FORT DRUM, N.Y. (WWTI) — A police battalion at Fort Drum has welcomed a new commander.

The 91st Military Police Battalion has named Lieutenant Colonel Anthony Howell as the newest battalion commander and Directorate of Emergency Services director. This change of command took place at a ceremony on June 18 at Division Hill on the Fort Drum installment.

According to Fort Drum leadership, Howell previously served as deputy commander for the 89th Military Police Brigade at Fort Hood, Texas.

Howell has also served in several other assignments included staff synchronization and division operations officer at the Pentagon, and battalion executive officer and operations officer, 716th Military Police Battalion, Fort Campbell, Kentucky.

He was also deployed three times to Iraq between 2005 and 2010 in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom..

“I fully understand and appreciate the duty of not only of being in charge of maintaining an MP battalion: ready to deploy in defense of this nation, but also the safety and security of Fort Drum, and all of those who live, work and play here,” expressed Howell. “It is a deeply personal duty, and I do not take it lightly. To the leaders and Soldiers of the 91st MP Battalion: your reputation as a rock-steady, professional organization has been validated and surpassed in my observations over the last couple of weeks.”

During the ceremony on June 18, members of the Fort Drum law enforcement community attended. The ceremony was officiated by 16th Military Police Brigade Commander Colonel Jon Myers.

Myers welcomed Howell and his family and commended outgoing Lieutenant Colonel Matthew LeBlanc for his leadership.

“Matt increased operational readiness across the Mountain Guardian battalion each and every day,” Myers said. “At the same time, Matt took time to teach, coach and mentor lieutenants and company commanders on what readiness truly means. That is Matt’s real legacy as he now transitions out of the Army: a generation of Mountain Guardians who understand what it takes to lead Soldiers and prepare those Soldiers for largescale combat operations.”

LeBlanc is set to retire after 26 years of service and return to his home state of Minnesota.