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682d ASOS welcomes new commander

  • Published
  • By Marc Barnes
  • Pope Field
POPE ARMY AIRFIELD, N.C. — Airmen of the 682d Air Support Operations Squadron here joined with special guests and family members to welcome a new commander of the unit July 22, as Lt. Col. Nicole Capozzi assumed command from Lt. Col. David Arriola during a change-of-command ceremony.

Col. Chris Jensen, 18th Air Support Operations Group commander, presided over the mid-morning ceremony, which was held in the group headquarters here. He bid farewell to Arriola and his family, and welcomed Capozzi and her family to Pope Field.

“With the departure of one leader, it’s my pleasure to welcome another. Lt. Col. Nicole ‘Frenchie’ Cappozi brings a fresh new leadership style, set of experiences, and an impressive record of success,” Jensen said, adding that those traits will be essential as she leads the men and women of the 682d ASOS to new heights.

Capozzi comes to Pope from the 1st Air Support Operations Group at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Washington, where she served as the director of operations. She is an experienced Air Battle Manager with more than 1,200 flight hours in the E-3 Sentry, and has served in various positions throughout her 16-year career, including service as a space and control systems engineer, flight commander, chief of training and assistant director of operations.

“Although she is new to Pope Field, she is not new to the (tactical air control party community), and she knows the business well,” Jensen said of Capozzi. “She has an innovative spirit, and unmatched drive for excellence, and she is the right person for the job and will pick up right where Colonel Arriola left off. Airmen of the 682d, you are in good hands.”

Arriola, who took command of the 682d ASOS in July 2014, leaves Pope to become the deputy commander of the 607th Air Support Operations Group at Osan Air Base, South Korea.

Capozzi graduated from the Air Force Academy in 2000 with a degree in astronautical engineering and attended air battle manager training at Tyndall Air Force Base, Florida, in 2002-2003. She is also 2013 graduate of the Air Command and Staff College at Maxwell Air Force Base, Alabama.

As the new commander of the 682d ASOS, Capozzi said she was humbled to have the honor of serving with the Airmen of the 18th ASOG. She also thanked Arriola for his leadership and dedication over the last two years, and for his mentorship as she prepared to take command of the unit since arriving at Pope a few weeks ago.

Capozzi thanked her children, her husband Nick – an Army chief warrant officer – and her parents, who were also in attendance. Then she turned her focus to the Airmen of the 682d, expressing appreciation and excitement while looking forward to the next two years as their commander.

“To the Condors, thank you for all you do. Each and every one of you has a part to play in order for our mission to be successful,” she said. “I’m truly happy to be able to continue to serve within the ASOS community, in coordinating and directing air support for our Army counterparts … I can’t wait to see where the next two years will take us, but I know wherever it is, we will be ready.