Photo Information

Chef Leo Rubirosa, the Marine Corps Community Services director, left, and U.S. Marine Corps Gunnery Sgt. Wilson Jumelles, the head chef of The Club at Paradise Point, right, look over the food display during the Commanding General’s (CG) Spring Reception on Marine Corps Base (MCB) Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, April 27, 2023. The CG Spring Reception was held to promote community relations and celebrate key leaders in the community for their support of service members across Marine Corps Installations East-MCB Camp Lejeune.​ (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Cpl. Jennifer E. Douds)

Photo by Cpl. Jennifer E. Douds

Base’s Spring Reception Brings Military and Civilian Community Together

28 Apr 2023 | Nat Fahy Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune

More than 250 guests from the military and civilian community gathered for a spring reception in the Tinian Room at Marston Pavilion, Wednesday to enjoy an evening of camaraderie over heavy hors d’oeuvres that included shrimp and grits, barbecue, and sushi. The base-hosted occasion was an opportunity for Brig. Gen. Andrew Niebel, commanding general, Marine Corps Installations East-Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune to thank the attendees for their support and reflect on the many successes the base has achieved during his tenure.

“There’s one common denominator and that’s the people--the people who care about what they’re doing,” said Niebel. “And when I talk about active duty, reservists, civilian employees, retirees and our civilian community, that’s what makes this place special.”

The commanding general also spoke about the ebb and flow of successes enjoyed over an installation’s lifetime.

“There are good times and bad times,” he said. “It’s like a sine wave and for the past two years, we’ve been at the top of that sine wave. We’ve done really, really well as a base and a [Marine Expeditionary Force].

Niebel highlighted several awards MCB Camp Lejeune departments have been recognized for, to include the regional contracting office, the fire department, and the environmental management division. He also mentioned the base’s recent achievement--winning the Installation and Logistics Large Installation of the Year award for Fiscal Year (FY) 22. The base is currently competing with Marine Corps Air-Ground Combat Center 29 Palms for a presidential award called the Commander in Chief’s Award for Installation Excellence which is awarded to the top installation in the Marine Corps. MCB Camp Lejeune has incidentally received it two times in a row for FY20 and FY21, making it a 10-time recipient overall.

He also offered some insight on the construction progress for the next several years.

“You’re going to see by the end of 2025 more than 56 major construction projects done.”

The general mentioned a new bridge under construction at Onslow Beach along with headquarters buildings, medical and dental facilities and a water treatment plant to name a few.

“We’ve got all kinds of things showing up that are really huge milestones to the extent we haven’t seen since 1942,” he said.

Niebel also informed those in attendance this social event would be his last before he leaves for his follow-on assignment.

Lt. Gen. David Ottignon, commanding general, II Marine Expeditionary Force offered commendatory remarks for Niebel.

“I walk around, and you know the slogan, ‘Make Ready,’ and then you go to the ranges, you go to the facilities and the energy he and Joann brought here is remarkable,” he said. “It’s my third time here and it’s absolutely incredible. You feel it wherever you go, and it’s due to your leadership. We’re going to absolutely miss you.”

The Marine Corps Installations East change of command is currently scheduled for some time in late June.

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