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20th FW welcomes new commander

  • Published
  • By Staff Sgt. Destinee Sweeney
  • 20th Fighter Wing Public Affairs

Shaw and Sumter community leaders gathered for a 20th Fighter Wing change of command ceremony, May 26.

Presided over by Maj. Gen. Chad Franks, Ninth Air Force commander, the event provided an opportunity for individuals to say goodbye to Col. Derek O’Malley, outgoing 20th FW commander, and to welcome Col. Lawrence T. Sullivan, incoming 20th FW commander.

Due to COVID-19, the ceremony was altered to allow guests to social distance while still honoring military and Air Force traditions. The occasion was also livestreamed to provide a way for local citizens and service members not in attendance to watch.

“I’m grateful for the opportunity to join your ranks, to rise to your standard and lead you to continued success,” said Sullivan. “I will be demanding of your discipline, of your integrity, your creativity, your leadership and your ability to build teams capable of solving our toughest challenges. Working together we will achieve victory by valor.”

Sullivan assumed responsibility for more than 16,000 Team Shaw members and will oversee approximately 79 F-16 Vipers. Under his leadership, the 20th FW will continue its mission to prepare, sustain and employ combat-ready F-16 airpower as the core suppression of enemy air defenses wing.