An official website of the United States government
Here's how you know
A .mil website belongs to an official U.S. Department of Defense organization in the United States.
A lock (lock ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .mil website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

News Stories
Navy Expeditionary Combat Command (NECC)

First Navy Expeditionary Logistics Regiment Holds Change of Command Ceremony

by By Senior Chief Mass Communication Specialist RJ Stratchko, Navy Expeditionary Logistics Support Group Public Affairs
01 April 2022 First Navy Expeditionary Logistics Regiment (NELR) held a change of command ceremony at Naval Weapons Station-Cheatham Annex in Williamsburg, Virginia on April 1. 
Captain Christopher S. Koprivec, relieved Captain Kurt D. Williams, and served as Navy Expeditionary Logistics Support group (NAVELSG) Deputy Commander and Commodore, 1st NELR.
Mark Sakowski, NAVELSG Chief of Staff, began the ceremonies by speaking of the long-standing traditions of a change of command ceremony.
“This is our home and more importantly the lair of the octopus our unique and endearing mascot seen so predominantly in our command logos. The octopus signifies the wide range of capabilities our force brings to the warfighter,” said Sakowski. “The 1st NELR is one of four NAVELSG Regiments, but has two notable characteristics that differentiate it from the other three. First, it is the only active duty regiment and second, its officers and Sailors are dual-hatted also serving on the NAVELSG headquarters staff while also being fully certified to execute and deploy in times of humanitarian assistance or wartime crisis.
Sakowski then spoke to the audience of NAVELSG and 1st NELR personnel, family, friends, and those online, on the history of the change of command ceremony.
Sakowski then introduced Rear Adm. Dennis E. Collins, Commander, Navy Expeditionary Logistics Support Group (NAVELSG), who was the presiding officer for the ceremony, and addressed the audience.
“Today is a critical reminder of the need for continuity and leaders of all levels to continue the work of the person who came before them. We don’t have the luxury of starting over. Our work and our contributions to the security of our nation demand that we do nothing less” said Collins. “In the news cycle today, it is clear to everyone that we are in a time of increased geopolitical tension and conflict. As a global organization, our team has surged to support our expeditionary task groups. The work of the team here at NAVELSG is critical to the effort and shift to distributed maritime operations, and we need to make sure we are positioned properly that we draw on our important parts of our past and we adapt to the future environment we are in with the modern military that exists today. We need to build teams that provide critical capabilities to the fleet and our joint partners.”
“At our core, our mission is to Rearm, Refuel, and Resupply, when and where we are called upon to do that. We are expeditionary in nature and we prepare in ways others don’t, to do the tasks that we do. I know that our new Commodore will ensure we have a fully trained and fully equipped force to support building that combat power and lethality through distributed maritime operations,” said Collins. “We will be where we are needed with the people, the gear, and determination to get the job done.
Collins closed his remarks then called the military personnel present to attention and asked the guests to rise as he awarded the Meritorious Service Medal gold star in lieu of fifth award to Williams for his accomplishments while in command of 1st NELR. Collins then turned the floor over to Williams.
“During my tenure with NAVELSG and 1st NELR, there have been numerous advances and achievements accomplished by the outstanding Sailors and civilians who are on our experienced and professional staff. Our new capabilities in expeditionary reload and expeditionary fuels has created an increased demand across various fleets and area of operation. These skill sets are one we can sustain in austere and expeditionary locations globally at the highest levels of execution,” said Williams. “With these new and increasing capabilities, NAVELSG is about to embark on an exciting and significant period of growth and change. Rear Admiral Collins’ vision for the future of our force built upon distributive logistics and small unit employment will bring our capabilities and global support to a new generation, as we transition to better support strategic competition.”
Williams ended his remarks where he and Koprivec then read their orders in front of Collins to ceremoniously execute the change of command. Koprivec then addressed 1st NELR and NAVELSG for the first time as its seventh Commodore.
“I have been allowed to work with some of the most amazing Sailors along the way. I’ve had some incredible chiefs teach me and standing here now because of their efforts. Captain Williams you have continued to develop and lead this incredible command for the last two years our turnover has shown me that you and your staff have done an outstanding job, thank you for that,” said Koprivec. “This is an amazing team at NAVELSG, the Sailors, Marines, civilians, and contractors, it’s just great to be back in cargo nation. Thank you for standing the watch.”
Williams’s next command will be on the staff at Commander, U.S. Fourth Fleet in Jacksonville, Florida.
NAVELSG is a vital enabler of Maritime Prepositioning, Joint Logistics Over The Shore operations, and maritime forces ashore providing expeditionary cargo handling services for surface, air, and terminal operations, tactical fueling, and ordnance handling/reporting in support of worldwide Naval, Joint, interagency, and combined forces/organization.
For more news from Navy Expeditionary Logistics Support Group, visit or find us on social media. Facebook: @NAVELSG; Instagram @NAVELSG