News: Pittsburgh Army Reserve officer promoted to brigadier general
PITTSBURGH - U.S. Army Reserve Brig. Gen. Bruce Edward Hackett reaffirmed his oath of office in a promotion ceremony held in the presence of his family, friends, colleagues and soldiers from the 78th Training Division, 316th Expeditionary Sustainment Command, and various units from his past three decades of service at the Soldiers and Sailors Hall, Feb. 23, 2014.
Hackett has been a resident of Pittsburgh since 1989, when he and his wife, Gabriella, moved here for an assignment with the Pittsburgh District, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Since then, he has held many positions in the Army Reserve, with units such as the 99th Regional Support Command and the 316th ESC.
“We were extremely excited to move to Pittsburgh from Germany. Gabriella was able to reunite with her family, and I had the good fortune to be assigned to a highly-professional organization” said Hackett. “The opportunities and experiences I encountered as an engineer officer in this region were both challenging and extremely rewarding.”
“We found Pittsburgh to be a great place to raise a family - both my children were born here,” said Hackett. “The culture, the pride, our profession, and more importantly our family ties have kept us here in Pittsburgh.”
With his promotion, Hackett is assigned as the commander of the 78th Training Division (Operations) at Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, N.J., where his organization is responsible for planning and executing the Army Reserve's Combat Support Training Program. One of the major missions in 2014 for the 78th is conducting two major winter exercises for a collective training audience of nearly 6,000 soldiers.
Hackett was promoted at the ceremony by Maj. Gen. Peter S. Lennon, the commanding general of the 377th Theater Sustainment Command, and former commanding general of the 316th ESC, where Hackett most recently served as the deputy commanding officer.
“I thank you for your leadership, your inspiration, and the dedicated support you’ve given me to make this unimaginable event possible,” said Hackett, thanking Lennon. “This promotion is a distinct honor and an act that truly humbles me."
“I was recently asked what two things attributed to my success in becoming a general officer … I said that my focus and guiding principles throughout my Army career have been my ‘commitment to my profession’ and ‘taking care of soldiers,'” said Hackett. “Our soldiers are the ones that do the heavy lifting and deserve all the credit. My job is simply to develop them, ensure they have the right resources, and motivate them to accomplish what appears to be unachievable. And to whatever rank I would be promoted to under these two guiding principles, I would be satisfied as long as my leadership is ratified in the hearts and minds of the Soldiers I've led.”
In his civilian capacity, Hackett works for the 316th ESC as the chief operations officer and lightheartedly commented, “I've got the best civilian employer when it comes to supporting Army Reservists.”
But, in a more serious tone continued, “My military and civilian employment is a symbiotic relationship. I continuously rely on my civilian-acquired skills to help me solve issues that arise during military deployments or training exercises.”
In addition, “My faith, strong support from my church, my mentors, extended family, and close friends have helped guide me though my military career over the past three decades."
“For all of you here today, especially you soldiers, my promotion to brigadier general would not have been possible without the impact you have had on my life and military career … and I remain forever grateful,” said Hackett. “I appreciate the opportunity to continue to serve, and remain honored and humbled to be at your service.”
Hackett graduated from Indiana State University in 1985 with a Bachelor of Science degree in construction technology and was commissioned as a second lieutenant through ROTC in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Throughout his career, Hackett has held many positions, including deploying to Desert Storm in 1991 with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Kuwait Emergency Recovery Office (KERO), to conduct damage assessment to critical infrastructure in war-torn Kuwait, a combat tour as the engineer battalion commander during Operation Iraqi Freedom III from 2004-2005 in Iraq, and as the deputy commanding officer of the 316th ESC in support of Theater Sustainment Operations for the U.S. Central Command in Kuwait during Operation Enduring Freedom from 2012-2013.
Hackett and his wife have two grown children, Kristen and Kraig, and have maintained strong ties to the Pittsburgh community over the years.
Hackett earned his second master’s degree in leadership and business ethics from Duquesne University where his daughter, Kristen, is also a recent graduate. Kraig, a recent graduate of Pittsburgh’s Central Catholic High School, is currently a freshman at Boston College.