"I would like to express my sincere gratitude and appreciation towards all SNMCMG1 personnel sailed under my command and thank them for their proven professionalism, motivation and excellent duty. With all respect, I hand over the SNMCMG1 command to Captain Sam Brasfield, and I am very certain that the readiness and professional skills and effectiveness of the SNMCMG1 under his command will continue to meet the highest standards", said the outgoing Commander of SNMCMG1, Commander Jan Wijchers.
Captain Sam Brasfield will command SNMCMG1 from the flagship FGS Elbe of the German Navy.
"It is a huge honor and privilege to stand before you today taking command of this Group,"said Captain Sam Brasfield. "SNMCMG1 is a multi-national integrated force that demonstrates a constant and visible reminder of the Alliance's solidarity and cohesion. This is the first time the U.S. will lead a SNMCMG, demonstrating our resolve and commitment in supporting NATO."
Standing NATO Mine Countermeasures Group One (SNMCMG1) is one of four standing maritime groups composed of ships from various allied countries. These vessels are continuously available to NATO to perform different tasks ranging from participation in exercises to operational missions. They also serve as an on-call maritime force as a part of the NATO Very High Readiness Joint Task Force (VJTF) while exhibiting forward presence and contributing to operational interoperability among Allied naval forces to support greater regional security and stability.