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NEWS | Feb. 21, 2024

CECOM senior command representative for Europe set to retire with 35 years of service

By Cameron Porter 405th Army Field Support Brigade

New Kids on the Block were at the top of the charts, Batman was the world’s biggest movie, acid washed denim jeans were all the rage, and the Berlin Wall was about to be torn down, marking the end of communism in the Eastern Bloc of Europe.

The year was 1989, and Troy Roberts was just starting his career with the Army. But 1989 wasn’t his first introduction to the Army. While attending the University of Arizona a couple of years earlier, Roberts worked as a summer intern with the U.S. Army Electronic Systems Engineering Installation Activity. Upon obtaining his bachelor’s degree in aerospace engineering, he took his first full-time job with the Army as a project engineer with U.S. Army Information Systems Engineering Command.

Now, 35 years later, U.S. Army Communications-Electronics Command’s senior command representative in Europe and the director of the CECOM Forward Element for Europe and Africa is set to retire this year.

The career Army civilian employee, who was most recently attached to the 405th Army Field Support Brigade for nearly seven years as CECOM’s senior representative, will leave Europe this month, return to Fort Huachuca, Arizona, and retire.

“The most profound thing is the level of technology then compared to the level of technology now,” said the 58-year-old husband and father of three who also holds a master’s degree in national security and strategic studies from the U.S. Naval College.

“You know, it’s light years apart, really,” said Roberts, who hails from Sierra Vista, Arizona. “Being an engineer, I was a part of that evolution. From 64K satellite shots all the way up to where we are now – which is massive communications with big platforms and megabits worth of speed – it’s been phenomenal being a part of that transformation.”

“I'm really proud, and I feel really blessed to have been in communications at a time where there was such profound change,” said Roberts, who served with CECOM nearly his entire career but was also with the U.S. Army Network Enterprise Technology Command for a year on a developmental assignment and with the 5th Signal Command in Germany for nearly three years as the chief of plans and engineering.  

Roberts has been in a leadership role as an Army GS-15 since 2008. He said working in engineering and acquisition with Information Systems Engineering Command and what he’s doing now – operating on the tactical edge supporting multiple allies and partner nations in Europe and Africa – has been incredible.

“The one fundamental thing you get working for the Army is the mission aspect,” he said. “Independent of everything else, we have a mission to do, and that mission is extremely important. I don't think you get that same feeling with any other career, but I've had that opportunity. At the end of the day, I'll never regret my decision to work for the U.S. Army.”

CECOM sustains and delivers command, control, communications, computers, cyber, intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance readiness to enable full spectrum combat operations at the point of need. Whether repairing radar and satellite terminals to maintain battlefield awareness, delivering software updates to keep tactical radios safe from virtual intruders, or ensuring spare parts are available whenever and wherever needed, CECOM's global team equips and empowers Soldiers in all aspects of C5ISR.

The 405th AFSB is assigned to U.S. Army Sustainment Command and under the operational control of the 21st Theater Sustainment Command, U.S. Army Europe and Africa. The brigade is headquartered in Kaiserslautern, Germany, and provides materiel enterprise support to U.S. Forces throughout Europe and Africa – providing theater sustainment logistics; synchronizing acquisition, logistics and technology; and leveraging the U.S. Army Materiel Command materiel enterprise to support joint forces. For more information on the 405th AFSB, visit the official website at and the official Facebook site at