Col. Matthew L. Parker assumed command of the U.S. Army Aviation Center Logistics Command from Col. Stephen W. Owen during a change of command ceremony at the U.S. Army Aviation Museum on Fort Rucker, Alabama, July 13, 2022.
Maj. Gen. Todd Royar, commander for U.S. Army Aviation and Missile Command, facilitated the ceremonial passing of the unit colors from outgoing to incoming leader.
Royar talked about the complexities of the job faced by Owen, what a great organization ACLC is and the successes Owen achieved during his tenure.
“Nothing pilot training wise can happen here unless there are aircraft available to fly,” said Royar. “Steve [Owen] and his team have done exactly that. They’ve initiated the movement. They’ve enabled [Maj.] Gen. [David] Francis to accomplish his requirement – our requirement to the Army – of training pilots.
Royar said the efforts of Owen and the ACLC team have made a difference in the readiness race at Fort Rucker as well as the challenges faced during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Steve, through his leadership, has built a great team – not only with AMCOM, but with [Maj. Gen. David Francis] and [U.S. Army Aviation Center of Excellence], and our great industry partners to make sure everything is done right,” said Royar. “Steve, thank you so much for your leadership.
“Results matter and results count. Readiness rates, on average, are higher today than they have been in decades. The number of hours flown has gone up over the past few years. Steve’s influence has not only been here, but in Fort Sill [Oklahoma] and other locations. You’ve done a phenomenal job and you absolutely made a difference.”
Royar welcomed Parker to the AMCOM family and pointed out the fact that, for a few days at least, two of AMCOM’s O-6 level commands would be headed up by two Parkers. His brother, Col. Joseph Parker, recently participated in his own change of command ceremony as he departed Corpus Christi Army Depot in Texas.
“Matt, we welcome you and your family to the team. We know you have an incredible amount of experience that will lend itself and allow you to take us to even greater heights,” said Royar. “I look forward to working with you and to future successes.”
Owen thanked all the guests in attendance and spoke about the importance of teamwork – in and outside the gates of Fort Rucker.
“In the Army, everything is accomplished through teamwork, and I would like to use the opportunity I have today to thank the many people and organizations who have contributed to the many missions that ACLC is a part of.”
Owen said he’s had the opportunity to work with some truly outstanding industry partners and expressed his appreciation to the thousands of M-1 employees by thanking them for their contribution to Army aviation. He welcomed Parker to the team and said the new commander is a perfect fit for ACLC.
“This organization will absolutely thrive under your leadership,” said Owen. “I wish you and [your wife] the absolute best. Tradition of excellence. Of the best. Vigilant 6 signing off.”
Parker thanked Royar for his trust and confidence in him and expressed his gratitude to Owen for a great handover.
“Thank you all – our families, guests, mentors and senior leaders, especially those that helped us get here,” said Parker, who also thanked members of his family in the audience and watching online. He also gave a special shout out to his brother as he prepared to give up his command at CCAD.
“It’s a privilege to take over for Col. Steve Owen. Seeing all the team’s great accomplishments and momentum that you put forth. To the ACLC team and all the associated military, civilian and contract workforce: What you do here directly impacts the Army and prepares the future fighting force. Thank you for what you’ve done and what you’re going to do as we continue this fight together.
“It is truly an honor and privilege to join this great organization and continue its ongoing mission to support the future warfighters of this great nation. Army strong. Ever vigilant.”