• Big reveal made at STB change of command

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  • Katie Peterson | Staff Writer
    Lt. Col. Charles D. Ausman had more than just his assumption of command to celebrate at the Combined Arms Center Special Troops Battalion change of command ceremony Nov. 2 in DePuy Auditorium.
    Like many change of command ceremonies on post, this one was followed by a reception line to greet the new commander and a cake to celebrate, but this one had a twist.
    With his wife Jessi by his side, Ausman carefully cut into the cake while the crowd waited to find out whether blue or pink coloring would be found inside.
    After 13 slices were cut with no definitive results, the color was finally discovered.
    “It’s four,” Jessi Ausman said, indicating that they would be welcoming their fourth son in April.
    This baby will come following Jameson, 5; William, 4; and Samson, 2.
    “If you ever do this, ask them where they put the color,” Ausman said, as he continued to cut the cake.
    Choosing to have the gender reveal in this setting was convenient, Ausman said.
    “We thought it was a good idea considering all the people that came from out of town would be in the same place,” he said.
    It was appropriate, too, because Ausman met Jessi in 2011 when he was a Command and General Staff Officer Course Student and she was working in the area.
    “Fort Leavenworth seems like a homecoming of sorts for us. So, returning for command and having a fourth son here really puts icing on the cake,” Ausman said. “Jessi and I are thrilled to take command here at Fort Leavenworth.”
    Ausman was commissioned into the Army in 2003 after graduating from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, N.Y.
    Throughout his career he has served in multiple leadership positions in Germany; Rock Island Arsenal, Ill.; Fort Riley, Kan.; and Korea. Most recently, he served with the U.N. Mission in Bamako, Mali.
    “We’re very lucky to have an exceptional leader in Lieutenant Colonel Dave Ausman here to take command of this battalion,” said Col. Edward Bohnemann, CAC chief of staff. “His depths of experience and prior knowledge in Fort Leavenworth will serve him well as the commander of the (STB).
    “Dave, we want to welcome you (and your family) to this new position,” he said. “Everyone in the Fort Leavenworth community wishes you good luck and will support you in your endeavors throughout the next few years.”
    Ausman assumed command of the battalion from Lt. Col. Michael Porcelli, who took command in 2016.
    During Porcelli’s time as commander, Bohnemann said, soldier readiness improved, administrative procedures were revised to better support soldiers, the relationships across the 30 organizations that make up the STB were enhanced, and formal relationships with the 500th Military Police Detachment and the Fort Leavenworth Garrison were established.
    Page 2 of 2 - “All of these actions and efforts have been focused on one thing, and that is taking care of our soldiers and our families,” Bohnemann said. “Mike, I can honestly tell you that your team’s performance has been exceptional and you have made a difference to this community.”
    Porcelli said his last two weeks as commander came with a “rollercoaster of emotion,” but that he was confident in the new leadership.
    “For me it is hard to leave an organization, to leave a group of people I consider my family,” Porcelli said. “It has been an absolute honor and privilege over the last two years to have been your commander.
    “Dave, you’re in good hands,” he said. “You’re absolutely the right leader for this job. You’re going to have fun, you’re going to be challenged and you’re going to be presented with some unique situations, but hands down, it is going to be very rewarding.”
    In his next assignment, Porcelli will work for CAC Headquarters as the leader of the Field Force Integration Division.
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