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    Army civilian public affairs officer chronicles US military’s premier all hazards command

    Army civilian public affairs officer chronicles US military’s premier all hazards command

    Photo By Sgt. 1st Class Angel Martinez-Navedo | Col. John P. Kunstbeck (left), the chief of staff for the 20th Chemical, Biological,...... read more read more



    Story by Maj. Steven Modugno 

    20th CBRNE Command

    ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND, Md. – A U.S. Army civilian public affairs officer chronicles the U.S. military’s premier all hazards command in publications and on websites around the world.

    Walter T. Ham IV, the deputy public affairs director for the 20th Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear, Explosives (CBRNE) Command, was selected as the U.S. Army Forces Command Civilian Writer of the Year and 20th CBRNE Command Civilian of the Quarter.

    A native of Charlotte, North Carolina, Ham tells stories that feature the command and its Soldiers and Army civilians while strengthening its partnerships with joint, interagency and allied organizations around the world. In addition to serving as deputy public affairs director, Ham is also the editor-in-chief of The Defender newsletter.

    Ham is a retired U.S. Navy Chief Journalist who deployed on the aircraft carrier USS America during Operation Desert Storm and the amphibious assault ship USS Bonhomme Richard during tsunami relief operations in Indonesia and naval operations in the Persian Gulf. He also served as the staff journalist and director of internal communications for the Chief of Naval Operations in the Pentagon during 9/11 and its aftermath.

    Ham earned his bachelor’s degree in mass communications/journalism from Excelsior College and his master’s degree in nonfiction writing from Johns Hopkins University.

    He earned his Command and Staff Diploma from the U.S. Naval War College, his Advanced Web Design Certificate and Freelance Writer Certificate from Penn Foster and his Public Relations Certificate from Rutgers University.

    A former Pacific Stars & Stripes reporter, Ham has served as a civilian public affairs officer for the Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard, Army and Department of Defense. He has traveled to five continents, 20 countries and 35 states.

    To bolster the professions in the command, Ham also highlights legends in the Explosive Ordnance Disposal, Chemical Corps and Special Forces communities and writes about CBRNE enablers like the Military Working Dog teams that support EOD techs.

    Col. John P. Kunstbeck, the chief of staff for the 20th CBRNE Command, said Ham and the public affairs team had dramatically increased news coverage of the command.

    “It’s just amazing at the highest levels of the Department of Defense, our articles are being seen on almost a weekly basis,” said Kunstbeck, a U.S. Army Nuclear and Countering Weapons of Mass Destruction officer who is originally from Altoona, Pennsylvania. “That’s really a testament to the entire public affairs section and especially to Mr. Ham.”

    Ham, who previously served at 20th CBRNE Command from 2014 to 2015, said he welcomed the opportunity to return to the command and serve as the deputy public affairs director in 2021.

    Ham said the 20th CBRNE Command is fortunate to have an extraordinary public affairs team with Maj. Steven M. Modugno, the public affairs director and Santa Clarita, California, native, as well as public affairs and audiovisual specialists Marshall R. Mason from Richmond, California, and Angel D. Martinez-Navedo from Vaga Baja, Puerto Rico.

    The 20th CBRNE Command public affairs team puts in long hours in the office and on the road to produce stories, photos and video products to highlight the multifunctional unit.

    “This is truly a one-of-a-kind command and public affairs team,” said Ham. “The brave, smart and talented Soldiers and U.S. Army civilians at this command take on amazing missions around the world and this public affairs team works hard to ensure they are recognized for their service.”

    Ham has written more than a thousand news and feature stories on everything from naval operations in the Persian Gulf and congressional hearings on Capitol Hill to lighthouse maintenance on the Chesapeake Bay and training exercises on the Korean Peninsula.

    During his 36 years of Navy and civil service, Ham has also crafted more than 500 speeches, scripts and messages for flag and general officers in the Navy, Army and Air Force.

    Ham credited his wife MiOk R. Ham and their Catholic faith with his continued success throughout his career.

    “I’ve truly been blessed,” said Ham. “With the help of God and for His greater glory, I strive to make the world a better place by telling the story of the people who defend liberty in the greatest military in the history of the world.”



    Date Taken: 06.20.2023
    Date Posted: 06.20.2023 11:13
    Story ID: 447529
    Hometown: ALTOONA, PA, US
    Hometown: CHARLOTTE, NC, US
    Hometown: RICHMOND, CA, US
    Hometown: SANTA CLARITA, CA, US

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