INDEPENDENCE, Mo. -- The Defense Department's small-caliber ammunition production facility bid farewell to one commander and welcomed another at Lake City Army Ammunition Plant here, July 12.

Lt. Col. Eric Dennis relinquished command to Lt. Col. Dana Crow. Dennis has been the commander since July 13, 2016. He was reassigned to the Human Resources Command at Fort Knox, Ky., where he will serve as the Ordnance Enlisted Branch Chief.

Col. Joseph Blanding, commander of McAlester Army Ammunition Plant, Oklahoma, and the senior reviewing officer, praised Dennis for Team Lake City's accomplishments.

He cited Dennis' ability to adapt to the munitions environment, which required managing safety and environmental challenges, and obtaining $155 million for infrastructure and modernization improvements. He also praised Dennis for driving the rewrite and submission of safety site plans, and for successfully executing an $8.4 billion contract to produce small-arms ammunition for the Defense Department.

"Eric, you addressed and tackled the challenges of command, and you made a difference," said Blanding. "You led this organization to achieve continued excellence, while providing outstanding support for our nation's warfighters."

Dennis began his brief remarks by acknowledging the special, close-knit relationship that exists between his government staff and Northrup Grumman, who runs the government-owned, contractor-operated small-arms ammunition manufacturing facility.

"I said it before in April 2017 -- Lake City is a family," said Dennis. "This is a family business -- not just the multi-generational workforce, but also the contractors and the government employees… It is with deep regret that I have to say goodbye to this family."

Blanding thanked Crow's family, colleagues and friends for attending and welcomed her to the Joint Munitions Command team. He said her leadership positions with the 25th Infantry Division, Sustainment Center of Excellence, 3rd Infantry Division and the National Training Center, along with her deployments to Afghanistan and Kuwait, have prepared her for this command.

"I have no doubt that Lake City Army Ammunition Plant continues in great hands," said Blanding.

Crow came to LCAAP from Fort Leavenworth where she was an instructor for the Command and General Staff College. She acknowledged the honor of joining the unique munitions organization.

"To the Lake City team of teams, your pride in what is accomplished here is evident, and I look forward to serving with each of you," she said.

Lake City Army Ammunition Plant is one of 17 installations of the Joint Munitions Command and one of 23 organic industrial base facilities under the U.S. Army Materiel Command.