By Mrs Jennifer Aldridge (USACE)July 8, 2011
WIESBADEN, Germany - The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Europe District received a new commander, Col. D. Peter Helmlinger, July 12 during a change of command ceremony at the Schloss Biebrich in Wiesbaden, Germany.
Col. J. Richard Jordan III, who is departing the district to attend the Industrial College of the Armed Forces in Washington, D.C., handed over command during the morning ceremony.
Presiding over the ceremony was Brig. Gen. Peter DeLuca, USACE North Atlantic Division commander, who praised Jordan for his success in overseeing many engineering and construction efforts during his interim five-month tenure with the Europe District.
"Trey Jordan has honestly been much more than a simple caretaker these past few months," said DeLuca. "In addition to keeping all the plates spinning, he has made exceptional progress on project close-outs and projects like the KMC Medical Center. I’ve been very impressed."
DeLuca then welcomed Helmlinger to the Europe District.
"Col. Pete Helmlinger has been an astute and excellent leader, engineer and negotiator throughout his career. He led his battalion superbly during the surge in Iraq while serving under my command and I am excited to be on a team with him again," DeLuca said. "He is absolutely prepared for this job at this important time considering our role in Europe, Africa and the near East."
Helmlinger’s vast leadership and engineering experience will serve as a strong foundation as he takes command of the Europe District. It is the district’s mission to provide planning, design, construction, environmental services and project management to meet customer infrastructure requirements throughout Europe and Africa.
Helmlinger is no stranger to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. He most recently served as assistant director of Civil Works for USACE in Washington, D.C. The Civil Works Directorate is a major component of the Corps and its programs involve water resource development activities, including flood control, navigation, recreation, and infrastructure and environmental stewardship.
The incoming commander, commissioned from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point in 1988, has held a variety of key positions throughout his career. His challenging and varied engineering roles have prepared him to take on the responsibilities of leading the Europe District.
He has served as the Platoon Leader in the 65th Engineer Battalion, 25th Infantry Division (Light) at Schofield Barracks, Hawaii; the Aide-de-Camp, U.S. Army Engineer Division Pacific Ocean at Fort Shafter, Hawaii; the Company Commander, 14th Engineer Battalion (Corps) (Wheeled) at Fort Lewis, Wash.; the S-1, 14th Engineer Battalion at Fort Ord, Calif.; the Engineer Operations Officer, I (US) Corps at Fort Lewis; the Project Engineer, Far East Engineer District at Camp Casey, Korea; the Brigade XO, 130th Engineer Brigade in Hanau, Germany; the Battalion S-3 and XO, 54th Engineer Battalion (Corps) (Mechanized) in Bamberg, Germany; and the Brigade XO, 555th Combat Support Brigade (Maneuver Enhancement) at Fort Lewis.
While serving as commander of the 14th Engineer Battalion, Helmlinger led the unit during a 15-month deployment to Operation Iraqi Freedom, where the battalion conducted IED route clearance and construction, and Iraqi Army training in support of four Multi-National Divisions.
Helmlinger holds a Master’s degree in Civil Engineering from Stanford University and is a graduate of the Industrial College of the Armed Forces, the Command and General Staff College and the Combined Arms Services Staff School.
His most prominent awards and decorations include the Bronze Star Medal, Meritorious Service Medal, Army Commendation Medal, Army Achievement Medal, Meritorious Unit Commendation, Iraq Campaign Medal, Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary and Service Medals, Korea Defense Service Medal, Humanitarian Service Medal and German Armed Forces Efficiency Badge. He is a recipient of the Army Engineer Association Bronze de Fleury Medal. Helmlinger is a registered Professional Engineer in Virginia.