ROCK ISLAND ARSENAL, Ill. – The Joint Munitions Command held its change of command ceremony, June 11, at its headquarters at Rock Island Arsenal, during which Brig. Gen. Michelle M.T. Letcher addressed the JMC one last time as she turned the ammunition command over to Col. Gavin J. Gardner.
Letcher thanked the workforce for its unwavering efforts during the two years she was in command. She welcomed Gardner to JMC and said, “I know you will embrace this organization and take it in directions I cannot even imagine.”
Letcher will move to Fort Lee, Va., where she will be the Commandant for the U.S. Army Ordnance School, U.S. Army Sustainment Center of Excellence, at Fort Lee.
From 2018 to 2020, Gardner served as the Director of the Commanding General’s Initiatives Group and as the Commanding General’s Executive Officer at Army Materiel Command, Redstone Arsenal, Ala.
Leading from a new helm, Gardner looks forward to providing Joint Warfighters with ammunition for training and for theater.
To the staff of JMC he said, “My family and I are truly humbled and honored to serve with you in this great Quad Cities’ community. Together, I know we will all continue to build upon the proud tradition and legacy of support that is the foundation of the Joint Munitions Command.”
Gen. Gus Perna, commander, Army Materiel Command, served as the officiating officer and spoke of Letcher’s accomplishments, while welcoming Gardner to JMC.
“Michelle came to JMC with an exemplary record of achievement leading complex, global organizations, and she both extended and increased that record during the past two years. Michelle, here you have created an organization that is set to move forward,” said Perna.
Perna then turned from the outgoing commander to the incoming commander and said, “Gavin joins JMC after having served as the director of my initiatives group and my XO at AMC, so he knows JMC very well. He knows your mission, and he will take the fruits of that effort and take JMC to the next level.”
“Gavin, this is my charge to you,” Perna said. “Focus on readiness and the output to the Warfighter. Be accountable, and hold others accountable. Challenge the status quo. Put people first. Take care of them, and they will take care of the mission.”
“Gen. Perna, thank you for your trust and confidence in me, and your support of me, to lead the Joint Munitions Command. I am truly humbled by this opportunity to command this first-class organization. I will assure you that, collectively, we will provide nothing less than world-class munitions support to the Joint Warfighter,” Gardner said.
The Joint Munitions Command produces small-, medium- and large-caliber ammunition items for the Department of Defense. The JMC is the logistics integrator for life-cycle management of ammunition and provides a global presence of technical support to U.S. combat units wherever they are stationed or deployed. The JMC’s logistics operation is unique to the Department of Defense and its industrial base is an important asset in supporting the Warfighter.