By Carrie Dungan, Fort Bragg ParaglideOctober 18, 2017
The XVIII Airborne Corps welcomed a new command sergeant major Wednesday, during a change of responsibility ceremony at the Main Post Parade Field. Command Sgt. Maj. Benjamin Jones passed the reigns to Command Sgt. Maj. Charles W. Albertson.
Albertson, a native of Greenville, Michigan, made the journey to Fort Bragg from Fort Drum, New York, where he most recently served as the command sergeant major of 10th Mountain Division (Light Infantry). He made the trip with his wife, Carmen and sons, Seth and Victor.
Lt. Gen. Stephen Townsend, commanding general, commander of Fort Bragg and XVIII Abn. Corps, hosted the ceremony and welcomed the Albertson Family to the installation.
In his remarks, Townsend also issued a request to his new partner.
"I challenge you to continue to strengthen our relationships with our divisions and separate brigades, build a sense of community and teamwork here on Fort Bragg inside the wire and outside the wire. I want you to continue to teach, coach and mentor Soldiers and leaders wherever you go."
In an earlier interview with the Paraglide, Albertson said he is fully prepared to support his commander's intent and create lines of effort that reinforce those priorities.
"I have to assess what the organization needs, and then I have to figure how I can help provide what the organization needs," he explained.
The new command sergeant major also said he wants to focus on Army priorities like reducing non-deployable rates and continually building readiness across the force.
This ability to sustain a "ready now" corps is one of the most important aspects of the job for Albertson.
"…We are sending Soldiers all around the world to support missions that our nation needs us to do. That's what I'm excited about -- that we are providing capabilities to get things done," he explained.
Albertson said he is looking forward to working directly with a large number and variety of Soldiers as well.
"Wherever you go in this Army, you can have an impact … Soldiers need good leaders everywhere, and I want to impact those young Soldiers."
Jones, who departs Fort Bragg to serve as the command sergeant major of U.S. Army Pacific Command, thanked the XVIII team for his experience over the past 26 months. Townsend recognized Jones for his service, and praised his actions in the XVIII Abn. Corps command sergeant major position.
Townsend said he was grateful to have had Jones as his "jump buddy" for the past two years and lauded the qualities that made him an excellent partner.
"Sgt. Maj. Jones has been my eyes and ears, my conscience … and more importantly, my friend," Townsend explained. "He has a keen eye for discipline and standards, for force protection … Soldier morale and leader development. These were invaluable to the corps at large and to me personally."
While deployed as part of Combined Joint Task Force -- Operation Inherent Resolve, Jones constantly visited Soldiers of "all services and all nations as my chief scout and representative," Townsend said.
After these trips, Jones ensured Townsend and other staff had the best information through regular briefings.
"His deep insights, often shared while we were moving ... those were invaluable to me," explained Townsend. "They helped me develop my understanding of the situation on the ground and undoubtedly made our CJTF and XVIII Abn. Corps a stronger organization."
Townsend said he was looking forward to working with Albertson as his new teammate and confirmed that the incoming command sergeant major had the leadership and war training necessary for future Army and corps requirements.
"He's the type of leader who will ensure we maintain our discipline, who will enforce tough, but realistic standards, who will develop our junior leaders, and maintain the traditions that define who we are as a professional Army and as an airborne corps."