MILWAUKEE — A new commander took charge of the Wisconsin Army National Guard’s 157th Maneuver Enhancement Brigade during an Aug. 2 ceremony.
Col. Matthew Beilfuss assumed command of the 157th — known as the “Iron Brigade” — from outgoing commander Col. Daniel Pulvermacher in a ceremony at Richards Street Armory in Milwaukee.
Maj. Gen. Don Dunbar, Wisconsin’s adjutant general, commended Pulvermacher for a successful command during the ceremony and lauded the unit’s readiness for both its state and federal mission.
“I want to thank you for all of your leadership,” Dunbar said. “You have made this brigade better, more ready to do the Army’s bidding, and more ready to do the governor’s bidding when needed.”
Pulvermacher took command of the 157th MEB in July 2017. He led the Iron Brigade through various missions, such as warfighter exercises, and domestic responses. He said the operations tempo has been nonstop and challenging since he took command.
“I truly believe every one of us grew, matured and learned a lot more on being better soldiers and a better organization because of that challenge,” Pulvermacher said in his final remarks to the brigade.
Pulvermacher thanked children for their support and sacrifices, and his wife for the support and teamwork they shared.
Pulvermacher will take over as the United States Property and Fiscal Officer for the Wisconsin National Guard next month.
Pulvermacher asked the Soldiers of the Iron Brigade to give Col. Beilfuss the same support they provided him throughout his command.
In his last official act as commander, Pulvermacher passed the brigade colors to Brig. Gen. Joane Mathews, Wisconsin's deputy adjutant general for Army, who then presented them to Beilfuss, formally completing the change of command.
Beilfuss has held various roles in different units within the Iron Brigade since 2001. As a career field artillery officer, he held many roles within the 1st Battalion, 121st Field Artillery, including a stint as its commander. He also served as the plans officer and the deputy commander of the 157th Maneuver Enhancement Brigade.
In his remarks, he said he was humbled by the opportunity to lead the Iron Brigade.
“I’ve known many of you awhile,” Beilfuss said. “You know about me, and I promise you my best.”
Beilfuss said he has seen an incredible improvement of skills and abilities within the Brigade over time.
Dunbar said he has full confidence in Beilfuss as a leader.
“Our job now is to take this great organization, thank our outgoing commander, get behind our incoming commander, and make this organization even better so that when the president or our governor calls on us, we’re ready.” Dunbar said to the Brigade’s Soldiers.
Headquartered in Milwaukee, the 157th is a diverse brigade with units statewide, spanning artillery, engineer and support units — all of which can be employed in support of the National Guard’s state mission as the first military responder during emergencies and its federal mission as a component of the Army’s primary combat reserve.