CHARLOTTE, N.C. –
Maj. Gen. William Dyer III assumed duties as the commander of the 108th Training Command (Initial Entry Training) from Maj. Gen. Andrew Juknelis during a Change of Command Ceremony November 20 at the unit’s new headquarters in Charlotte, North Carolina.
A change of command is a military tradition that represents a transfer of authority and responsibility for a unit or command. The history, tradition, and accomplishments of the command are embodied in the colors. The passing of colors from an outgoing commander to an incoming commander ensures that the unit and its Soldiers are never without official leadership, represents a continuation of trust, and signifies an allegiance of Soldiers to their unit's commander.
Maj. Gen. Eugene LeBoeuf, the deputy commanding general for the U.S. Army Reserve, presided over the ceremony. He recognized Juknelis for his leadership and reflected on his achievements during his time at the 108th.
“I’m very happy and honored,” said LeBoeuf. “Gen. Andrew Juknelis, as you saw, really didn’t want to give up those colors here today, but that’s all a hallmark of a great commander. That command becomes a part of you, and it will always be that way. He is a great leader, mentor, family advocate, top notch harmonica player… and his efforts has contributed significantly to recruiting and retention.”
LeBoeuf then continued and introduced Dyer, whose last assignment was the U.S. Army Reserve Legal Command in Gaithersburg, Maryland, to the 108th and its three divisions, the 95th, 98th and 104th Training Divisions who were present at the ceremony.
“I’m excited to congratulate General Dyer on his selection as the next commander of the 108th Training Command,” he said. “We know he’s going to do great things as he takes the reigns of one of the Army’s and [Training and Doctrine Command’s] most impactful commands. I can assure you, the 108th is in great hands, with Gen. Dyer.”
Juknelis also welcomed Dyer to the team as he reflected on his tenure of command and thanking all of Soldiers who are a part of the mighty 108th.
“General Dyer, this is such a wonderful day,” said Juknelis. “I really wanted you to meet all these excellent teammates to see the great collective effort from across the Army that gets behind the Soldiers, civilians, and families of the 108th, every day.
“Between our unit and our teammates, you and I are literally surrounded by people that care about training the best Army in the world and taking care of each other.”
Juknelis went on to address Dyer directly, “as all the commanders here know, I have the utmost respect for those of you who volunteer to lead and shoulder the risk, and that goes for you, too, Bill. Respect. Congratulations to you, Jill, and your great Army family on your selection for command. I can’t think of anyone else I’d rather see take the reins. Your reputation precedes you and your thoughtful style of positive leadership will be an easy transition to this great formation.”
Dyer then took the podium, wished Juknelis luck in his next position and then turned his attention to the divisions and Soldiers present to speak to them about ushering the future of the command.
“The Army of 2022 is superior in every way to the Army of 1922, and the Army of 1922 is superior in every way to the Army of 1822,” he said. “The Army didn’t get better over time because of radical transformation that happened in a flash, or because of a few great leaders, who happened on to the scene at a certain time. It happened because of systematic methodical improvement over time.”
“And that’s our challenge,” Dyer continued. “How do we turn an excellent command into a command that is somehow better? How do we turn great into greatest? Mission and people.”
To watch the full ceremony, go to the 108th Training Command YouTube page at https://youtu.be/1VjKmQ9yr70
To see more photographs from the ceremony, go to the 108th Flickr page at https://www.flickr.com/photos/108thtrainingcommand/albums/72177720303847437