Historic 100th welcomes female commander

| September 28, 2017 | 0 Comments

Capt. Carneen Cotton accepts the guidon from Lt. Col. Matthew Cloud herein accepting command of Charlie Company, 100th Infantry Battalion, 442nd Infantry Regiment, 9th Mission Support Command, Aug. 27. (U.S. Army photo by Pfc. Jordan Fanene, Charlie Co. 100th Inf. Bn, 442nd Inf. Reg., 9th MSC)

Captain Carneen Cotton takes command of Charlie Company, 100th Inf. Bn.

Sgt. Jessica DuVernay
305th Mobile Public Affairs Detachment
9th Mission Support Command

PAGO PAGO, American Samoa — Soldiers, community leaders and friends of Charlie Company, 100th Infantry Battalion, 442nd Infantry Regiment, 9th Mission Support Command, gathered, here, for a change of command ceremony, recently.

1st Lt. Talo A. Siva, the outgoing commander, passed the guidon to incoming commander Capt. Carneen Cotton.

The occasion was significant; the Army Reserve welcomed its first female infantry commander to the ranks.

“The opportunity to command and the understanding of the impact of that responsibility is difficult to quantify,” said Lt. Col. Matthew Cloud, commander, 100th Inf. Bn., 442nd Inf. Regt., 9th MSC. “A leader that steps forward to accept that responsibility, willingly and selflessly, sacrifices their time (and) demonstrates a sincere commitment to those Soldiers for which they are responsible.”

Siva had only been a first lieutenant for two months before he was offered the command of Charlie Company. He successfully led and guided the Soldiers to maintain the pride the unit carried being part of the 100th Bn.

“1st Lt. Siva willingly accepted that responsibility as his duty to this unit and selflessly placed the needs of the battalion above his own,” said Cloud. “Thank you for accepting that challenge and providing leadership to the unit.”

“It (has) been an honor serving as the company commander for Charlie Co.,” Siva said as he gave his final speech. “I served with the best men the Army could ever offer.”

Cotton is not new to change and embraces it as a new chapter in her military career. She previously served as the Cadet Summer Training Operations Officer at U.S. Army Cadet Command in Fort Knox, Kentucky.

“Capt. Cotton has volunteered to be the commander of Charlie Company and accepts the challenges that come with that position,” Cloud mentioned.

“This is an exciting opportunity. Not everyone gets … a chance to serve in this capacity,” Cotton said prior to the ceremony taking place. “More than anything, I love working with and training Soldiers, and watching them grow, develop and be successful.”

“The history and legacy of the 100th Bn., 442nd Inf. Regt. is deep with challenges, accomplishments and milestones that stand apart from many other organizations,” said Cloud. “Today is no different and demonstrates not only the uniqueness of the unit, but the ability to adapt and live up to our Army values.”

Charlie Co. will continue to train for its mission and improve overall unit readiness, said Cotton when asked about her plans for the unit.

“At the heart of my command philosophy is the importance of being a physically, mentally, spiritually fit unit and promoting a culture of excellence and teamwork,” she said.

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