FORT DETRICK, Md. -- Every great Army commander makes sacrifices.
They are responsible.
That was the message of Gen. Gus Perna, who said he sees those qualities and many others in Col. Michael B. Lalor -- all of which make him the ideal choice to serve as the first commander of the Army Medical Logistics Command, ceremoniously activated Sept. 17.
"Command is a privilege. It is one that is earned to receive and one that is earned to keep," said Perna, the Army's senior logistician and commanding general of Army Materiel Command. "I am proud to say that Col. Mike Lalor has what it takes to command."
On a historic day for the AMLC, Perna shared messages of appreciation to leadership and underscored Lalor's exemplary record in welcoming the AMC's new major subordinate command during an activation ceremony at Fort Detrick located in Frederick, Maryland.
Just before Perna's remarks, Lalor joined the four-star general to uncase the Army field flag, representing the AMLC as a new organization. Immediately after the uncasing, Lalor assumed command of the AMLC through the ceremonial passing of the flag.
"It is my great honor to join your team and to serve as your commander," Lalor told the many people in attendance for the ceremony, including members of his family and distinguished guests. "You are ready and we are officially on the clock."
Headquartered at Fort Detrick, the AMLC was provisionally activated on June 1, as part of a restructuring to become the Army's primary medical logistics and sustainment command, responsible for managing the global supply chain and medical materiel readiness across the total force.
The AMLC has three direct reporting units, including the U.S. Army Medical Materiel Agency, the U.S. Army Medical Materiel Center-Europe and the U.S. Army Medical Materiel Center-Korea.
Looking out across the auditorium, Perna was quick to credit Col. Timothy D. Walsh, Sgt. Maj. Corey A. Lord and others who served in dual-hatted roles between AMLC and USAMMA during the command's formation process.
"The effort of this community -- this team -- has been exceptional," Perna said. "And it has been … a seamless transition."
Distinguished guests included Assistant Secretary Of Defense for Sustainment Robert McMahon and Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary Of Defense for Sustainment Peter Potochney, as well as representatives from various elected officials and leaders from AMC and the U.S. Army Medical Research and Development Command.
Lalor comes to the AMLC after serving as the military assistant to the assistant secretary of defense for sustainment in Washington, D.C. Before that, he served as commander of the 1st Armored Division Sustainment Brigade at Fort Bliss, Texas.
Lalor said he is thankful for his family and the opportunity to lead the new command, but also to join a new Army family in the AMC. He, too, expressed appreciation to Walsh and the AMLC team for their work to get the organization to this point.
The medical logistics community has done, "invaluable work for generations, especially over the past 18 years in Iraq and Afghanistan," Lalor said.
He pledged to continue building on the Army's logistics processes and capabilities to prepare and maintain readiness for future challenges on new battlefields.
"This AMLC team is ready to attack our mission," Lalor said. "… Both now and in the future, we will be called to deliver, to execute, and we are ready to go."