SCHINNEN, Netherlands - Lt. Col. Chad Arcand assumed command of U.S. Army Garrison Schinnen from Lt. Col. Fern Sumpter in a July 8 outdoor ceremony presided over by Col. Rick Tillotson, commander of USAG Benelux.
Arcand took command with the time-honored tradition of passing the garrison colors from the outgoing to the incoming commander. Adding an international flair, the Netherlands Army Band of Mounted Regiments provided ceremonial music.
Arcand said his priorities would be people, resources and operations. "USAG Schinnen has a history of high standards, and I plan to continue that tradition," Arcand said.
Speaking to an audience of American and Dutch officials from the military and civilian sectors, Arcand thanked the community for the warm welcome he and his family received and said he was looking forward to building on the good relationship USAG Schinnen enjoys with its Dutch neighbors.
Arcand comes to Schinnen from Hohenfels, Germany, where he was assigned to the Joint Multi-National Readiness Center. Arcand previously served a number of infantry assignments in the U.S. and Germany, including deployments to Iraq and Bosnia-Herzegovina. He is a graduate of the Infantry Officer Basic and Advance Courses and the Command and General Staff College. He holds a bachelors degree from the University of Minnesota and a master's degree from Webster University.
Sumpter commanded USAG Schinnen since June 14, 2008. Under her leadership, the garrison achieved recognition for numerous accomplishments, including two consecutive Army Community of Excellence awards in 2009 and 2010.
"Together we conquered huge challenges complicated by manpower shortages and budget constraints," Sumpter said. She told soldiers and civilians standing in formation, "I am most impressed by your dedication to the mission and your stubborn conviction to not let outside influences deter or degrade your service." Sumpter now departs Schinnen for a deployment to Afghanistan.
The Army has maintained a presence at Schinnen since 1969. As the only U.S. Army garrison in the Netherlands, USAG Schinnen provides base operations services to joint, interagency and international communities in support of U.S. interests in NATO throughout the Netherlands, northern Germany and northern Belgium.