Change of Command

Special Forces Command (Airborne)

Fort Bragg, North Carolina

07 September 2001


Major General

Geoffrey C. Lambert

receives the 

U.S. Army

Special Forces Command



Lt. General Doug Brown

FORT BRAGG, N.C. – Surrounded by a sea of green berets, the U. S. Army Special Forces Command colors changed hands in a ceremony at 9 a.m., Sept. 7., at Meadows Memorial Plaza here.
  Representatives of all seven special forces groups – 1st SFG (Abn.), Fort Lewis Wash.; 3rd SFG (Abn.) Fort Bragg, N.C.; 5th SFG (Abn), Fort Campbell, Ky.; 7th SFG (Abn.), Fort Bragg N.C.; 10th SFG (Abn.), Fort Carson, Colo.; 19th SFG (Abn.) a California National Guard unit and 20th SFG (Abn.), an Alabama National Guard unit -- watched as Brig. Gen. Frank J. Toney handed over the reigns of the Army’s legendary Special Forces to Maj. Gen. Geoffrey C. Lambert.

“Special Forces is a fraternity of warriors, the ultimate professionals in conducting special operations when the cause of freedom is challenged,” said Lt. Gen. Doug Brown, commander, U. S. Army Special Operations Command. Brown hosted the ceremony. 

  “Today’s Special Forces solider is better trained, better equipped and more capable than ever in history. They have language skills, understand cultures, are experts with their weapons, are hard as nails and quite frankly, are an easy solution to a lot of difficult problems. It is these kind of soldiers that deserve the very best in leaders,” Brown said.
   “They just don’t come any better than Maj. Gen. Geoffrey Lambert,” said Brown. “He is trained, ready and eager.”

  “Gen. Shinseki has said that the Army is an affair of the heart, and indeed it is. After five years of joint time, it is good to be back in Army green and at Fort Bragg, N.C.,” said Lambert. “It is great to be home.”
  Lambert thanked everyone for attending and expressed his gratitude for the opportunity to lead men he described as having “never seen a contiguous battlefield, and are unconventional in thought and action,” who “work in the dark, wet and cold in strange and lonely, far-off places.” 
   To the outgoing Toney, Brown said, “Thanks for your leadership, thanks for your dedication, your hard work, your advice, your mentorship and your patriotism. You have done well and the force is better because of you.” 
“Over the years, I have seen over and over again that the Special Forces soldier rises above the ordinary, surpasses what is expected, and never fails to inspire others to reach higher and endure longer. When I joined the Army in 1972, I could not have realized that my career would culminate in having the best job in the Army, and I’m grateful for those who assisted me along the way,” said Toney.

“Finally, I am privileged to have served with the greatest soldiers in the world. To have walked in your ranks – to have both served you and been entrusted to lead you. I have loved every minute of the time I have spent in Special Forces, and my proudest moment is to have served as your commanding general,” Toney concluded.


  Major General Lambert, a native of Inman, Kan., received his commission in May 1973, after graduating from the University of Oklahoma. His past assignments include several positions with the 75th Ranger Regiment.  He also served as operations officer, 7th Special Forces Group (Abn); battalion commander, 1st Bn., 7th Special Forces Group (Abn); commander, 10th Special Forces Group (Abn); commander, Special Operations Command Europe; Commander, Special Operations Command (IFOR) and director of the Center for Operations, Plans and Policy, U.S. Special Operations Command, MacDill Air Force Base, Fla.
  His awards include the Defense Distinguished Service Medal, Defense Superior Service Medal, Legion of Merit, Defense Meritorious Service Medal, the Southwest Asia Service Medal, the Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, NATO Medal and the Golden Cross of Honor from the Federal Republic of Germany.  In addition, he has been awarded the Combat Infantryman Badge, Expert Infantryman Badge and Master Parachutist Badge and the Special Forces and Ranger Tabs. 

Major General 

Geoffrey C. Lambert 

with friends 

Robin Moore and Phil King


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