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CEO PROFILE: Col. Thomas J. Tickner Named Commander of Savannah District, Army Corps of Engineers

Category: CEO Profiles

July 29, 2013 – Col. Thomas J., Tickner has taken over as the new commander of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Savannah District, replacing Col. Jeff M. Hall whose official last day was July 19.


At a ceremony officiated by Brig. Gen. Donald E. Jackson, commander of the Corps' South Atlantic Division in Atlanta, the Change of Command ceremony marked the Army tradition to introduce a new commander to the District every three years.


Tickner will take over the Savannah District's lead role in managing three hydroelectric dams on the Savannah River and a period of potential significant financial investment in deepening the Savannah Rivber.


Tickner joins the Savannah District as a recent graduate of the Dwight D. Eisenhower School for National Security and Resource Strategy, formerly known as the Industrial College of the Armed Forces (ICAF) in Washington, D.C.


Before attending the school, he served as the Military Assistant to the Assistant Secretary of the Army for Civil Works, and has served in various military assignments including a deployment to Operation Iraqi Freedom. He also served in the Corps' Sacramento District and commanded the Philadelphia District.


His experience in civil works projects and the Delaware harbor deepening project makes him a valuable asset to the Savannah District as the Savannah Harbor Expansion Project moves forward, Jackson said.  


 "To the people of this great region, I look forward to getting to know you and I pledge to continue servicing our nation by passionately pursuing and balancing the needs of the region," Tickner said during his remarks.


Col. Jeff Hall: Reflecting on 3 Years of Savannah Success and a 29-Year Career


Col. Hall is retiring after 29 years in service, and reflected on his career after formally relinquishing command.


"Serving as commander of the Savannah District has been absolutely the best job I have had in my 29-year Army career," Hall said. "I knew my time here would be an honor and a challenge, but also I knew it would be the pinnacle assignment of my career."

"What makes this assignment so special is the extraordinary people I served with," he said. "The Savannah District team is a collection of talented, dedicated, and patriotic professionals who are up to any challenge."

In the last three years of his command, the Savannah District executed more than 635 projects valued at $5.45 billion, and managed 941 construction contracts; while ranking number one in military construction customer satisfaction throughout USACE for all three years. That military mission included $3.5 billion in projects for the Base Realignment and Closure program at Fort Benning, Ga.

On the civil works side, Hall entered the District while all three reservoirs on the Savannah River were full (lakes Hartwell, Richard B. Russell and J. Strom Thurmond)—and left the District with all three above "full pool." In between, the basin experienced a severe drought and rainfall deficit, posing its own set of challenges for the district and many stakeholders throughout the basin.


Most notably, under Hall's leadership, the district completed the final report and the Record of Decision for the long-awaited Savannah Harbor Expansion Project. This potential $652 million project would deepen the Savannah shipping channel to 47 feet, allowing for passage of large, Post-Panamax cargo ships to the Georgia Port Authority's Garden City Ocean Terminal. Because the project will increase shipping efficiencies and lower transportation costs, it is expected to yield an annual net benefit of $174 million to the nation.


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