PICATINNY ARSENAL, N.J. -- Brig. Gen. Patrick W. Burden, Deputy Program Executive Officer Ammunition and Senior Commander, Picatinny Arsenal relinquished his Picatinny Senior Commander responsibilities to Brig. Gen. Alfred F. Abramson III, incoming Deputy Program Executive Officer Ammunition and Senior Commander, during a Change of Leadership Ceremony at Picatinny Nov. 14.

Starting a new tradition Burden passed ceremonial "Keys to the Cannon Gates" to Abramson to signify the transfer of responsibility.

Burden was decorated with the Legion of Merit medal for his service.
"This will be one of the last times I'll get to say 'Team Picatinny' in front of a crowd as Picatinny's Senior Commander. I'm going to miss saying it," said Burden who is scheduled to become the PEO Enterprise Information Systems at Fort Belvoir, Virginia.

During Burden's tenure, the installation expanded fire safety by adding a third fire company; entered into a new privatization arrangement for the ownership, operation and maintenance of the water and the wastewater systems at Picatinny; and yielded greater energy savings through the use of energy savings performance contracts. The installation also entered into a Memorandum of Understanding with Princeton University to collaborate on energy and environmental research.

"I do look forward to coming here and working with you all on the ammunition portfolio," said Abramson. "What is most important to me in terms of working in portfolios and within the military is the importance of building relationships, and the importance of building a strong team foundation."

As the Deputy PEO Ammunition, Burden oversaw Better Buying Power efficiencies at PEO Ammunition, resulting in the transfer of over 100,000 serviceable munition items between services and realizing an estimated $305 million cost avoidance. He also provided direct guidance and oversight to develop and implement an innovative acquisition strategy that sources materials globally and allows first deliveries of a legacy variant of 2,000-lb general purpose bombs in only 12 months, compared to a historical average of 36 months.

Prior to Picatinny, Abramson was the Deputy of the Joint Program Executive Officer for Chemical and Biological Defense at Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland.

Abramson was commissioned a Second Lieutenant in the Chemical Corps after graduating from Virginia State University where he received a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemistry.

Abramson served in a variety of positions overseas as well as the contiguous United States to include: Battalion Chemical Officer, 6-37th Field Artillery; SMOKE Platoon Leader, 172nd Chemical Company; Company Commander, 266th Quartermaster Battalion; Chemical Staff Officer, Project Manager's Office for Nuclear, Biological, & Chemical (NBC) Defense; Aide- De-Camp, Soldier Biological Chemical Command; Assistant Product Manager, NBC Point Detection, Project Office for NBC Defense; Program Executive Office Liaison Officer, Coalition Forces Land Component Command; Assistant Product Manager, NBC Reconnaissance, Joint Project Office NBC Contamination Avoidance; Budget Team Chief, Office of the Assistant Secretary of the Army (Acquisition, Logistics and Technology); Joint Product Manager, Biological Detection Systems, Joint Program Executive Office for Chemical and Biological Defense; Military Assistant to the Under Secretary of the Army; Joint Project Manager for NBC Contamination Avoidance; and most recently the Executive Officer for the Principle Military Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Army (Acquisition Logistics, and Technology.)

His civilian education includes a Master's degree in Chemistry from Johns Hopkins University, a Master's degree in National Security and Strategic Studies from the Naval War College, and a Master's degree in Strategic Studies from the Army War College.

His military education includes the Chemical Officer Basic and Advanced Courses, the Support Operations Course, the Combined Arms and Services Staff School, Command and General Staff College, the Advanced Program Management Course, the Senior Service College and Senior Leaders Course.

Abramson's awards include the Defense Superior Service Medal; the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, 1st Oak Leaf Cluster; the Army Meritorious Service Medal, 1st Oak Leaf Cluster; the Joint Service Commendation Medal, the Army Commendation Medal, 2nd Oak Leaf Cluster; the Army Achievement Medal, 1st Oak Leaf Cluster; and various other awards to include the Air Assault Badge; Parachutist Badge; and the Army Staff Identification Badge.

Picatinny Arsenal is the Department of Defense's Joint Center of Excellence for Guns and Ammunition, providing products and services to all branches of the U.S. military. The center's 5,000-plus employees specialize in research, development, acquisition and life cycle management of advanced conventional weapon systems and advanced ammunition. More than 90 percent of the Army's armaments and ammunition including warheads, explosives, all sizes of firearms, battlefield sensors, and howitzers are developed at Picatinny.

PEO Ammunition is the Single Manager for Conventional Ammunition and is responsible for life-cycle acquisition management for all Services of all conventional ammunition, which includes integrating budgets, acquisition strategies, research and development, and life-cycle management across all ammunition families.