FORT GEORGE G. MEADE, Md. – Maj. Gen. Gary W. Johnston, commanding general, U.S. Army Intelligence and Security Command (INSCOM), hosted a virtual change of command ceremony in which Col. Brian D. Vile relinquished his command of the 780th Military Intelligence Brigade (Cyber) to Col. Matthew J. Lennox on July 2.
Activated on October 1, 2011, the 780th MI Brigade is the only offensive cyberspace operations brigade in the U.S. Army. The organization executes its mission to conduct cyberspace operations in support of Army and Joint requirements through two battalions spread across four states, and also supports both Task Force Echo, the National Guard’s largest activated cyber force, and the 915th Cyber Warfare Battalion which provides cyber support at the tactical level.
The COVID-19 pandemic precluded a formal change of command ceremony which would have included Soldiers and Army Civilians representing the brigade’s subordinate units, however, in his remarks, Johnston highlighted the brigade’s accomplishments over the past two years, including supporting effects delivery in every area of operations, and directly supporting each of the four Services.
“(Vile) trained the Army’s best cyber Soldiers, expanded operational capacity through improved infrastructure procurement, increased cyber capabilities development, and provided tactical support to the warfighter through the standup of the Cyber Warfare Battalion,” said Johnston. “Although we cannot speak about many of the accomplishments of this unit, Col. Vile’s most significant contribution to the brigade was his focus on the professionalism of the unit and his desire to take care of the Soldiers and Civilians; he held the leadership principle that people come first, and to Col. Vile, people always came first.”
In his remarks, Vile recalled a moment two years ago when he was waiting to take command of the 780th MI Brigade “a senior leader pulled me to the side and told me I was being given the opportunity to lead the crown jewel of the United States Army. The smartest Soldiers, the toughest mission, and the best leaders.”
Vile thanked and recognized the Praetorian Soldiers and Army Civilians for leading the way and solving America’s most difficult problems in the cyber and information domain.
“The Praetorians consistently push the limits, drive the conversation, and set the example for others to follow. From our developers to our operators, from Hawaii to Fort Gordon, the members of the 780th are agile and adaptive, building innovative solutions to achieve national objectives. The fruits of our efforts literally lead the news, and every day we stand ready to use cyber effects to deter, and when directed, defeat, our adversaries in and through cyberspace,” said Vile. “None of these accomplishments are mine. They are the work of the Praetorians.”
Johnston also welcomed the new commander of the 780th MI Brigade, Col. Matt Lennox and his Family, who comes to INSCOM from the U.S. Army War College.
“(Lennox) is a former National Mission Team leader and battalion commander from within the Brigade, having led the 782d MI Battalion (Cyber Legion),” said Johnston. “Matt, we look forward to working with you as we move forward together. You are the right leader, at the right time, at the right place for the 780th.”
Vile had these parting comments for Lennox.
“To Matt and Amy Lennox, my sincere welcome back to the Praetorian team,” said Vile. “You know the Brigade, you know the mission, and you know leadership. I have no doubts that you will lead the Praetorians, the crown jewel of the United States Army, with compassion, caring, and a commitment to our Soldiers and Civilians.”