Brig. Gen. Austin E. Renforth relinquished command of Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island and Eastern Recruiting Region to Brig. Gen. James F. Glynn during a change of command ceremony at the All-Weather Training Facility June 15, 2018.
In attendance at the ceremony were the Commandant of the Marine Corps, Gen. Robert B. Neller and the Sergeant Major of the Marine Corps, Sgt. Maj. Ronald L. Green.
Neller opened the ceremony by speaking about the foundation of leadership and the importance of the Recruit Depots in the grand scheme of the Corps’ mission.
“It’s very easy as a Marine to take for granted some of the things that we expect from ourselves,” he said. “We expect that Marines are going to be operationally excellent. We expect that when we go to the fight that we’re going to prevail and be successful. What I’ve learned over the past three years is the most important thing we do is we find good people and convince them to try and make this team and earn the [Eagle, Globe and Anchor]. It all begins with the recruiters and the drill instructors, and everybody on this depot. That’s the foundation of our house.”
Neller congratulated the outgoing Renforth on his efforts to improve the depot over the last two years.
“He’s a developmental leader, he’s a coach, he never quits, he never complains,” Neller said. “I gave him a task and he’s accomplished it.”
Glynn welcomed guests and visiting dignitaries before his opening remarks as commanding general.
“It is amazing to see what the Marines do day in and day out in this environment,” he said. “For those of you here, you wonder if what you’re doing is making a difference, does it have an effect; I can tell you without hesitation that the answer is yes. It is an absolute pleasure to be here and I can’t tell you how much I treasure the opportunity to join a team like this at a time like this, to take the best of what our country has to offer and give them the opportunity to walk through those silver doors and say, ‘We make United States Marines.’”
Renforth said farewell to his Marines and reflected on his two-year tenure as commanding general.
“Thank you for the ride; it’s been a distinct honor for me,” he said. “I have absolutely loved being your commanding general; this will never get old for me. I won’t be far because I’m leaving part of my soul on this island. God bless and Semper Fi.”
Glynn’s prior assignment was as the Deputy Commanding General of Special Operations Joint Task Force, Operation Inherent Resolve (Forward) since July 2017. A career infantryman, he has also served as the Military Assistant to the Assistant Commandant of the Marine Corps and later as the Director of the Office of U.S. Marine Corps Communication.
He previously served in Fallujah, Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom II and later returned to Iraq in 2006-2007 as the Battalion Landing Team Commanding Officer, 2nd Battalion, 4th Marine Regiment, 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit.