NEW COMMANDER TAKES REINS OF 108TH TC

05/26/2020  |  Story by Sgt. H. Marcus McGill 81st Readiness Division PAO
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Maj. Gen. Andrew Juknelis takes a few moments during his change of command ceremony to address his new unit, the 108th Training Command (IET), Charlotte, N.C. Juknelis expressed his excitement to be back on the “best coast” and his enthusiasm for the new challenges and successes awaiting him here.​​​​​​​ U.S. Army Reserve photo by Sgt. 1st Class Lisa M Litchfield

Story by Sgt. H. Marcus McGill
81st Readiness Division PAO

Photos by Sgt. H. Marcus McGill
81st Readiness Division PAO and
Sgt. 1st Class Lisa M. Litchfield
108th TC PAO

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Maj. Gen. Andrew Juknelis took the reins of the 108th Training Command, Initial Entry Training (IET) Feb. 8, 2020, during a ceremony at the U.S. Reserve Center before Soldiers, friends, family and distinguished guests.

“Lead them well, be an example, and keep them safe. If you do those three things, you will be a successful commander.”— Deputy Commanding General, Maj. Gen. A.C. Roper

Maj. Gen. Kate Leahy, relinquished command after approximately 16 months; her next assignment is with the Department of the Army, G-2/Intelligence, at the Pentagon.

“This ceremony represents the pinnacle of career achievement for both the outgoing and the incoming commanders,” said Deputy Commanding General, Maj. Gen. A.C. Roper, U.S. Army Reserve Headquarters, who hosted the change of command. “It represents over 100 years of Army traditions. It is significant because it is a public demonstration of the continuity of leadership.”

Juknelis was assigned to the 108th TC (IET) after completing a successful assignment as the 8th Army, Republic of Korea wartime chief of staff. He said he was excited to move to the East Coast with his wife, Mei, where they will be closer to family, but also to tackle the challenges that his new command will offer.

“I am really anxious about the roll out of the new Army Combat Fitness Test, and also we need to get our drill sergeant ranks up for the Army. I’m pleased to dig in and be a part of this,” he said.

Command Sgt. Maj. Todd Priest, 108th Training Command (IET) Command Sgt. Maj. Salutes during the National Anthem from his honorary position behind the color guard. U.S. Army Reserve photo by Sgt. 1st Class Lisa M. Litchfield

“The Army counts on the 108th, every Soldier and civilian on this team, to perform the essential mission of turning ordinary citizen volunteers into extraordinary Soldiers – the most competent, fit, and resilient Soldiers in the world,” she said.

She boasted not only of her pride in the overall mission of the 108th, but in the accomplishments of individual Soldiers as well. Leahy mentioned Sgt. Joshua Smith, 1st Brigade, 95th Division, who was selected as the 2019 Army Reserve noncommissioned officer of the year and Staff Sgt. Sandra Uptagrafft of the 98th Division, who is a 2012 Olympian and on her way to becoming a member of the 2020 Olympic pistol team.

Safeguarding the colors during the 108th Training Command (IET) change of command are Drill Sergeants from the 98th Training Division (IET), supervised by 108th Command Sgt. Maj., Command Sgt. Maj. Todd Priest. U.S. Army Reserve photo by Sgt. 1st Class Lisa M. Litchfield.

Roper and Leahy both closed their remarks with some words of wisdom and advice for the new commander.

“Lead them well, be an example, and keep them safe. If you do those three things, you will be a successful commander,” he told Juknelis.

Leahy directed her advice not just to her successor, but to all Soldiers in attendance.

“Make every day count,” she said. “Make yourself stronger, better, make your unit more ready, help a fellow Soldier or a civilian coworker or Army family member. Make a difference, make every day matter.”

Maj. Gen. A.C. Roper, deputy commanding general of the United States Army Reserve, passes the 108th Training Command (IET) colors, signifying the transfer of command authority, into the waiting hands of Maj. Gen. Andrew Juknelis. U.S. Army Reserve photo by Sgt. 1st Class Lisa M. Litchfield

Maj. Gen. Kate Leahy, outgoing commander, 108th Training Command, Initial Entry Training (IET), passes the colors to Maj. Gen. A.C. Roper, deputy commanding general, U.S. Army Reserve Headquarters, during the change of command ceremony Feb. 8, 2020. U.S. Army photo by Sgt. H. Marcus McGill Deputy Commanding General, Maj. Gen. A.C. Roper, U.S. Army Reserve Headquarters, (center), hosts the change of command ceremony for Maj. Gen. Kate Leahy, outgoing commander, and Maj. Gen. Andrew Juknelis, incoming commander, 108th Training Command, Initial Entry Training (IET) Feb. 8, 2020. U.S. Army photo by Sgt. H. Marcus McGill
Maj. Gen. A.C. Roper, deputy commanding general, U.S. Army Reserve Headquarters, (center), hosts a change of command ceremony for the 108th Training Command, Initial Entry Training (IET) Feb. 8, 2020. Incoming Commander Maj. Gen. Andrew Juknelis, leads Maj. Gen. A.C. Roper and Maj. Gen. Kate Leahy out of the drill hall at the conclusion of the ceremony. U.S. Army photo by Sgt. H. Marcus McGill Maj. Generals Kate Leahy, A.C. Roper, and Andrew Juknelis, join friends, family, and distinguished guests during the presentation of the colors. Maj. Gen. Juknelis assumed command of the 108th Training Command, Initial Entry Training (IET) Feb. 8, 2020. U.S. Army photo by Sgt. H. Marcus McGill

 

Incoming commander Maj. Gen. Andrew Juknelis completes the transfer of command authority by returning the colors to their guardian, 108th Training Command (IET) Command Sgt. Maj. Todd Priest. U.S. Army Reserve photo by Sgt. 1st Class Lisa M. Litchfield Deputy Commanding General, Maj. Gen. A.C. Roper, U.S. Army Reserve Headquarters, (center), hosts the change of command ceremony for Maj. Gen. Kate Leahy, outgoing commander, and Maj. Gen. Andrew Juknelis, incoming commander, 108th Training Command, Initial Entry Training (IET) Feb. 8, 2020. U.S. Army photo by Sgt. H. Marcus McGill

 

Above: The color guard, made up of drill sergeants from the 98th Training Division, Initial Entry Training (IET), exits the drill hall at the conclusion of the change of command ceremony held Feb. 8, 2020. “You epitomize excellence, you are the best of the best,” said Maj. Gen. Kate Leahy, outgoing commander 108th Training Command, Initial Entry Training (IET), as she described the noncommissioned officers who bore the colors. U.S. Army Photo by Sgt. H. Marcus McGill

 

 

 

 

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