AFC to celebrate arrival of new commanding general, exceptional contributions of founding leader

By Army Futures CommandOctober 4, 2022

The U.S. Army Futures Command Soldier Sleeve Insignia
The U.S. Army Futures Command Soldier Sleeve Insignia (Photo Credit: U.S. Army photo) VIEW ORIGINAL

AUSTIN, Texas – U.S. Army Futures Command (AFC) will host change of command and retirement ceremonies on Oct. 4 to celebrate the arrival of Gen. James E. Rainey as Commanding General and the retirement of Acting Commanding General Lt. Gen. James M. Richardson, whose exceptional career includes serving with the command since its inception.

The successive ceremonies will take place at the historic Lady Bird Johnson Auditorium on the University of Texas at Austin campus. Scheduled attendees include Secretary of the Army Christine E. Wormuth, former Secretary of the Army Ryan D. McCarthy, Rep. Terry M. Wilson of the Texas House of Representatives, Austin Mayor Steve Adler and other distinguished guests from the national defense sector and local Austin community.

Rainey, whose recent roles include G-3/5/7 Deputy Chief of Staff, Commanding General of the U.S. Army Combined Arms Center and Fort Leavenworth, and Commander of the Combined Security Transition Command-Afghanistan, is the second-ever general officer confirmed by Congress to lead the Army’s modernization-focused command, which stood up in 2018 under the leadership of then-Commanding General Gen. John M. Murray. Rainey is the recipient of numerous awards for exemplary service, including Defense Distinguished Service and Army Distinguished Service medals, and will bring extensive leadership experience to his new role.

Richardson, who joined AFC as a Deputy Commanding General in 2018 and has served as Acting Commanding General since 2021, will retire from the Army after four decades of outstanding service. A Master Army Aviator and recipient of Army Distinguished Service, Defense Superior Service, Legion of Merit and Distinguished Flying Cross medals, he has commanded Soldiers at every level, including in combat, and led Army units in the U.S., Korea, Kuwait, Iraq and Afghanistan. He has also been a major force in shaping the work and impacts of AFC; during his tenure, the command grew from a staff of roughly 20 people to a thriving command of more than 19,000 personnel, all working diligently to enable and accelerate Army modernization wins.

“The future is bright,” Richardson said as he reflected on what is next for AFC.

Members of the public and media are invited to view the ceremonies, which will commence at 10:00 a.m. Central Time, here.

Preceding the livestreamed change of command and retirement ceremonies, AFC will host another ceremony to recognize the promotion of Maj. Gen. Ross Coffman to the role of Lieutenant General. Coffman previously served as Director of AFC’s Next Generation Combat Vehicles Cross-Functional Team and has played a highly influential leadership role in the cohesive development of signature modernization efforts. Upon his promotion, he will assume the position of Deputy Commanding General of AFC.


About Army Futures Command:

Army Futures Command (AFC) is the operational architect of Army modernization – developing Army concepts, future force design, and requirements for future materiel. Headquartered in Austin, Texas, AFC has more than 19,000 people worldwide. The Army's six modernization priorities are the focus of AFC’s eight Cross-Functional Teams: Long Range Precision Fires; Next Generation Combat Vehicles; Future Vertical Lift; Network; Air and Missile Defense; Soldier Lethality; Assured Positioning, Navigation and Timing/Space; and Synthetic Training Environment. The Army Artificial Intelligence Integration Center, Army Software Factory and Army Applications Laboratory also support AFC efforts. Collaborating with entrepreneurs, scientists, industry and academia, AFC strives to create the best solutions to keep Soldiers safe and America strong.

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