FARGO, N.D. — The Soldiers of the Fargo-based 141st Maneuver Enhancement Brigade (141st MEB) will host a change of command ceremony at 2 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 22.
Lt. Col. Benjamin Cleghorn will formally assume command from Col. Jon Erickson, who has commanded the unit since Oct. 2017. Erickson has recently assumed duties as the chief of staff for the joint force headquarters of the North Dakota Army National Guard in Bismarck.
The change of command ceremony is a time-honored military tradition that represents the formal transfer of authority and responsibility for a unit from one commanding officer to another. The event is witnessed by the Soldiers of the unit, as well as other military members, families and friends.
Cleghorn enlisted in the U.S. Air Force in 1988 as a security specialist serving for four years before transferring to N.D. Army National Guard. He earned his commission as an Ordnance officer through Officer Candidate School in 1997. He is a graduate of a myriad of U.S. Army schools to include the U.S. Army War College.
His assignments with the N.D. Army National Guard includes platoon leader; assistant operations officer; battalion maintenance and training officer; brigade operations officer; battalion executive officer; environmental officer for Joint Force Headquarters; and brigade S-3 operations officer. His command assignments include the 3662nd Maintenance Company during a state-side deployment in support of Operations Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom; the 191st Military Police Company while deployed to Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom; the 1st Battalion, 188th Air Defense Artillery Regiment and the 231st Brigade Support Battalion.
Cleghorn is married to the former Betty Hatlewick of Jamestown and together have four children.
Erickson received his commission in the U.S. Army as a Military Intelligence officer from the ROTC program at the University of North Dakota in 1994. He is a graduate of numerous military schools most recently graduating with honors from the U.S. Army War College with a Master of Strategic Studies degree.
His previous assignments include tactical intelligence officer; platoon leader; company executive officer; battalion intelligence officer with the 4th Infantry Division (Mechanized); and as an intelligence watch officer at U.S. European Command. He later joined the Indiana Army National Guard serving as deputy intelligence officer for the 38th Infantry Division (Mechanized); and as a battalion operations and training officer, Special Troops Battalion, 82nd Airborne Division, Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. His non-command assignments in the North Dakota National Guard include J-2 Intelligence Operations Officer, Deputy J-3 (Director of Military Support and G-3 (Operations Officer), and as the J-5/9 Director of Strategic Plans, Policies and Outreach for the North Dakota National Guard.
His previous command assignments include commander, Headquarters & Headquarters Battery, 1st Battalion, 1st Air Defense Artillery Regiment while deployed to Saudi Arabia in support of Operation Southern Watch; and led the 1st Battalion, 188th Air Defense Artillery Regiment in 2013, when the unit was deployed to the National Capital Region in support of Operation Noble Eagle. This past summer, Erickson led the 141st MEB and subordinate units in Romania while participating in exercise Saber Guardian 2019.
Erickson is married to the former Janelle Strommen of New England, North Dakota and together have four children.
The 141st MEB serves as a mission command headquarters for more than 1,700 Soldiers across three battalions that are organized into fifteen companies and batteries. It is a tailorable unit designed to conduct support area operations, maneuver support operations, support to consequence management, and stability operations in order to assure the mobility, protection, and freedom of action of the supported force. 141st MEB provides command and control, as well as training, administrative and logistical support to maintain Soldier and unit readiness for missions stateside and overseas.
WHAT: Change of command for the 141st Maneuver Enhancement Brigade
WHO: Col. Jon Erickson, outgoing commander to Lt. Col. Benjamin Cleghorn, incoming.
WHEN: Sunday, Sept. 22, 2:00 p.m.
WHERE: Fargo Armed Forces Reserve Center, 3920 31st St N, Fargo, N.D. 58102
MEDIA: No pre-coordination required. Contact Sgt. 1st Class Matthew Walstad
701-220-1991 for additional information.
The North Dakota National Guard is a trained and highly motivated force of about 4,000 Citizen-Soldiers and Citizen-Airmen. We are always prepared to provide ready units, individuals and equipment in support of our communities, state and nation. Always ready, always there.