News: 7th ID has new leadership
Story by Staff Sgt. Dayan Neely
JOINT BASE LEWIS-MCCHORD, Wash. – On a day cold enough to snow, sentiments of the outgoing 7th Infantry Division commanding general and his incoming counterpart were a warm welcome to the packed audience in a helicopter hangar at Gray Army Airfield Feb. 4.
Maj. Gen. Terry Ferrell replaced Maj. Gen. Stephen R. Lanza as 7th ID’s second commander since the division was reactivated in 2012.
“From day one, this division has been about the team,” Lanza said. “We set forth to build a ready and resilient combined arms team of teams, focused on mission, oldier and family readiness.”
The ceremony began with the host, Lt. Gen. Robert B. Brown, the I Corps commanding general, praising Lanza’s accomplishments and the support he has had from his subordinate soldiers, family and friends.
“7th Infantry Division has had a huge impact in a rebalance to the Pacific,” Brown said. “They have excelled at tough, demanding, realistic training at home station and at the National Training Center…These types of achievements and this overall success of this division, it doesn’t happen by chance.”
Brown followed with a description of the expected success to come under the command of Ferrell due to his proven track record and experience with troop training while in Fort Irwin, Calif.
Lanza took to the podium and gave credit for his success as a commander to his leadership, subordinate commanders and noncommissioned officers.
“That is what it is all about,” stated Lanza. “Ensuring our soldiers and units are lethal, agile and capable of serving as an expeditionary force in support of the Army’s strategic goals. It is, and always will begin and end with leadership- leadership at every level.”
He also gave thanks to his own family and all the families that support the soldiers of 7th ID.
Lanza was commissioned from the U.S. Military Academy in 1980, and has served with various units, including the 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault), 501st Combat Aviation Battalion, and multiple strategic planning and capabilities sections in Washington, D.C.
Prior to this command, Lanza deployed in support of Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm and later served in Iraq supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom. He also deployed to Bosnia-Herzegovina under Operation Joint Guard.
His military education includes the U.S. Military Academy, the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College and School for Advanced Military Studies, and the National War College.
As Lanza relinquished the podium to his successor Ferrell, the two friends shook hands and gave each other a hug of gratitude and confidence.
Ferrell’s address was short and sweet, giving thanks to his leadership and subordinates for their welcome, his family for their support and his new division for embracing his leadership.
Ferrell praised the division for its success and good name, with hopes of continuing that tradition.
“This is a phenomenal division,” he said. “You’ve done great things… We want to be a part of the team, and move forward as a ‘team of teams.’”
He left the podium invoking his new soldiers to “trust in me.”
Farrell, the former U.S. Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa commander, commissioned through the Reserve Officer Training Corps program at Marshall University in 1984.
He deployed numerous times, including multiple trips to Afghanistan and Iraq.
His military education includes the U.S. Army War College, the Armor Officer Basic and Advanced Courses, Combined Services Staff School, and the Command and General Staff College.
Lanza will take command of I Corps during a ceremony Feb. 6 after being receiving his third star and subsequent promotion to lieutenant general.