JOINT BASE LEWIS-MCCHORD, WASH – On a warm morning in the south sound, Lancer soldiers with the 2nd Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division, stood at attention to welcome their new command sergeant major during a change of responsibility ceremony, April 25, outside the brigade headquarters on Joint Base Lewis-McCord, Wash.
The ceremony signified the end of Command Sgt. Maj. Andrew Connette’s time as the senior enlisted adviser for the Lancer brigade, and the beginning of Command Sgt. Maj. Timothy Dotson’s responsibility to the commander, Soldiers, and families of the brigade.
The command sergeant major serves as the senior enlisted advisor to the commander, and is responsible for the overall discipline, enforcement of policies, and oversight of training.
Connette led the Lancer brigade for more than two years, most recently during a nine- month deployment to Kandahar province, Afghanistan. The Lancers oversaw the third phase of transition to the Afghan Security Forces, where the ANSF took the lead in Kandahar City and the contested terrain of Arghandab.
“The word I use to describe my feeling to be amongst [the Soldiers of the Lancer Brigade] is humbled,” said Connette. “[The Soldiers and their families] have demonstrated incredible resilience through some of the toughest situations of loss and uncertainty.”
Connette said he was thrilled to be turning over responsibility to his good friend Dotson, who he has worked closely with for the last six years.
Dotson served as the command sergeant major for the 1st Battalion, 17th Infantry Regiment, under 2-2 SBCT. Dotson led the 1-17 Inf. during a nine-month deployment within Zharay district, Afghanistan, which is credited as the birthplace of the Taliban.
“It is an honor to follow [Connette] as a [command sergeant major]. He is a mentor and he is a friend. I know the hard work he has been putting into this brigade, and I see my goal is to come in, as every leader, … and try to make the organization better,” said Dotson.
Dotson said he will ensure the brigade stays prepared for any mission it may face by continuing to train and maintain its readiness.
“I am a standards-and-discipline, straight-up, old-school NCO.I concentrate on the basics. If you can’t do the basics, we are not going to do the other stuff,” Dotson said.
Dotson looks forward to working with the Lancer team in his new role as they posture for future operations.
“We have a great team, we have new CSMs, new commanders, and we are going to reset the deck,” said Dotson. “As our Army goes further, we are going to get the right leaders in the right job, and we are going to be a good organization.”