WATERVLIET ARSENAL, N.Y. -- The civilian workforce, soldiers, family and friends of the Watervliet Arsenal welcomed a new commander during a ceremony at the Arsenal.
U.S. Army Col. Milton G. Kelly took command as the 60th commander of the Watervliet Arsenal during an assumption of command ceremony. The previous commander, U.S. Army Col. Joseph R. Morrow, relinquished command on July 24, 2018.
U.S. Army Maj. Gen. Mitchell, the commanding general of U.S. Army Tank-automotive and Armaments Command, welcomed Col. Kelly with kind words.
"It is often said when a great leader moves on from an organization, the Army works hard to replace that individual with yet another outstanding officer with the skills, experiences, and leadership qualities to elevate the organization to new heights," Mitchell said. "This is truly the case as we welcome the Kelly command team to Watervliet."
Mitchell recalled Kelly's career, highlighting his experience and service to the nation.
"You can read his bio in the program, where you will see he is a seasoned officer who creates and builds teams to get the job done -- and done right," Mitchell said.
"It is an honor and a privilege to stand before you today as the 60th commander of this arsenal," Kelly said during his address, "Watervliet Arsenal has a 205 year legacy built upon dedication to service and a never ending flexibility in being able to respond to the needs of the nation -- It is really awe inspiring to be a part of that tradition."
Kelly concluded with a pledge, "Leaders lead the efforts of change, I am here to lead and with your help we will affect change together."
Kelly comes to the Arsenal with a wealth of military experience having served first as an enlisted soldier achieving the rank of Sergeant before receiving a commission in the U.S. Army Armor Corps. Kelly has served both stateside and overseas including combat deployments to Kosovo, Operation Desert Storm and Operation Iraqi Freedom. Prior to taking command of the Watervliet Arsenal, Kelly served as Chief of Staff of the Joint Munitions Command at Rock Island, IL.
The Watervliet Arsenal is an Army-owned-and-operated manufacturing facility and is the oldest, continuously active arsenal in the United States having begun operations during the War of 1812. It celebrated its 200th anniversary on July 14, 2013.
Today's Arsenal is relied upon by U.S. and foreign militaries to produce the most advanced, high-tech, high-powered weaponry for cannon, howitzer, and mortar systems. This National Historic Registered Landmark had revenue in fiscal year 2017 that exceeded $125 million and provides an annual economic benefit to the local community of nearly $100 million.