FORT RUCKER, Ala. -- The 1st Battalion, 14th Aviation Regiment welcomed its new senior NCO during a change of responsibility ceremony on Howze Field Nov. 15.

Command Sgt. Maj. Brandi N. Whitman assumed responsibility as the 1-14th Avn. Regt. command sergeant major from Command Sgt. Maj. Jerry M. Cowart Jr. as Lt. Col. Michael S. Johnson, the unit's commander, presided over the ceremony.

"Today, the Tomahawks say farewell to a tremendous team in Command Sergeant Major Jerry and Susan Cowart," said the battalion commander. "You have served exceptionally over the past 23 months as the battalion command sergeant major of the Tomahawks. You have remained a steady source of guidance and counsel for the leadership and, more importantly, for the Soldiers of the 1-14th.

"Today also marks the day I get to welcome Command Sergeant Major Brandi Whitman to the formation," Johnson continued. "She brings with her a considerable amount of experience. The 1-14th does have a challenging mission of training tomorrow's attack Aviators, and I know that you'll fit right in as part of our outstanding team of Soldiers, civilians and contractors. Command Sergeant Major Whitman, welcome to the team."

Whitman returns to Fort Rucker from her most recent assignment as the 2-25th Avn. Regt. battalion command sergeant major at Wheeler Army Airfield, Hawaii. She enlisted in the Army in 1995, and has served in numerous duty and leadership positions.

She has served all over the world, including Camp Humphreys, Korea, where she handled flight operations; Katterbach, Germany, where served as the S1, S2, S3 NCOIC; Fort Campbell, Kentucky, as the brigade Aviation element NCOIC and first sergeant. Whitman has also been deployed four times in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.

"I am honored and humbled to become part of this great unit," said the incoming command sergeant major. "I look forward to working with each and everyone one of the Tomahawk Soldiers and civilians, and their families."

Whitman went on to thank those who helped her become the Soldier she is today, including her predecessor, who helped her transition into the position during the weeks leading up to the ceremony.

Cowart expressed his full confidence in Whitman's ability to lead. He added that she is the right person to continue the Tomahawk legacy.

"(Command) Sergeant Major Whitman, I've enjoyed the handoff -- you're a true professional," said the outgoing command sergeant major. "I think we only got angry with each other one time and that's not bad with two headstrong command sergeants major.

"Your ability to connect with people is just what the battalion needs," he continued. "Your previous experience as a battalion sergeant major makes this job seem too easy. I hope the best for you as you take over the battalion's legacy."

Cowart will move on to be the Aviation Operations Training Center command sergeant major.