10th Regional Support Group in Okinawa welcomes new commander
By Sgt. 1st Class Howard Reed
10th Regional Support Group Public Affairs
U.S. Army photos by Chip Steitz
Col. Sheila A. Bryant accepts the 10th RSG guidon from Maj. Gen. Michael T. Harrison, commander of U.S. Army Japan and I Corps (Forward). Bryant became the 23rd commander of the 10th RSG. Col. Lance R. Koenig, who commanded the unit and has been the senior Army commander on Okinawa since July 2010, will move on to his next assignment as the G3 at the 8th Theater Sustainment Command at Fort Shafter, Hawaii.
TORII STATION, Okinawa - Col. Sheila A. Bryant took over command of the 10th Regional Support Group from outgoing commander Col. Lance R. Koenig during a ceremony held Tuesday at the landing zone here.
Approximately 300 service members and Japanese and American civilians witnessed the ceremony, which was presided over by Maj. Gen. Michael T. Harrison, commander of U.S. Army Japan and I Corps (Forward).
Bryant is a recent graduate of the Naval War College in Newport, R.I. In her remarks immediately after taking command of the 10th RSG, she thanked everyone for their attendance and said she looked forward to establishing a dialogue and a great partnership that incorporates the spirit of "Ichi Dan," Japanese for "One Team."
"To the Soldiers arrayed on the field today, this team of teams is impressive and they represent the strength of our great bilateral relationship and joint cooperation," said Bryant. "My hope is that 24 months from now, the ties that bond us together will become even closer."
Harrison expressed his gratitude to Koenig and his family for their commitment and dedication during his tenure supporting the Pacific Command’s Theater Security Cooperation Program.
"Your hard work and dedication to mission accomplishment have made this command a shining example for all to emulate," Harrison told Koenig during his remarks. "Thank you for a job well done."
(From left): Col. Sheila A. Bryant, incoming commander of the 10th Regional Support Group; Deputy Commander Lt. Col. Kevin Bobbitt, deputy commander; and Col. Lance R. Koenig, outgoing commander, inspect troops during the unit’s change-of-command ceremony held Tuesday at Torii Station, Okinawa.
The USARJ commander also relayed to the audience that the 10th RSG’s legacy of service through support for the region was further cemented during the humanitarian relief efforts after the Great East Japan Earthquake struck the northeastern area of Japan in March 2011.
The unit served as part of the Joint Logistical Task Force 10 and worked with their Japanese counterparts, the Japanese Self-Defense Forces, offering humanitarian aid in the areas affected by the disaster. In the weeks and months that followed, the combined U.S. and Japanese military effort, referred to Operation Tomodachi, supported Japan with a wide array of disaster-relief efforts. Tomodachi is the Japanese word for "friend." The operation, the largest in Japan since World War II, took place from March 12 through May 4 and involved the support of 24,000 U.S. service members and 106,000 JSDF members.
"This headquarters is a proven asset to the defense of Japan, stability in the Far East, and contingencies throughout the region," said Harrison.
Bryant is a graduate of the University of North Carolina Pembroke, where she received her commission in 1988 through the Army’s Reserve Officer Training Corps program.
Her assignments include deployments to Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm, Operation Iraqi Freedom and Combined Forces Command Afghanistan, where she served as the liaison officer to the J2 and the deputy director for the Defense Intelligence Agency at Combined Media Processing Center Qatar. She also served as the commander of the 83rd Ordnance Battalion in Japan, and the Defense Logistics Agency Pacific in Hawaii.
Koenig, who commanded the 10th RSG since July 2010, will move on to his next assignment as the G3 at the 8th Theater Sustainment Command at Fort Shafter, Hawaii.