Virtual change of command ceremony marks leadership turnover for DLA Distribution Anniston

By By Diana Dawa, DLA Distribution Public Affairs

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Defense Logistics Agency Distribution Anniston, Alabama leadership transferred from Army Lt. Col. Martin Wennblom to Army Lt. Col. Ayo Oladipofaniyi in a virtual change of command ceremony May 28.

DLA Distribution Commanding Officer, Navy Rear Adm. Kevin Jones, presided over the ceremony via video teleconference link from DLA Distribution headquarters in New Cumberland, Pennsylvania.

Because of ongoing risks associated with the global pandemic COVID-1, virtual ceremonies will replace standard traditional ceremonies while social distancing measures and travel restrictions are in place for service members and government civilians.

Wearing masks and ceremonial gloves, outgoing DDAA commander Wennblom passed the DLA organization flag to incoming commander Oladipofaniyi, signifying the official changeover.

For his achievements as DDAA commander, Wennblom was awarded the Defense Meritorious Service Medal.

“Lt. Col. Wennblom represents the very best of DLA Distribution,” stated Jones in his remarks. “His extraordinary performance as a distribution center commander enabled outstanding storage and distribution support that bolstered the readiness of the Armed Services, regional Combatant Commands, and Allied Nations.”

As the commander for DDAA, Wennblom had oversight over 235 civilians, 35 contractors and over $7 billion in inventory from all services, to include the Army’s only small arms storage and distribution facility.

Wennblom’s award citation stated, “Lt. Col. Wennblom continued to build a problem-solving culture through organizational restructuring, sound continuous process improvements and active leadership. He maximized the output of his resources to meet the needs of the warfighter while increasing the culture of accountability and commitment to the warfighter.”

Wennblom shared his appreciation and gratitude of the workforce, stating, “Please know that I will not take for granted the many lessons each of you have taught me. Thank you for providing me with professional feedback – for it’s a gift to be both given and received.  Teammates … remember true north and let your actions be the significant difference which meets the needs of our warfighters. Warfighter readiness and lethality does not just happen, as it requires your continued commitment to overcoming challenges and obstacles. Winning matters!”

Incoming commander, Lt. Col. Oladipofaniyi is new to the agency. His previous assignment was liaison officer, Army Management Task Force, Headquarters, Department of the Army, Deputy Chief of Staff G1.

Oladipofaniyi expressed he was honored to be selected for the leadership position. “I thank Admiral Jones and senior leaders for their special trust and confidence in selecting me for this position. I am both honored and humbled as I consider the immense responsibility inherent in this command.”

Originally from Nigeria, Oladipofaniyi was raised in England, but calls New York City, his home. He is a 2002 Distinguished Military Graduate from the Officer Candidate School at Fort Benning, Georgia, where he was commissioned into the Army as a 2nd Lt. in the Air Defense Artillery.

Oladipofaniyi graduated Summa Cum Laude from Park University, Missouri, with a Bachelor of Science degree in Criminal Justice. He holds a Master of Science degree in Management from the Florida Institute of Technology and a Master of Military Arts and Science in Homeland Security Studies from the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College. 

Oladipofaniyi’s additional education includes: Joint Combined Warfighting School, U.S. Army Command and General Staff College; Theater Logistics Studies Program; Combined Logistics Captain Career Course; Air Defense Artillery Officer Basic Course; Air Defense Artillery PATRIOT Course; Sapper Leader Course; Airborne School; Air Assault School; Unit Movement Officer Course and the Advanced Petroleum and Water Officer Course. 

Oladipofaniyi has served in a variety of command and staff assignments: joint transportation planner, Military Surface Deployment and Distribution Command, Scott Air Force Base, Illinois; battalion executive officer, and support operations officer of the 61st Quartermaster Battalion, Fort Hood, Texas; deputy chief of plans, 1st Theater Sustainment Command (Operational Command Post), Camp Arifjan, Kuwait; logistics advisor to the Iraqi Special Operation Forces; unit integration team lead at the U.S.  Army Sustainment Command, Rock Island, Illinois; and company commander, 10th Support Group; Okinawa, Japan.