SEMBACH, Germany--Command Sgt. Maj. Bernadette Phillips assumed responsibility as the senior enlisted leader of the U.S. Army NATO Brigade from Command Sgt. Maj. Ira Russey in a ceremony Sep. 5 at Sembach Kaserne.
Phillips most recently served as the battalion senior enlisted leader for the 369th Adjutant General Battalion at Fort Jackson, South Carolina, and has served in a variety of roles from company through command levels.
Russey led the brigade's enlisted Soldiers since June of 2016. He saw the brigade through a number of challenging efforts including support to several critical NATO Response Force transitions and the establishment of a U.S. Army presence in a new NATO multinational division.
The USANATO Bde. is an incredibly complex brigade of roughly 1,000 personnel assigned to 44 organizations across 20 countries, and the senior enlisted leader of the brigade serves as a mentor to both the brigade's National Support Soldiers serving in the brigade's two subordinate battalions, and also the Peacetime Establishment personnel serving directly in the NATO command and force structures.
According to USANATO Bde. commander, Col. Jason Riley, Russey's constant engagement and mentorship with personnel at all levels throughout this complex organization, was critical to the success not only of its assigned Soldiers, but also of the NATO alliance that relies on the brigade to provide trained and ready U.S. Army forces.
"Since his arrival in June of 2016, he has contributed tirelessly to ensuring that this very unique and geographically dispersed command has remained ready and relevant," said Riley.
Riley also expressed confidence in Phillips' ability to take the reins from Russey and continue moving the brigade forward.
"I know that she will not only continue the great work and initiatives started by (Russey) but will also apply her experience and wisdom in making sure we are ready for the challenges that will come," he said.