By Amy PerryJuly 29, 2016
FORT LEE, Va. (July 28, 2016) -- A new Transportation Corps command team is in place after a joint assumption of command and change of responsibility ceremony July 22 at Wylie Hall.
Brig. Gen. Jeffrey W. Drushal took command nearly a month after Brig. Gen. Michel Russell Sr. -- former Chief of Transportation -- relinquished the position to replace Drushal as the assistant chief of staff, J-4, U.S. Forces Korea. Command Sgt. Maj. Vickie Culp replaced CSM Cynthia Howard as well. Maj. Gen. Darrell K. Williams, CASCOM and Fort Lee commanding general, oversaw the assumption of command.
Williams said as a nation at war, nothing is more important than continually training Soldiers to be leaders, and Drushal is committed to continuing that at the helm of the corps.
"The Army, as it always does, provides us with the right leader at exactly the right time, and this time, we welcome Brig. Gen. Drushal and his wife, Terry," he said. "I can tell you if you read the bio or know him by reputation that he has an extraordinary combination of talent, leadership and experience to hold this position.
"As you can see, he has continuously and successfully served in highly demanding and challenging positions, and he is, indeed, the right man for this job," continued Williams. "There is no question the Soldiers, civilians and families of the Transportation School are now in great hands. He knows the value of training and he understands leader development. He is a professional in the capacity of a transportation officer and multi-functional logistician. I know he can, and he will, ensure the schoolhouse remains viable and relevant, and that the transportation Soldiers who leave here will continue to be the best trained, best led and best equipped."
Col. Steve George, assistant commandant of the Transportation School, served as the acting Chief of Transportation between Russell and Drushal, and Williams thanked him for his service.
"Unquestionably, Steve, you have executed your mission with absolute excellence and you have maintained the continuity between two chiefs of transportation extraordinarily well," he said. "You, as well as the rest of the team, have executed numerous requirements absolutely flawlessly, and I continue to sleep well at night."
In the last few decades, the corps has experienced a lot of change as it adapts to fight the nation's wars, and Drushal said he's is ready for this new experience.
"It's humbling and exciting to return to the Transportation Corps where I started 27 years ago," he said. "I appreciate the opportunity to represent the corps at this time, to represent its capabilities and its Soldiers."
In his first act as the 28th Chief of Transportation, Drushal passed the senior leader mantle from Howard to Culp. Howard -- the only outgoing leader from the ceremony -- took time to personally thank many of those in the audience and in the corps who helped her achieve and serve as the top NCO in her branch.
"It has been an honor and a privilege to serve as the first female regimental command sergeant major of the Transportation Corps," Howard said. "I'll take with me not only great memories but also knowing that this command has given me much more than I could ever give back to the Army."
After thanking many, the outgoing CSM turned her attention to the new team.
"Welcome and I wish the both of you the best as you continue to take our corps to the next level," Howard said.
Culp said she looks forward to her new position and can't wait to get started.
"Today the journey begins and it's an honor to have this opportunity," she said. "Brig. Gen. Drushal, I look forward to working with you, building a strong team and getting to know your family.
"To the officers, warrant officers, NCOs and civilians I have met over the last week, thank you for welcoming me and assisting me with my transition," Culp continued. "I look forward to getting to know everyone and developing the team."
Additionally, Culp took time to recognize her predecessor for her efforts at the top.
"CSM Howard, your leadership, selfless service and dedication moved the Transportation Corps forward," she said. "You gave us your all every day as our regimental CSM. You were always in teaching mode, helping to develop others."
The corps has a strong history of being forward-thinking and Culp said she was ready to make her impact on the mission.
"I am a 360-degree leader," she said. "I will lead to the south, taking care of the total force of the Transportation Corps by gathering information, learning, being an innovative and strategic thinker. I will lead north by influencing those with authority over me. I will lead east and west impacting my peers, but most importantly, I will stay humble yet diligent and maintain my own compass needle.
"We will come together as a team with a mission to thrive, and we're going to do it with passion, compassion, humor and some style," Culp continued. "I'm ready and moving forward because I have a heart full of grace, a fire in my belly and a soul generated by desire to do what's right."