News: Pangborn takes up station sword of office
Story by Cpl. Scott L. Tomaszycki
MARINE CORPS AIR STATION CHERRY POINT, N. C. - Sgt. Maj. Angela M. Maness, will pass the sword of office and responsibilities as the air station sergeant major to Sgt. Maj. Benjamin L. Pangborn during a ceremony here today.
Pangborn last served as the sergeant major of Wounded Warrior Battalion East. Five years ago he was a first sergeant in Marine Wing Communications Squadron 28 here.
“I look forward to seeing and working with the Marines on a daily basis,” said Pangborn. “It is an honor and a privilege to be here as the station sergeant major and be working for them. That’s what it’s all about. It’s about the Marines, it’s about their families, and it’s about continuing the incredible work that is going on here at Cherry Point.”
Pangborn has an infantry background and served a tour as a Marine Security Guard. He deployed as part of Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm early in his career and deployed to Iraq three times as the MWCS-28 first sergeant.
Maness, who was the first female sergeant major of Cherry Point, will also become the first female to hold the title at Marine Barracks Washington at 8th & I. She will be the senior enlisted adviser for 1,500 Marines working at the Pentagon, Marine Corps Institute, the White House and the barracks itself.
While she appreciates history for what it is, she said the post has nothing to do with gender and everything to do with performance.
“I’m just a sergeant major who happens to be female,” said Maness. “I didn’t get selected on the merit that I’m a female, I was selected because of credentials. If you ask me, ‘how is it that you’re the first female here,’ it’s not about that, it’s about taking care of Marines.”
Her parting orders reflect that philosophy.
“There is one thing I’d like to say to the Marines before I leave, and that’s to give the incoming sergeant major motivation, stay on track with exactly what they’re doing right now, and make it better,” said Maness. “I was very proud to come here. I would have liked to stay the entire 18 months to three years, but it is on honor to be selected to be the 8th and I sergeant major.”