The Program Executive Office for Army Aviation introduced its new sergeant major, as Sgt. Maj. Carlos Loeza assumed the role from Sgt. Maj. Roy (Woody) Sullivan during a change of responsibility ceremony Thursday, January 27.
The ceremony was officiated by the program executive officer Brig. Gen. Rob Barrie.
Sullivan, the first ever PEO Aviation Sergeant Major, held the position since June 2018.
Loeza comes to PEO Aviation from Fort Hood Tx., where he previously served as the Command Sergeant Major for the 1st Air Cavalry Brigade.
“I'm excited to contribute to Army Aviation modernization and acquisition, and look forward to learning and contributing alongside each one of you,” said Loeza. "I am humbled to serve as a leader in PEO Aviation, and I will serve proudly and conduct myself as a professional during every interaction.”
A native of El Paso, Texas, Loeza entered the Army in 1999 as an aircraft structural repairer.
In a separate retirement ceremony held later in the afternoon, Sullivan brought to close an Army career that spanned almost four decades.
“He is an inspiration as someone who has dedicated his life of service to us, service to our Soldiers and service to his country,” Barrie said during about Sullivan’s commitment to duty over the course of his career.
Before his groundbreaking role as the first PEO Aviation Sergeant Major, Sullivan served as the Command Sergeant Major of the 59th Aviation Troop Command at McEntire Joint National Guard Base in Eastover, South Carolina.
Sullivan began his service in 1984 when he enlisted into the Army to become an Attack Helicopter Repairer. He attended Basic Combat Training at Fort McClellan, Alabama, and Advance Individual Training at Fort Eustis, Virginia. He remained on active duty for three years, spending two and a half years in the 101st Airborne (Air Assault), before joining the South Carolina Army National Guard. He subsequently served in numerous leadership positions with increasing responsibility including, section sergeant, platoon sergeant, first sergeant, and command sergeant major.
With his wife, Kim, and their daughter, Tori, in the audience, he thanked them along with other family members and colleagues for their support over the course of a career he called “a great ride with so many awesome memories along the way.”
During his remarks, Sullivan said three very important ingredients to his career success were people and friendships, the steady counsel and candid feedback of mentors, and his father’s advice to leave places better than he found them.
He also said that as a Soldier, he relied on a primary tenet that he has carried from his first day in the Army, and believes will help guide the next generation of Soldiers and leaders.
“Take care of the organization and the organization will take care of you,” he said.
Sullivan earned numerous awards and medals over the course of his career including the Legion of Merit, Bronze Star, Meritorious Service Medal and Global War On Terrorism Expedition Medal.