A subdued ceremony was held on June 17 in Fort Stewart as Command Sergeant Major Denice Malave came on board as the new Command Sergeant Major of the Third Sustainment Brigade, Third Infantry Division.
The ceremony was attended by a hand full of soldiers due to the installation still restricting activities due to the Coronavirus.
The change of responsibility ceremony featured the traditional passing of the sword from former Command Sergeant Major, Col. Steven A. Erickson to CSM Malave.
The sword signifies the transfer of responsibility and authority from the outgoing CSM to the incoming CSM. The saying goes, “Command Sergeant Majors may come and go but the sword remains razor sharp.”
Malave will oversee 1800 soldiers that make up the Third Sustainment Brigade.
“It’s very exciting,” she said. “I was just here 20 months ago as the support operation Sergeant Major in the same brigade so to be returning to be the Third Sustainment Brigade CSM is truly humbling and I’m excited to be here. Excited for the position and for the challenge.”
CSM Malave drove 22 hours from Fort Carlson Colorado to take the helm of the Third Sustainment Brigade. She’s been in the Army for 23 years. She served at Fort Bragg 12 years. She’s also been at Fort Carlson, Korea, been deployed several times and now has her second stay at Fort Stewart.
Malave said she is originally from Washington State. She said she is ready to be of service to her fellow soldiers.
“To serve as their senior enlisted advisor,” she added. “Give them direction, purpose and motivation and do the right thing while I’m in the seat and also take it to the next level.”
She said her first order of business was to get out and meet the Brigade.
“Get to know my soldiers, my officers, my non-commissioned officers and making sure they are ready to give 100 percent not only to me but to the organization and make it a better sustainment brigade for all of Fort Stewart,” she said.
She said coming in during the pandemic is just another challenge to adapt and overcome.
“It is what it is,” she said. “COVID-19 has been around for several months and it doesn’t change anything when it comes to leadership discipline and standard. I think we will be okay as a sustainment brigade.”