Haney Takes Charge of STRATCOM, Kehler Retires

Gen. Robert Kehler relinquished the leadership of US Strategic Command to Adm. Cecil Haney during a ceremony at Offutt AFB, Neb. “I intend to work diligently with this team of professionals to ensure the effectiveness of the global operations Strategic Command conducts,” said Haney to the command’s assembled personnel during the Nov. 15 command change. Haney comes to STRATCOM after leading US Pacific Fleet since January 2012. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel presided over the ceremony; he praised Kehler, who stepped down after commanding STRATCOM since January 2011. “For the past three years, you have had a remarkable leader in General Bob Kehler,” said Hagel. After the command change, Joint Chiefs Chairman Army Gen. Martin Dempsey led the retirement ceremony for Kehler, who is leaving the Air Force after 38 years in uniform. “Bob has carried the strategic torch for the nation and been a clear voice for this command’s capabilities throughout his entire career,” said Dempsey, who presented Kehler with the Defense Distinguished Service Medal. “I’ve been fortunate to work with, and for, the best, brightest, and most talented people the nation has to offer,” said Kehler, whose retirement takes effect on Jan. 1. (Offutt report by MCS1C Byron C. Linder) (Hagel transcript)