F.E. WARREN AIR FORCE BASE, Wyo. --
Leadership changed hands at the 20th Air Force during a change of command ceremony at F.E. Warren Air Force Base, Wyoming, Jan. 26, 2018.
During the ceremony, Maj. Gen. Anthony Cotton, 20th Air Force commander, transferred command to Maj. Gen. Fred Stoss. Gen. Robin Rand, Air Force Global Strike Command commander, facilitated the symbolic exchange of authority as the presiding officer.
“We are responsible for the nation’s ICBM strike missions and vital nuclear operations, maintenance, security and support,” said Rand. “Our 20th Air Force Airmen are our nation’s guardian and sentry. Like the Airmen before them that served, these silent warriors make leaders who are ill-willed towards the United States sleep with one eye open at night.”
Stoss thanked Rand for allowing him the opportunity to command 20th Air Force and for entrusting him with the nation’s ICBM arsenal.
After accepting the flag, Stoss emphasized his priorities for the command.
"The safety of our talented and highly-valued personnel is of paramount importance both on and off duty," said Stoss. "As we perform our vitally-important duties, safety is an integral element of our mission, and we owe it to our personnel, to their families, spouses and children, to ensure they always return to their loved ones."
Stoss encouraged Airmen across 20th Air Force to focus on enhancing lethality, safety and surety.
"My first goal as your commander is to learn your issues and challenges to improve our lethality and readiness and to take care of our people and families across 20th Air Force," said Stoss. "I am in awe of your commitment to our nation, and I look forward to serving shoulder-to-shoulder with you!"
Before relinquishing command, Cotton thanked the Airmen in 20th Air Force for their service in support of the ICBM mission.
"Commanding 20th Air Force has been a privilege for me, but the real honor for Marsha and I was to see you, the Airmen of 20th Air Force, perform and innovate in ways that exceeded expectations," said Cotton. "I am extremely proud of all that you accomplished, and I am excited to see where you take 20th Air Force from here."
Cotton’s next assignment will be at Maxwell Air Force Base, Alabama where he will take command of Air University.