DUGWAY PROVING GROUND, Utah -- Maj. Gen. John. W. Charlton, commanding general of Army Test and Evaluation Command, was the reviewing officer and senior commander present as Dugway Proving Ground welcomed one new commander while saying goodbye to another during a change of command ceremony, July 12.
Col. Brant D. Hoskins took command from Col. Sean G. Kirschner, who served as commander of Dugway since July 2015. Kirschner's next assignment is in South Korea.
Hoskins comes to Dugway from Headquarters, Combined Joint Task Force, Camp Arifjan, Kuwait. He was commissioned as a Distinguished Military Graduate from Southern Oregon State College, Ashland, Oregon, with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics. He is a Distinguished Graduate of the U.S. Army War College. He holds Masters' Degrees in Adult Education, Theater Operations and Strategic Studies. During his career, Hoskins has served in command and staff positions in the U.S., Germany, Bosnia, Iraq and Afghanistan.
A change of command is a special and symbolic tradition--passing the unit colors (unit flag) from one leader to another--symbolizing the transferring of authority and responsibility from one commander to another.
During the ceremony, Dugway's command sergeant major, Command Sgt. Maj. Joe Bonds passed the Dugway colors to Kirschner signifying the last final act of the outgoing commander. Kirschner then passed the colors to Charlton signifying a successful command. Charlton passed the colors to Hoskins, the incoming commander, charging him with the responsibility for Dugway as its new commander. Hoskins passed the colors back to Bonds symbolizing his first official act with the command sergeant major.
Other distinguished guests in attendance, besides Charlton, included Dr. D. Christian Hassell, Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Chemical and Biological Defense; Brig. Gen. Dallen S. Atack, Assistant Adjutant General for Utah; and Mr. John Edwards, Utah Civilian Aide to the Secretary of the Army.
Music was provided by the 23rd Utah Army National Guard Band. Static displays on the parade field included test instrumentation and dissemination devices from West Desert Test Center and unmanned aircraft systems.
During his remarks, Hoskins noted Dugway's relevance to the nation and the warfighter.
"Immediately prior to coming to Dugway, I was in Kuwait and Iraq as part of Operation Inherent Resolve to combat ISIS," he said. "While there I was personally and directly able to observe the results of Dugway Proving Ground's efforts."
Hoskins continued, "Make no mistake, your diligent work here is saving lives today and will continue to ensure that our men and women in uniform are trained and equipped to survive and win in the most dangerous environments."
"I am proud and humbled to join with you and our partners from throughout the Department of defense, the state of Utah and the local community in this team effort," Hoskins said.
The end of the ceremony was marked by a demonstration fly-over by an MQ-1C Gray Eagle unmanned aircraft system.
U.S. Army Dugway Proving Ground is the nation's designated Major Range and Test Facility Base for Chemical and Biological Defense (C/B) Testing and Countering Weapons of Mass Destruction (CWMD) Support, conducting efficient testing and support to enable our nation's defenders to counter chemical, biological, radiological, and explosives (CBRE) hazards. Dugway Proving Ground provides unparalleled testing, evaluation, training, and technical support to the Department of Defense, inter-agency partners, and our Allies. For more information, visit our website at www.dugway.army.mil and join us on Facebook (official) at www.facebook.com/USArmyDPG.