18th MEDCOM gets a transition in leadership

| October 24, 2015 | 0 Comments
Col. Ann M. Sammartino (right), commander, 18th MEDCOM (DS), passes the guidon of HHC to incoming company com- mander, Capt. McKinsey Hulen, during a change of command ceremony on historic Palm Circle, Fort Shafter, Oct. 16. (Photo by Sgt. 1st Class John D. Brown, 18th Medical Command)

Col. Ann M. Sammartino (right), commander, 18th MEDCOM (DS), passes the guidon of HHC to incoming company com- mander, Capt. McKinsey Hulen, during a change of command ceremony on historic Palm Circle, Fort Shafter, Oct. 16. (Photo by Sgt. 1st Class John D. Brown, 18th Medical Command)

Sgt. 1st Class John D. Brown
Army News Service

FORT SHAFTER — Soldiers and leaders of the 18th Medical Command (Deployment Support) welcomed a new commander to Headquarters and Headquarters Company (HHC) during a change of command ceremony on historic Palm Circle, here, Oct. 16.

After welcoming the distinguished guests, families and various attendees, Col. Ann M. Sammartino, the commander of 18th MEDCOM (DS), said, “Company command is probably the toughest, most difficult, challenging and demanding assignment for a junior officer … but it is also the most exciting, exhilarating and rewarding assignment.”

Capt. Robert Modlin, the outgoing commander of HHC, 18th MEDCOM (DS), spent nearly 18 months as the unit’s commander.

Col. Ann M. Sammartino, the commander of 18th Medical Command (Deployment Support), pins the Army's Meritorious Service Medal on Capt. Robert Modlin prior to his change of command ceremony on historic Palm Circle at Fort Shafter, Hawaii, Oct. 16, 2015, where Modlin relinquished command of Headquarters and Headquarters Company to Capt. McKinsey Hulen. (Photo by Sgt. 1st Class John Brown, 18th Medical Command (Deployment Support) Public Affairs Office)

Col. Ann M. Sammartino, the commander of 18th Medical Command (Deployment Support), pins the Army’s Meritorious Service Medal on Capt. Robert Modlin prior to his change of command ceremony on historic Palm Circle at Fort Shafter, Hawaii, Oct. 16, 2015, where Modlin relinquished command of Headquarters and Headquarters Company to Capt. McKinsey Hulen. (Photo by Sgt. 1st Class John Brown, 18th Medical Command (Deployment Support) Public Affairs Office)

“While in command, Capt. Modlin and the HHC staff planned and executed small arms ranges, supported major theater exercises, executed safe haven operations, and prepared multiple Soldiers, NCOs (noncommissioned officers) and officers for career education schools and demanding badge earning events, such as Air Assault School and the Expert Field Medical Badge,” said Sammartino. “So, I think you could say Capt. Modlin and his team have had their hands full.”

Modlin summed up his time in command by saying, “If I were to characterize my tenure leading HHC, I would describe it as one of continuous adaptation, theater-driven requirement and teamwork.”

In turning the leadership of the unit over to the new commander, Modlin shared some closing remarks for the Soldiers of the 18th MEDCOM (DS).

“Here, there are limitless avenues to innovate, inspire and create positive change, both inside the unit and across the theater. I ask that each of you continue to challenge yourselves to be a part of that positive momentum.”

With that, Modlin passed the reigns of HHC to Capt. McKinsey Hulen.

“You are definitely the right leader, at the right time, to take this organization forward … turning over the company, while difficult for me, is made much easier knowing it’s in your sure and steady hands,” he said.

Capt. Robert Modlin stands in front of Soldiers of Headquarters and Headquarters Company for a final time as the unit commander prior to a change of command ceremony on historic Palm Circle at Fort Shafter, Hawaii on Oct. 16, 2015. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. 1st Class John Brown, 18th Medical Command (Deployment Support) Public Affairs Office)

Capt. Robert Modlin stands in front of Soldiers of Headquarters and Headquarters Company for a final time as the unit commander prior to a change of command ceremony on historic Palm Circle at Fort Shafter, Hawaii on Oct. 16, 2015. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. 1st Class John Brown, 18th Medical Command (Deployment Support) Public Affairs Office)

Hulen, a 2011 graduate of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, New York, is no stranger to the Pacific region having served as the aide-de-camp to the Pacific Regional Medical Command commander, commander of Tripler Army Medical Center and chief of the Medical Service Corps in Honolulu.

Sammartino welcomed Hulen into the 18th MEDCOM (DS) ohana (family) and told the Soldiers of the unit that, “All of you in the 18th can feel confident that you’re getting an outstanding leader. There is no doubt that the strength of the Army and the 18th MEDCOM (DS) is in dedicated people and a strong team.”

Following the ceremony, a reception was held to allow Soldiers, friends and families to bid farewell to Modlin and welcome Hulen into the unit.

Modlin can look forward to his next assignment in Fort Bragg, North Carolina, and his wedding later this month.

(Note: Brown works with 18th MEDCOM (Deployment Support) Public Affairs.)

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Category: Army News Service, Change of command, Leadership, News

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