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New commander, status for 593rd troops

‘We want to be as efficient as possible without losing effectiveness,’ new leader tells Soldiers

Northwest Guardian

Published: 01:27PM August 29th, 2013
New commander, status for 593rd troops

Scott Hansen/Northwest Guardian

New 593rd ESC commander Col. (P) Kurt Ryan, right, receives the brigade colors from Maj. Gen. Kenneth Dahl Aug. 22 during a joint change of command and change of responsibility ceremony on Watkins Field.

The 593rd Sustainment Brigade ceremonially cased its colors Aug. 22 at Joint Base Lewis-McChord’s Watkins Field, converting the unit to the 593rd Expeditionary Sustainment Command, the Army’s fourth, while welcoming its new commander, Col. (P) Kurt Ryan.

The 593rd ESC came into existence about six weeks ago and brigade signs were traded out with ESC signs across JBLM Lewis North, where the command is headquartered. Last week’s ceremony made official the change of command and the unit’s new status.

The ceremony also included the commmand sergeant major’s change of responsibility, as outgoing Command Sgt. Maj. Eric Taylor gave way to incoming Command Sgt. Maj. Erik Frey.

The unit redesignation authorizes an additional general officer command at JBLM, aligning the 593rd ESC command under I Corps. Ryan will be promoted to brigadier general within a few weeks. His new command is designed to alleviate some of the I Corps administrative load by acting as headquarters for the 42nd Military Police Brigade and the 62nd Medical Brigade.

“As we align with the Pacific, we complete the work by ensuring all units have a general officer headquarters in their chain,” said Maj. Gen. Kennth Dahl, I Corps deputy commanding general, reviewing officer for the ceremony. “We want to be as efficient as possible without losing effectiveness.”

During a recent deployment, the 593rd Sust. Bde. took charge of closing military bases in Iraq and Afghanistan and coordinated the return of military equipment to U.S. bases. Dahl praised the unit for meeting all drawdown and theater closing requirements.

The 593rd ESC will still focus on plans and operations, but it will gain more experienced senior leadership, who will focus their attention on the I Corps goal of partnering with militaries across the Pacific.

Ryan is a 26-year Soldier with experience in Desert Shield, Desert Storm, Bosnia, Croatia, Operation Iraqi Freedom and humanitarian efforts in support of Hurricane Katrina. In 2012, he completed his third deployment to Afghanistan where he served as commander of the 10th Sustainment Brigade. He most recently served on the staff of the assistant secretary of Defense for logistics and material readiness in the Office of the Secretary of Defense at the Pentagon.

“I’ve never been stationed west of Fort Leavenworth, Kan.,” said Ryan, who took eight days to drive across the country with his wife, Jennifer, and daughter Madison, 14. “We’re going to love it out here.”

Colonel Douglas McBride Jr. relinquished command to Ryan after bringing the 593rd Sust. Bde. back from Afghanistan. McBride will serve next at the Combined Arms Support Command, Fort Lee, Va.

Frey last served with the 45th Sustainment Brigade at Schofield Barracks, Hawaii. Taylor’s next assignment is the 16th Sustainment Brigade in Bramburg, Germany.