Edwards takes over the Army’s sprawling Rheinland-Pfalz garrison
KAISERSLAUTERN, Germany — Col. Jason T. Edwards assumed command of U.S. Army Garrison Rheinland-Pfalz from Col. Keith E. Igyarto in a ceremony held at Daenner Kaserne on Wednesday.
Edwards comes to the garrison after completing studies as the national security fellow at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University.
Igyarto, who commanded the garrison for two years, is slated to assume duties in Crystal City, Va., as the comptroller for the newly formed Army Futures Command.
The Rheinland-Pfalz garrison consists of 29 sites scattered across southern Germany from Baumholder to Mannheim and supports about 40,000 personnel and their families, including a combined military and civilian workforce of about 16,000 people.
The transition from Harvard to a garrison in Germany is a big one, but Edwards said the difference wouldn’t really affect him.
“I treated my time at Harvard like a job. I programed my days from 8 to 5 and accomplished my studies inside that,” Edwards said. “If it didn’t work, then I would do time after my kids went to bed. The reading was incredible, probably about 1,000 pages a week if you did it all. So I looked at it as an occupation for about a year.”
Edwards said for the time being he will follow the priorities the outgoing commander had.
“I will keep those in check until I can do an honest assessment of the area,” he said. “I owe it to the region. I owe it to the community. I owe it to the garrison command.
“I must have the ability to observe and look at things and then trust that the individuals before me have made some good decisions, which I am confident in,” Edwards said.