News: 376th AEW welcomes new commander
Story by Staff Sgt. Matthew Benedetti
376th Air Expeditionary Wing Public Affairs
TRANSIT CENTER AT MANAS, Kyrgyzstan -- Col. Corey Martin assumed command of the 376th Air Expeditionary Wing from Col. James Jacobson during a ceremony held inside the community activities center on June 13. Presiding over the change of command was Lt. Gen. David Goldfein, U.S. Air Forces Central commander, southwest Asia.
The ceremony was attended by local dignitaries from the Kyrgyz Republic and the international diplomatic community including U.S. Ambassador Pamela Spratlen, who presented the opening remarks.
"We will miss Colonel Jacobson's teamwork, patriotism and dedication. My colleagues in the Department of State in Washington also want to applaud you for the outstanding job that you have done," Spratlen said.
Jacobson was awarded the Bronze Star for his service as commander of the 376th AEW. He will serve as Global Mobility Panel Chair at the Pentagon in his next assignment.
Goldfein expressed confidence in the leadership of Martin, "I only put forward one name. Colonel Martin is perfectly suited for this command," he said.
In talking about taking command and working with the Kyrgz people, Martin said that, "It is a privilege to be able to perform this vital mission side-by-side with you. You are seeing America's finest patriots -- soldiers, sailors, Marines and airmen -- transit your country."
The Transit Center at Manas serves as a premier air mobility hub for coalition forces operating in the Area of Responsibility. The around the clock missions consist of aerial refueling, airlift, onward movement of troops and strengthening partnerships with the Kyrgz Republic.
Martin is a command pilot with more than 3,700 flying hours. He is a graduate of the Air Force Academy and was commissioned in 1991. He served as a C-141 and C-17 examiner airdrop aircraft commander, chief of wing safety, squadron commander and various staff assignments at the major command and combatant command level. Martin has operational flying experience during Operations Enduring and Iraqi Freedom and deployed squadron command experience in Operation Iraqi Freedom. Martin arrives from Kadena Air Base, Japan where he served as 18th Wing vice commander.
"We are grateful for your continued partnership and support. I look forward to building on the strong relationship that has developed here at the Transit Center," said Martin.
Local residents were eager to welcome Martin. "I would like to thank Colonel Jacobson for inviting us and wish good luck to the new commander. We wish him well," said Aidarov Samuddin, village mayor of Jahny-Jehr.