Battalion Signal Officer for the 1st Battalion, 503rd Infantry Regiment (Air Assault). Bird was assigned to the 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault) at Fort Campbell, Kentucky.
There he served as the Brigade Signal Officer for the 187th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, then as the Assistant Operations Officer for the 501st Signal Battalion, and Company Commander for Bravo Company, 501st Signal Battalion where he deployed to Kuwait and then Iraq, as part of the initial ground invasion of Operation IRAQI FREEDOM I.
He continued to serve the Division in Iraq as the Brigade Signal Officer for the 502nd Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team.
Next, Bird was assigned to Fort Irwin, California where he served in the 11th Armored Cavalry Regiment as the Operations Officer of the Regimental Support Squadron and as the Regimental Signal Officer where he deployed back to Iraq for Operation IRAQI FREEDOM III.
Bird was again assigned to Fort Bragg, North Carolina where he served as the Group Signal Officer for 7th Special Forces Group and as the J6 for the Combined Joint Special Operations Task Force -- Afghanistan for three deployments in support of Operation ENDURING FREEDOM. In 2010, Bird moved to the XVIII Airborne Corps Headquarters serving as the G6 Operations Chief where he deployed to Haiti with the Corps' Assault Command Post as part of Operation UNIFIED RESPONSE.
In July 2011 Bird assumed command of the 307th Expeditionary Signal Battalion. In July 2013, Bird moved to MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa, Florida and deployed to Afghanistan for a year as the J6 for Special Operations Joint Task Force. Most recently he served as the J6 for Special Operations Command -- Central.